Why doesn't Chipotle deliver

Chipotle, a smoky chilli specialty

Chipotle - at home between TexMex and gourmet kitchens

If chilli fruits are thin-walled (e.g. Birdeye or Cayenne), they can be preserved by drying. This is not practical for meaty variants, but just like meat or fish, such chilies can be preserved by smoking. The result is a very special smoky-piquant specialty that has decisively shaped the aroma of Mexican and TexMex dishes and is now conquering gourmet cuisine: Chipotle

Are you looking for Chipotle products? Here you will find more than 30 delicious Chipotle products for gourmets and spicy connoisseurs:

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Where does the name Chipotle come from?

The name chili goes back directly to the expression chilli, a word from the Nahuatl language used by the Aztecs. Pochilli means something like "smoked chili", which was later changed to Chilpotle. The Mexicans made Chipotle out of it, but the older spelling can still be found on some South American products today.

Where do the Chipotle come from?

Findings of seeds in caves not far from today's Mexico City show that Native Americans collected and consumed chilli pepper pods around 9,000 years ago. Breeding began a little later, and the question of conservation soon arose. Even the Aztecs knew that certain varieties of thick-fleshed chilies, known today as jalapeños (Chili-DB Info), simply couldn't be preserved by normal air drying. That is why they tried the same thing that had already been successfully practiced with meat and fish: they were dried with the help of smoke.

Traditional smoking of chillies ...

 

In many parts of Mexico smoking is still done today according to the tried and tested method of the ancestors: pits are dug that are connected by an underground tunnel. In one pit a fire is kindled, in the other the chilli pods are placed on a frame made of bamboo, wood or metal. The draft then lets the smoke wipe over the chillies so that they are dried and smoked at the same time. The wood of the mesquite tree is mostly used for smoking, but pecan and fruit tree wood are also suitable.


Mesquite wood (as woodchips and as pieces), a wood often used for chipotle production

Even if all smoked chilies are often referred to as chipotle, the name mostly refers to red-ripened, smoked jalapenos that have been treated in this way. The smoking process gives Chipotle a pleasantly smoky aroma. Because of the loss of water, they are also hotter than fresh jalapenos: While fresh jalapenos have around 500 to 1,000 Scoville units (a measure of chilli heat), depending on the variant and growing area, chipotle are 5,000 to 10,000. This is still little compared to habaneros (several hundred thousand units), but still sharp enough to dose them carefully.

... and the modern version with a smoking oven

 

A real treat

The smoky chilli aroma together with the pleasant spiciness make Chipotle a particularly tasty specialty that can be used in many ways. Numerous Mexican dishes, but also the TexMex cuisine of the American Southwest, give Chipotle their typical flavor. Trendy restaurants such as Mark Miller's famous Coyote Café in New Mexico (USA), or in this country the Santa Fe in Kiel, make extensive use of the smoky pods.

 

Smoky Beans: Smoky and spicy with chipotle, even without meat!

Vegetarians also appreciate chipotle, as a smoky taste can be achieved without smoked meat.

How to use Chipotle

Chipotles are available as whole dry pods or ground into powder. In addition, you can buy Chipotle in Adobo in every supermarket in Mexico - whole Chipotle pods in a specially seasoned thick vinegar-tomato sauce. More on that later.

Chipotle powder is good for seasoning sauces and for so-called rubs, spice mixtures for rubbing fish, meat (and sometimes vegetables) before grilling or roasting. In recipes, a chipotle pod can be replaced with a teaspoon of chipotle powder.

Whole chipotle pods can be chopped dry with scissors or a knife. If you want to grind them into powder, you must first dry the pods completely in the oven or in the dehydrator. If you plan to grind dried chillies into powder often, you are well advised to use an inexpensive electric coffee grinder that is used exclusively for this purpose (if you should grind coffee in it again later, it is guaranteed to taste a little unfamiliar).

Most of the time, whole chipotles are used rehydrated. Remove the stems and soak the chillies in warm water for about half an hour. This causes the pods to swell up and become soft, so that - depending on the recipe - they can simply be chopped up with a knife, or sliced, free of seeds and filled.

Attention: Due to the drying and smoking, these chillies are quite concentrated in taste and quite hot - be careful when dosing! Wear gloves when chopping chipotle pods; avoid inhaling chipotle powder.

Dry chipotle pods shouldn't be bone dry and crumble, but should still be flexible due to a certain amount of residual moisture. As with all dried chillies (and chilli powder), it is advisable to keep them airtight in a dark, cool place - e.g. B. in double zip-lock bags or in a screw-top glass in the refrigerator.

Make Chipotle yourself?

Of course it has we are interested in whether you can manufacture Chipotles yourself, and in Harald's work The Chili Pepper Book 2.0 he has already reported on the first experiments.

