This Salsa Roja features toasted New Mexican chiles. The chiles provide a deep earthiness, while cumin, charred tomato, garlic, and agave finish out the sauce. Salsa Roja is a lovely accompaniment to charred meats and vegetables- especially nice with Carne Asada Tacos.
8 dried red New Mexican chiles
1 large tomato
1 t olive oil
2 garlic cloves chopped
2 T agave nectar
1/4 t cumin
Place all chiles in a cast iron skillet on your stove, and bring to medium heat. When peppers begin to puff up, and a few wisps of smoke are visible (about a minute); flip all of the chiles. Continue toasting for about another minute. Remove chiles from heat, and add to a bowl. Fill bowl with enough water to barely cover the peppers, let stand for 20 minutes. At this point, the chiles should be softened. Remove the stems and seeds from all of the peppers (be sure to wear protective gloves). Roughly chop the chiles and set aside.
Add olive oil to skillet and bring to high heat. Add tomato to the skillet. Allow the tomato to blister and char on all sides, then remove from heat. Peel and discard the tomato skin. Core and chop the tomato; set aside. Add chiles, chopped tomato, garlic, agave, and cumin to your blender; mix on high. Continue blending until sauce is the consistency you would like (add a T or two of water if needed). Season salsa with salt and pepper to taste.