We just got back in town after a week of spring break on a cruise. Shockingly, we didn’t have much food in our house, but that didn’t stop my family from wanting to chill out watching the college basketball tournament. And of course that means feeding my family while they chill. Fortunately, I had a brilliant idea, and the roasted tomatillo salsa and quick mole I whipped up to go with taquitos and tamales had everyone happy.
Of course, I did have to pick up ingredients to make our dinner first, but since no food in the house means I’m heading to Walmart anyway to stock up on some essentials, that was a perfect excuse. As I was zipping through the aisles, I picked up some Delimex appetizers, knowing that Mexican is a house favorite. Little Miss could eat taquitos until the cows come home, and I could do the same for tamales.
Even better, there’s a $1 off on any TWO (2) Delimex® Frozen Taquito products (Excluding Fruit Taquito Products) at Walmart that you can print until April 7, 2015, and of course I printed out that coupon. I may or may not print out another once since the coupons don’t expire until May 4, 2015.
With both Delimex versions of the beef tamales and white meat chicken taquitos dairy free, I was set. I’ll admit that I did spend a bit of time debating amongst the other options like rolled tacos and the pork taquitos, but I decided to stick with some tried and true favorites since I was already planning to try to convince the wee ones to try my roasted tomatillo salsa, and Mister Man would be a hard sell.
Now, I’ve made mole before (pronounced moe-lay with the emphasis on lay), and it is an all day endeavor. That part of the reason I only make it once a year. The ingredient list is about three pages long, and it has a ton of steps with simmering and waiting between many of them. The flavor is so worth it – to the point that I don’t order mole in restaurants because mine is inevitably better – but I wanted something quick and easy, so I adapted my recipe to give me a similar flavor but in a fraction of the time.
It was perfect.
I didn’t make as much mole as my typical recipe, but that’s exactly what I was looking for. This recipe made about three cups of mole, perfect to take with you to a party. Just grab some Delimex appetizers and put your mole in a pint jar, and you’re good to go.
On the flip side, the roasted tomatillo salsa is another perfect dip to go with your tamales and taquitos. Though most of my photos have the mole with the tamales and the roasted tomatillo salsa with the taquitos, both dips go great with both appetizers. The roasted tomatillo salsa recipe makes just over two cups, which is perfect because it doesn’t last in the fridge quite as long as the mole.
Roasted Tomatillo Salsa Recipe
I love tomatillos.
They’re tart and incredibly tasty and versatile. I make a delicious crock pot pork recipe using tomatillos, although shockingly I’ve never posted the recipe. I will soon, I promise! If you’ve never used tomatillos before, here’s the down and dirty tutorial on what they are and how to prep them.
To make the roasted tomatillo salsa, remove the husks from the tomatillos and rinse them before slicing them in half. Quarter your onion and place it and the tomatillo halves on a sil pat or parchment paper lined baking sheet.
Halve your serrano pepper (or two – but Mister Man doesn’t like things too spicy, so I went easy on him) and remove the ribs and seeds. Discard your ribs and seeds and add them to your tray.
Broil for five minutes, then remove the serrano and flip your tomatillos and onion so the other side can get beautifully charred, as well. Return to the broiler for three minutes, then remove from the oven and let cool a few minutes.
While your tomatillos are roasting, smash your garlic cloves and place them in your blender. Add the chicken stock and lime juice. As the serrano and onion finish roasting, add them, but hold off on the tomatillos. Blend the ingredients, less the tomatillos, until smooth.
Add the tomatillos and pulse until mostly but not entirely blended, being sure to hold down the lid of your blender with a kitchen towel to ensure the pressure built up by the heat doesn’t push the top of your blender and burn you – and make a huge mess.
Once the tomatillo is mostly blended, add your avocado flesh. Pulse again just until blended, and your roasted tomatillo salsa is complete.
The lime juice helps extend the life of the roasted tomatillo salsa, and it adds a great flavor, too, but this is a salsa you want to eat within two or three days max. I like my roasted tomatillo salsa chilled, so I make it first and pop it in the fridge to cool off then serve.
And the verdict? Mister Man loooooooooves the roasted tomatillo salsa. I made him try a bit before telling him what it was or what was in it, and he thought it was perfect with the taquitos. He could taste the lime and the creaminess of the avocado that pairs perfectly with the tartness of the tomatillos. The serrano was not too hot for him, and making it just for me, I’d definitely add two.
The true win here? When I did eventually tell Mister Man what was in the roasted tomatillo salsa, his eyes got wide, but then he simply nodded and kept eating. This from the child who won’t even smell an avocado. Go figure. My litle baby is growing up!
Quick and Easy Mole
As I mentioned, I make a mean chicken en mole. It is one of my all time favorite dishes, but it is a long Sunday afternoon project, so I don’t make it often. Fortunately, it makes a ton, and I freeze it in batches to pull out when I want some, but of course I was out since I haven’t made it in far too long.
That didn’t stop me, and I came up with this simplified recipe for mole that still incorporates many of the important flavors while taking far less time to make. I prefer my “real” mole because anything simmered hour after hour is going to have so much more in depth of taste, but this mole was pretty darn good.
For this, I heat up my pan with a bit of oil and chop onions to sautee. While they’re sauteeing, remove the stems from your dried peppers. The ancho chile is larger and can be broken into chunks to get the seeds out for you to discard. The chipotle peppers are much smaller, so chop off the top with the stem and simply shake out most of the seeds. The remainder you’ll add to your mole.
