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.
- Yield: About 3 cups
- Difficulty: Easy
- Total: 35 mins, plus cooling time
- 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
- 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.
- 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.
- Meanwhile, toast the pumpkin seeds on a baking sheet until just browned, about 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and set aside.
- 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.
- Pour the salsa into a container and stir in the scallions and cilantro. Refrigerate until chilled before serving, about 3 hours.