I hope you’re not sick of Mexican recipes yet! Wait, who am I kidding? Is it even possible to get sick of Mexican food?
Either way, it’s Cinco de Mayo (well almost). We must prepare the ultimate Mexican feast/drink fest. It’s the American way to celebrate!
You guys, this Roasted Green Enchilada Sauce is the sauce of all sauces. I call it Roasted Green Enchilada Sauce because it is meant for some amazing enchiladas, but it is also delicious on eggs, tacos, plain chicken, and basically any Mexican food you can think of.
It doesn’t take a genius to figure out that my recipe for Monday, my grand finale of Cinco de Mayo recipes, will feature enchiladas. And this Roasted Green Enchilada Sauce will be the star of the show. Yes, I could have made this Roasted Green Enchilada Sauce as part of the enchiladas I will be sharing with you, BUT here’s my deal with enchiladas: they are amazing tortillas stuffed with meat/cheese and topped with a flavorful sauce and more cheese that gets all melty and dreamy. The concept for making them is pretty easy, right? Warm your tortillas so they are soft, fill with a little meat and cheese, roll that baby up tight and place it in your baking dish. Repeat until all your enchiladas are made. Top with saucy goodness, cheese and pop into the oven. Simple, quick.
WRONG! If your kitchen is like mine, small enough that sometimes you need to use the dining room table as extra counter space, then you understand that when making enchiladas, that little assembly line somehow takes up your whole entire kitchen and quickly turns into quite the ordeal. Before you know it you are shuffling bowls of cheese and meat and spilling enchilada sauce everywhere. And you’re cursing at the coffee maker that lives on your counter that you only use once in a blue moon to make a Coconut Pumpkin Spice Latte but your husband uses it daily – and all of a sudden making enchiladas isn’t fun anymore and you decide you need to move to a house with a bigger kitchen!
OR you could, you know, simply make your Roasted Green Enchilada Sauce in advance. Less work, less mess, less counter space needed for the enchilada assembly. Problem solved.
BUT why should you make your own enchilada sauce when you can get it from a jar? True, you can get your enchilada sauce from a jar, and sometimes convenience wins, I get it. However, this Roasted Green Enchilada Sauce is SO worth making. It’s creamy, rich, and filled with tomatillos, roasted garlic, shallots, poblano peppers, jalapeno peppers, and a little cilantro. It’s spicy, smoky, thick and creamy, and so green! Just, it’s worth it, okay!
All you do is roast your garlic and shallots in foil packets: instead of cutting the heads off the bulb of garlic and watching it roast for 45 minutes. We don’t have time for that nonsense. You separate the cloves, and peel them, douse them in a little oil, wrap them up in their foil sauna and they become all buttery sweet, and roasted in only 15 minutes! Same with the shallots. You quarter them and wrap them in a foil packet. You roast the jalapenos and poblano peppers on the same pan. AND the tomatillos – tomatillos have a one-of-a-kind taste that only gets better when they become all soft and juicy when they are roasted. Toss all of those beautiful roasty veggies into your blender, don’t forget the cilantro, and blend away until everything is smooth and creamy and mouthwatering.
This Roasted Green Enchilada Sauce freezes beautifully, and makes enough for at least 3 enchilada casseroles. So, roast away my friends. I see green enchiladas in your future. Plus, as I said before, this sauce is delicious with eggs, tacos, chicken, and pretty much anything you can think of. If you truly love yourself you will make this sauce in preparation for Monday’s enchiladas, because I know you want to be an efficient enchilada maker!
- 2.5 pounds tomatillos, husked, rinsed, and quartered
- grapeseed oil and salt
- 1 to 2 jalapenos*
- 2 poblano peppers
- 2 heads garlic, cloves separated and skins removed from each clove
- 2 shallots, peeled and quartered
- 1½ cups fresh cilantro, including stems, trimmed
- 1½ teaspoons salt
- 1½ teaspoons cumin
- 1½ tablespoons agave nectar (optional)
- 2 tablespoons to 4 tablespoons filtered water
- Preheat oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Place the quartered tomatillos on a large rimmed baking sheet. Sprinkle with about 1 teaspoon grapeseed oil and salt. Toss to combine, set aside.
- Brush the jalapenos and poblano peppers with grapeseed oil and sprinkle with salt. Place them onto a separate medium-sized rimmed baking sheet.
- Place the garlic cloves that have been peeled on a large piece of foil. Toss with 1 teaspoon grapeseed oil, and sprinkle with salt. Fold the long ends of the foil in on themselves, and then fold the short ends in to create a secure foil packet (see photo). The garlic should be in a single layer, and not bunched up together. Repeat this same process for the quartered shallots.
- Place the foil packets on the same pan with the peppers. Put the pan with the peppers and foil packets on the oven rack that is closest to your heat source. Place the tomatillos on the rack farthest away from the heat source.
- Roast the garlic and shallots for about 10 minutes. You should be able to smell the garlic. Flip the packets over and roast for another 5 to 10 minutes; be careful not to burn. You don't want to walk away; use your nose to guide you.
- At the same time you flip the foil packets, toss the tomatillos and cook for another 5 minutes, or until they are soft and most of their juices have released. Once the tomatillos and the shallots and garlic are done (the shallots and garlic should be fork-tender), remove them from the oven and set aside to cool.
- The peppers take a little more time. Keep roasting them until the skin has blackened and blistered on each side. Cook about 10 to 15 minutes per side. Once they are roasted remove from the oven and allow them to cool to the touch. Then remove the stems from all of the peppers, and the seeds from the poblanos. Keep the seeds in the jalapenos for a spicy sauce, remove them for a more mild sauce.
- To a blender add the tomatillos (working in batches if needed), plus any juice on the pan. Add the garlic, shallots, and peppers. Blend until smooth, one minute.
- Add the cilantro, salt, and cumin. Blend until the cilantro is well incorporated, about 1 minute.
- Taste and add the agave nectar if needed, depending on how sweet your tomatillos happen to be.I found my sauce to be on the bitter side, so the agave nectar helped to mellow the bitterness. You don't need much. Also adjust any seasoning at this time. Add more cumin for more smokiness, add a little salt to help bring out the flavors.
- Add about 2 to 4 tablespoons water to thin out the sauce a little. It should cling to your spoon but should also be pourable. Add a little water at a time.
- Pour the sauce over enchiladas, tacos, eggs, anything you can think of.
- Store leftovers in an airtight container or jar for up to 5 days. Reheat leftovers slowly. Store in the freezer for even longer storage.
Nutrition Facts are based off of 1 serving out of the 6 cups, about 1.5 cups.