This spicy, earthy ancho chile sauce would be delicious served with roasted chicken as well. Make it a meal: Serve alongside Cheese Grits.

EatingWell Test Kitchen
Source: EatingWell Magazine, January/February 1997


Ancho chile sauce


Instructions Checklist
  • To make sauce: Tear chiles into long strips. Discard stems and seeds. Heat a large heavy skillet over medium heat. Toast chiles, pressing down with a wide spatula and turning once or twice, until they give off a roasted aroma, about 2 minutes. Transfer the chiles to a bowl. Add boiling water to cover. Let sit until softened, about 20 minutes. Drain.

  • Combine the softened chiles, broth, garlic, tomato paste, sugar and oregano in a blender. Blend until very smooth. (If the mixture is too thick, add just enough water to give the sauce a smooth consistency.)

  • Heat oil in a medium heavy-bottomed saucepan over low heat. Add chile puree and cook, stirring constantly, until sauce has darkened and thickened slightly, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and strain through a fine sieve. Adjust seasonings with salt and more sugar, if desired.

  • To grill venison: Preheat a grill or heat a cast-iron grill pan or skillet over high heat. Rub venison chops on both sides with garlic and brush lightly with oil. Season with salt and pepper.

  • Grill or sear the chops until browned on the outside but still pink in the center, 1 to 2 minutes per side.


Make Ahead Tip: Cover and refrigerate the sauce (Steps 1-3) up to 1 week ahead. Bring to a simmer before serving.

Nutrition Facts

261 calories; protein 41g 82% DV; carbohydrates 8g 3% DV; exchange other carbs 0.5; dietary fiber 2.7g 11% DV; sugars 1.2g; fat 6.6g 10% DV; saturated fat 1.8g 9% DV; cholesterol 145.1mg 48% DV; vitamin a iu 2381.8IU 48% DV; vitamin c 1.5mg 2% DV; folate 15mcg 4% DV; calcium 20.8mg 2% DV; iron 7.2mg 40% DV; magnesium 52.8mg 19% DV; potassium 837.1mg 23% DV; sodium 240.2mg 10% DV; thiamin 0.4mg 40% DV; added sugar 1g.