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Papalote-Inspired Salsa Recipe

Papalote-Inspired Salsa
Difficulty: Easy | Total Time: | Makes: About 3 cups

We love the salsa so much at San Francisco’s Papalote Mexican Grill, we were inspired to create our own version of it. We used a combination of roasted Roma tomatoes, chiles de arbol, and pasilla peppers for the base and added in a little vinegar, scallions, and cilantro for flavor. We put everything in a blender, added pumpkin seeds for a creamy texture, and blended until smooth. Of course this isn’t the real thing, but you can always order some!

Game plan: This salsa will last up to 5 days refrigerated in a container with a tightfitting lid.

This recipe was featured as part of our Build Your Own Burrito Bar.

INGREDIENTS
  • 5 medium Roma tomatoes, cored and halved
  • 10 dried chiles de arbol, stemmed, halved lengthwise, and seeded
  • 2 teaspoons ground dried pasilla peppers
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted hulled pumpkin seeds
  • 3 tablespoons white vinegar
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped scallions
  • 1/4 cup coarsely chopped cilantro
INSTRUCTIONS
  1. Heat the broiler to high and arrange a rack in the middle. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil, then place the tomatoes skin-side up on the baking sheet. Broil the tomatoes until the skins are slightly charred. Remove from the oven and set aside. Adjust the oven temperature to 350°F.
  2. Place the roasted tomatoes in a large stainless steel pan over high heat. Add the chiles de arbol, pasilla peppers, salt, sugar, and water and stir to combine. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat to low, and simmer, stirring often, until the mixture has reduced slightly and thickened, about 20 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, toast the pumpkin seeds on a baking sheet until just browned, about 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and set aside.
  4. Add the vinegar to the tomato mixture and cook for 1 minute. Place the mixture in a blender, add the toasted pumpkin seeds, and blend until smooth.
  5. Pour the salsa into a container and stir in the scallions and cilantro. Refrigerate until chilled before serving, about 3 hours.