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Blend ancho chilies and aromatics to make a versatile earthy-smoky salsa

Ancho Chili Salsa Roja

15 minutes

We use ancho chilies, with their earthy, smoky flavor, to up the flavor of a simple salsa. Deep-red anchos are dried ripe poblano chilies. The chilies are harvested green to use fresh, but to make anchos, they're left to ripen until red, developing a sweetness that balances their moderate heat. Left alone, anchos can taste a bit like prunes, but combining them with fresh tomato, garlic and shallot balances their sweetness. The brightness of the raw ingredients emphasizes the chilies' smoky notes. Use this salsa as a dip for tortilla chips, spooned onto tacos or in a marinade for beef, pork or chicken.

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