Healthy Dips -

Healthy Dips

Tropical Mango Relish
Yield: 3 cups

The blend of tropical fruits and the salty crunch of a tortilla chip makes this relish a favorite.
For a Mexican twist add to this recipe chopped onions, cilantro, tomatoes or even diced avocado.
If you are not a king to spicy food, you can reduced or omit the Jalapenos.
This is not only good as a dip but you can use it to crown your grilled chicken breast, broiled fish!

1 1/2 cups diced mango
3/4 cup diced papaya
1/2 cup diced pineapple
3/4 cup pineapple juice (if you use canned pineapple, reserved liquid is fine)
1/2 cup orange juice
2 oz. orange liqueur
2 Fresh Jalapeno Peppers seeded and diced
Juice from 1 Lime
Salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup slivered almonds


Place 6 first ingredients in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to simmer, and cook for 10-15 minutes stirring often. When relish begins to thicken, remove from heat. Bring to room temperature.  Add jalapeño, lime juice, and season with salt and pepper to taste.
Place in a sealed container and refrigerate for 3 hours. Add the almonds right before serving, to keep them from getting soggy.

Sweet Roasted Tomatillo and Spicy Chipotle Sauce
Yield: 3 cups

The tart tomatillos, smoky chipotles, and sweet piloncillo (a type of Mexican raw sugar) meld to create an exquisitely balanced sauce with delightful hints of cumin and oregano. It can be used and served as a sauce, or it can be diluted and used to braise meats, poultry, or game, you can call this sauce "Mexican BBQ Sauce"

1-1/2 pounds tomatillos, husked, washed
2 Ancho Chiles, soaked in hot water, then seeded
1-1/2 cup water
4 chipotle chiles in adobo, drained from liquid (whole with seeds from a can)
6 garlic cloves
4 cloves
2 teaspoons dried oregano
2 teaspoons salt
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 tablespoons shaved piloncillo or 1-1/2 tablespoons dark brown sugar plus 2 teaspoons molasses

Boil the tomatillos and Ancho Chile with 1 cup of water until soft (about 4 to 8 minutes). Remove from heat and bring to room temperature. Put tomatillo, chile, and remaining liquid in a blender.  Add garlic, oregano, cloves, salt, cumin, and drained chipotle in blender with the tomatillo mix blending until smooth. (See Note)

Heat the oil in a medium size, heavy saucepan over medium heat. Pour in the tomatillo and chile mixture, then rinse out the blender with the remaining 1/2 cup water and add that to the pan. Bring the sauce to a boil, stirring to incorporate the oil. Adjust the heat so the sauce is simmering.
Stir piloncillo into the sauce and simmer, stirring occasionally until the sauce is shiny and little dots of fat rise to the surface (about 10 minutes). Add water in small amounts if the sauce becomes too thick before turning shiny. The sauce can be prepared up to 2 days in advance and refrigerated.

If using to braise meat, bring to a simmer, adding water as necessary to restore it to consistency, before adding it to the cooked meat.

NOTE: "Blend Until Smooth" means the tomatillos are pureed, but you still should be able to see the little tomatillo seeds. If you blend more-so that the seeds are broken up-the sauce will become gelatinous or cloudy and will take on an unpleasant consistency.

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