The first appetizer or ‘antojito’ from our ‘Central Region of Mexico Menu‘ was ‘Chalupitas de pollo poblanos con dos salsas’.
Two different salsas were prepared: a salsa verde (green sauce) made with tomatillos, serrano chiles, onion, garlic and cilantro; and a salsa roja with red plum tomatoes replacing the tomatillos, guajillo and ancho chiles replacing the serranos, and no cilantro.
Los Chiles: Serrano chiles (green) for the salsa verde and ancho chiles (dried and dark) for the salsa roja.
The Green Sauce / Salsa verde
Tomatillos: according to Rosanna, try to buy tomatillos when the husk is separated from the tomatillo, otherwise they are not yet ripe.
Tomatillos MUST be cooked – I didn’t know that! Dehusk and simmer the tomatillos until they are soft, but NOT until they burst.
Blend the cooked tomatillos with a 1/4 of chopped small onion, 2 mashed cloves of garlic, 3 chopped and de-seeded serrano chiles, a ‘bunch’ of chopped cilantro and a small amount of water.
Put the blended mixture into a small pot, add salt to taste and simmer until turns less bright.
The Red Sauce / Salsa roja
Lightly toast 10 guajillo chiles in a dry fry pan; then transfer to a bowl and cover with boiling water for about 20 minutes. Remove the stems and seeds. Do the same with 3 ancho chiles.
Now add 2 cups chopped tomatoes, 1/4 of a chopped small onion, 1 mashed clove of garlic, along with one cup of the chile soaking liquid.
After being blended, the salsa roja goes into a pot with some salt to taste, and is simmered until cooked.
The salsas were smeared on tortillas and shredded chicken added on top.
The whole shebang was passed through hot oil.
The chalupitas were then placed on paper towels to blot off the excess oil.
Topped with some diced onion, folded into chalupitas (little canoes) and eaten with the hands, these are a traditional Mexican snack.
You might enjoy these snacks in Coyoacán, a suburb of Mexico City.