Caldo de Cameron Seco

The Guajillo (wha-hee-oh) chile is the most common dried chile in Mexico after the Ancho. The flavor of the Guajillo is distinct, slightly fruity with a strong piney, berry under taste. Guajillo flavors dished easily so a little goes a long way. This chile is between a 2-4 on the heat scale of 1-10. Guajillo, combined with the Passilla and Ancho, form the holy trinity of chiles used to prepare the traditional mole sauces.

Suggested Use:
A mildly hot chile. Use in sauces, salsa, soups and your favorite chile. A little goes a long way.

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1/2 pound of Mexican dried shrimp
2-3 oz dried Guajillo chiles
1 Tbsp Mexican oregano
1 ripe tomato, diced
1 Tbsp Mexican oregano
1 ripe tomato, diced
3 garlic cloves
2 bay leaves
1/2 small onion, roughly chopped
1 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp cayenne…optional
3 carrots, sliced
1-2 diced potatoes
2 celery stalks sliced
A handful of green beans
1/2 head small cauliflower
1 more tomato, diced
1/2 onion, sauteed
1 jalapeno, sliced or diced…optional
2 Tbsp oil
Limes and cilantro for garnish


Cover the shrimp with cold water and let them sit for 10-15 minutes. Drain the shrimp, rinse them and place them in a medium pot. Cover the shrimp with 5 cups of water and bring to a simmer over med. high heat, then turn down to a slow simmer for 10 minutes. Strain the broth reserving both the broth and the shrimp. Allow to cool.

Once the shrimp have cooled remove the heads, tails and legs.

Remove the stems and seeds from the chiles and place them on a hot “comal”. I do not own a “comal” so a hot skillet works just fine. Toast lightly until they change color a bit…just about 10-15 seconds per side. Place the chiles, tomatoes, garlic, onion, oregano, cumin, cayenne in a saucepan and cover with water. Bring to almost boil and turn down to a slow simmer for 15 minutes. Get your stick blender out and puree until smooth, or use your regular blender or processor.

Over medium heat add 2 Tbsp oil (olive is good) to a large soup pot. Strain the chili puree over the oil.

NOTE…use a regular strainer and push all the goodness through. You should have just the tough bits left in the strainer.

Add your cumin and cayenne if using. Simmer the sauce for 10 minutes over medium heat allowing the sauce to season and thicken.

Add the shrimp, broth, carrots, green beans, jalapeno, 1/2 sauteed onion to the chili puree and let simmer for 10-15 minutes until carrots are tender. Also add in the cauliflower towards the end because you don’t want it to fall apart.

Serve the soup with wedges of lime, chopped cilantro and some fresh diced jalapeno.