Once the peppers are ready, add them to your onion to let them soften. Smash your garlic and add this, as well. Add the cinnamon and cumin, and stir to incorporate. Let the mixture cook for two or three minutes until your onions are completely soft – because of the spices added, they won’t be translucent.
Add the can of diced tomatoes, peanut butter, and the chicken stock and stir again.
Go ahead and toast your corn tortillas. And yes, I do truly use my toaster. Just pop them in and when they come up, flip them over and toast what was the top side. they don’t turn as dark as toast, but they get nice and crispy and the toasting adds a flavor your want.
While they’re toasting, chop your Mexican chocolate tablet. If you can’t find Mexican chocolate, use bittersweet chocolate instead, but the Mexican chocolate is perfect – and it’s a great addition to your hot chocolate in the winter, as well.
As soon as the tortillas are toasted, add them and your chopped Mexican chocolate to your pan and stir just a bit to ensure they are covered. Let this simmer for ten or so minutes, adding a touch more chicken stock if it gets too dry.
Add the mixture to your blender along with the sugar, being sure to only fill it a bit of the way up since adding too much hot material like this can really cause problems with the heat creating pressure that will blow off the top of your blender. Again, always remember to use a folded kitchen towel to hold down the blender top while you’re blending hot ingredients. Blend until completely smooth.
Serve immediately. This can also be stored in your fridge for two to three weeks in a tightly sealed container. Or take it to your next party and wow your friends. This was so good slathered on my tamales. I may or may not have hidden a small jar in the back of my fridge so I can enjoy my Delimex tamales with the mole without anyone knowing!
This delicious roasted tomatillo salsa comes together in just minutes and has an amazing flavor that goes well with all sorts of Mexican dishes.
- 1 1/2 lb tomatillos
- 1 small onion, quartered
- 2 serrano peppers
- 3 cloves garlic
- 1-2 T chicken stock
- 2-3 t lime juice
- 1/2 t salt
- 1 avocado
- Remove the husks from your tomatillos and rinse the tomatillos. Slice them in half and lay on a baking sheet covered with a sil pat or parchment paper. Peel and quarter your onion and add to your baking sheet. Halve your serrano peppers, discarding the ribs and seeds. Add to your baking sheet.
- Broil for 5 minutes, removing the serranos at that time. Flip the tomatillos and onion so the other side can char a bit. Return to the oven to broil for another three minutes.
- While the items are roasting, smash your garlic cloves and remove the skin.
- Add the chicken stock, lime juice, salt, garlic, onion, and serrano peppers to your blender. Blend until smooth.
- Turn off your blender and add the tomatillos. Using a kitchen towel to hold down the lid, pulse until mostly blended, maybe ten bursts. Add the flesh of your avocado and pulse again until well mixed.
- Serve immediately, or chill in a tightly sealed container in your fridge. This will last two to three days in the fridge without processing in a water bath for proper canning.
Feel free to use just one serrano if you like things less spicy. Adjust the lime juice to your taste. More lime juice will also reduce the spiciness of the salsa.
- 2 T olive oil
- 1 onion, chopped
- 1 dried ancho chile
- 2 dried chipotle peppers
- 3 cloves garlic, smashed
- 1 t cumin, ground
- ½ t cinnamon
- 1 can diced tomatoes
- ¾ c chicken stock
- 2 T peanut butter
- ½ tablet Mexican chocolate, chopped
- 1 T sugar
- Heat a pan and add oil while you chop your onions. Add onions to the pan and sautee.
- Remove the stems from your dried peppers. Break up the ancho chile as necessary to remove and discard its seeds. Chop off the top with chipotle cihle the stem and simply shake out most of the seeds. The remainder of the chipotle seeds you'll add to your mole.
- Once the peppers are ready, add them to your onion to let them soften. Smash your garlic and add this, as well. Add the cinnamon and cumin, and stir to incorporate. Let the mixture cook for two or three minutes until your onions are completely soft.
- Add the can of diced tomatoes, peanut butter, and the chicken stock and stir again.
- Toast your corn tortillas in your toaster. While they're toasting, chop your Mexican chocolate tablet.
- As soon as the tortillas are toasted, add them and your chopped Mexican chocolate to your pan and stir just a bit to ensure they are covered. Let this simmer for ten or so minutes, adding a touch more chicken stock if it gets too dry.
- Add the mixture to your blender along with the sugar, being sure to only fill it a bit of the way up. Use a folded kitchen towel to hold down the blender top while you're blending hot ingredients. Blend until completely smooth.
Now when I say these are good, you believe me, right? You can see that I bought the box of 56 taquitos, which is the largest Delimex size my Walmart sells. I know my family. In fact, Little Miss broke into it without my knowledge even before I could whip up the dipping sauces to go with anything. I got the box from the freezer and almost dropped them on the floor because she left it like this. But I suppose that’s what a nine year old does, right?
I actually had to tell her that she was not allowed to have them for breakfast. As it is, she’s eating them for lunch and dinner every day now. She didn’t take my leftover spaghetti and meatballs for lunch but taquitos instead. She looked insulted when I told her she couldn’t have taquitos for breakfast, but when pushed, she admitted that had I not told her it was verboten, she would have eaten them.