Basic Yucatecan Tomato Sauce

Basic Yucatecan Tomato Sauce

2 cups
Pati Jinich
Course: Sauce
Cuisine: Mexican
Keyword: chiltomate, cilantro, habanero, onion, pati's mexican table, Tomatoes, Yucatán Peninsula
Author:Pati Jinich
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Basic Yucatecan Tomato Sauce recipe from Pati's Mexican Table Season 5, Episode 2 “Mérida: Exploring with the Locals”


  • 1 pound ripe tomatoes
  • 1/4 white onion
  • 1 whole habanero chile, optional
  • 1 cup coarsely chopped cilantro leaves and upper stems
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher or coarse sea salt, or to taste

To Prepare

  • Heat a comal over medium heat and place the tomatoes, quarter onion and whole habanero (if using) on it, and toast for 10 to 12 minutes, flipping once in between, until completely charred. Alternatively, place on a baking sheet under the broiler, and broil for 10 to 12 minutes, flipping once, until completely roasted. Remove from the heat and let cool.
  • Chop the charred onion, as well as the habanero, removing its seeds.
  • Completely mash the tomatoes in a molcajete, and incorporate the onion, cilantro, and salt.
  • First, add half of the habanero and mash until well mixed. Taste for heat and add more habanero if desired.
  • Alternatively, put the ingredients in a blender or food processor and process until fully combined but still chunky.

4 comments on “Basic Yucatecan Tomato Sauce

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  1. This is my new Monday night favorite. I make it Sunday and let it rest until Monday giving the flavors a chance to meld. So good! Oh! I also top with a dollar of sour cream 😋