This is a rich, creamy, and subtly spiced sauce that is good with shellfish, grilled fish or poultry.


  2 shallots, quartered

   3 garlic cloves, cut in half

   6 serrano chilies, stemmed and seeded

   2 cups heavy cream

   3 tablespoons all-purpose flour

   2 small bunches fresh cilantro leaves, rinsed

   5 spinach leaves, rinsed

   3 cups chicken stock, preferably homemade

   Lime juice




    Put the shallots, garlic, chilies, cream, flour, cilantro and spinach in a blender jar. Blend on high speed until very smooth. Stir the cream mixture into the chicken stock Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until the sauce is smooth and coats a spoon, about 3 to 4 minutes. Season to taste with fresh lime juice, salt and pepper.


    NOTE. If using a canned chicken broth, bring two 14 1/2- ounce cans of broth with 2 tablespoons chopped celery, 2 tablespoons chopped carrot, 1/4 onion, sliced, and 2 parsley stems to a boil in a medium saucepan. Boil for 5 minutes, then strain and return to the same saucepan.