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Chili Garlic Salsa

This recipe of chili garlic salsa is originally from Oaxaca and it is very simple but very savory. The Oaxacan gastronomy is rich in flavors, aromas and ingredients. In fact it keeps traditions and secrets from the Prehispanic period but it was also one of the regions that received the most influence from the Europeans.

Definitely any preparation that comes to us from Oaxaca, is worth trying. In this case the salsa requires few ingredients and among them figures the costeno pepper; a native chili of Oaxaca and Guerrero. The salsa preparation is quick and when you taste it you can alway perceive the peculiar flavor of the garlic combined with the spiciness of the costeno pepper.

It is a potent salsa and perfect for accompanying any fish or shellfish, like some crab tostadas or some shrimps to the vinaigrette.

About the Recipe

  • In the preparation of this salsa you are going to roast, fry and blend ingredients – although there are many activities is not complicated to make.
  • The original recipe is prepared with costeno pepper. If you don’t get it, don’t worry because they can be substituted for 5 guajillo peppers (1.7 oz). The result will be very similar, only a little bit less spicy.
  • To give more flavor to the salsa lard is used but vegetable shortening could also be used.
  • If you have 10 minutes you can prepare this salsa.
  • This recipe yields 1½ cups.


  • 5 Garlic cloves with skin (.7 oz)
  • 5 Costeno Peppers (1.7 oz)
  • 3 Tomatoes (21.1 oz)
  • 1 tablespoon of Lard
  • 1/2 tablespoon of Salt

  • Cookware

  • 1 Frying Pan
  • 1 Griddle
  • 1 Blender
  • 1 Bowl
  • 1 Chopping Board
  • 1 Tongs
  • 1 Turner
  • 1 Strainer
  • 1 Knife

  • Directions

    Roast the Garlic and the Tomato

    1. Put on a griddle over medium heat:
    • 5 Garlic cloves with skin.
    • 3 Tomatoes.

    1. Roast the griddle ingredients for about 2 minutes, until all their sides are well roasted; move them regularly with some tongs.
    2. Transfer from the griddle to a blender, with the tongs, the tomatoes that were roasted; then reserve.
    3. Remove from the griddle the garlic cloves and wait for them to cool a little.
    4. Peel the garlic cloves that were roasted, then put them in the blender and reserve.

    Fry and Blend

    1. Heat in a frying pan over low heat 1 tablespoon of lard.
    2. Incorporate in the frying pan 5 costeno peppers and fry them for about 2 minutes, until they are lightly fried; stir regularly.

    If you want a milder salsa you can remove the veins and the seeds of some or of all the costeno peppers.

    1. Transfer from the frying pan to the blender the chilies that were fried.
    2. Also add in the blender 1/2 tablespoon of salt and blend very well the ingredients.
    3. Strain over a bowl the chili garlic salsa.

    A Perfect Combination!

    Recommendation: The Oaxacan recipe book gives us wonderful recipes, which are very original in ingredients and preparation – a good example is the chintextle salsa.

    Did you like the Garlic Salsa?  

    Mexican Dips

    Radish Dip
    Tuna Chipotle Dip
    Poblano Pepper Dip
    Black Bean Dip
    Coriander Jelly Dip

    These are the guajillo peppers that can be used if you don’t find the costeno peppers.

    To roast the ingredients some good tongs like the OXO are needed.

    Know more about Oaxaca with this interesting book.