In summary, smoke and a low, uniform temperature over a period of several days are difficult to achieve with a traditional charcoal grill. The chillies have a strong smoky taste, but they do not dry enough for preservation; here you have to help with a dehydrator. On the other hand, the Aromanur becomes really authentic with mesquite or pecan wood; Fortunately, both are now available in specialist grill shops.

Alternatively, we had chillies smoked in a fish smokehouse for a week. The aroma was quite interesting, but due to the beech smoke it was more reminiscent of ham or smoked fish ...

A few years have passed by now, and with a bit of luck you can also get mesquite wood in our grill accessories trade (see also our article on smoker wood). However, there are so many excellent Chipotle products that the question arises whether it is worth the effort to make your own. Chipotle in Adobo in particular is a very versatile product.

Fortunately, eager Pepperworld visitors have not been discouraged - read here "Make Chipotles yourself", Bernd Häussler's report.
Small update: We ourselves continued to experiment and made an attachment for our barbecue smoker fireplace to smoke chilli. The result was also positive, here is our report 🙂

Chipotle products in the hot shop

There are innumerable Chipotle products out there. One of the sources with a great variety of 100% natural Products is the Pepperworld Hot Shop. If you need some initial inspiration as to what culinary delicacies for hot connoisseurs are made from the smoked chillies, here is an initial overview:

Whole Chipotle Pods - Occasionally, you can buy whole Chipotle pods in this country, mostly online.

Chipotle powder - Already ground chipotle pods; ideal for quick seasoning of dishes; also found on the web.

Chipotle seasoning mixes - Such as FireSpreader Smoky Chipotle from the Pepperworld Hot Shop. Brings more fire with Habanero, additional ingredients make it a balanced smoky universal flavor.

Chipotle in Adobo Sauce - Anyone who browses through Mexican or TexMex cookbooks or searches for relevant recipes on the Internet will often come across chipotle as an ingredient in Adobo sauce. These are whole chipotle pods in a can, pickled in a thick vinegar and tomato sauce. This is a convenient way of preparation, because the pods are soft due to the moisture they have absorbed and are easy to process. The sauce has absorbed much of the aroma and fire of the chillies and is therefore often used in recipes as well. In Mexico you can find Chipotles Adobados in a can in every supermarket, but in this country you don't have to do without this important ingredient, you will also find it here in the Pepperworld Hot Shop

 

From Mexico: Chipotle in Adobo Sauce

Hot tips for Chipotle in Adobo Sauce: You can conjure up a delicious sauce in no time by mixing 1 tablespoon of the Adobo sauce with 8 tablespoons of good mayonnaise, 1 tablespoon of freshly chopped coriander (cilantro) and 2 teaspoons of chopped mild onion. Perfect for seafood, turkey burgers and much more! And here you can read how you can make your own Chipotle in Adobo Sauce!

Hot sauce - Hot sauces are handy for giving your own Mexican and Southwestern dishes the typical smoked chipotle taste with little effort; especially for seasoning at the table.

A typical representative of this hot sauce direction is Melinda’s Chipotle. The sauce also goes well with hearty grilled meat, to spice up gravy, or simply to snack on tortilla chips. The same applies to Ring of Fire Chipotle & Roasted Garlic, a gourmet California sauce made with habanero, smoky chipotle, and roasted garlic. Tabasco® Chipotle differs from most other sauces in that the jalapenos are not smoked over mesquite but pecan wood, which results in a different flavor. Which sauce you prefer is of course a matter of taste, they are actually all interesting. And of course "smoky".

Salsa - Fortunately, there are also some salsas that benefit from the smoky chipotle aroma, for example Pain is Good Salsa # 218 Smokey Chipotle, with chipotle, fresh jalapeno pods, tomatoes, onions, garlic and spices, or - even more authentic - Xochitl Chipotle Salsa

Literature -Chipotle Pepper Pantry: With this paperback, “Pepper-Pope” DaveDeWitt provides a wealth of information about Chipotle, plus lots of delicious, tried and tested recipes. Paperback, approx. 90 pages, English.

Recipes

  • Julio’s Salpicón - Mexican meat salad (recipe)
  • Pepperworld Barbecue Sauce - The hit with all fish and meat dishes (recipe)
  • Smoky salsa - Get its special aroma and "bite" from Chipotle (recipe)
  • Smoky Mary - The cocktail classic with a difference (recipe)
  • grilled chicken breast - This time with honey chipotle sauce (recipe)
  • Smoky beans - Quick vegetarian bean dish with a kick (recipe)
  • Marinated chipotle zucchini - Vegetarian can be so delicious! (Recipe)
  • Chipotle Mini Corn Dogs - US snack, "pepped up" by us with chipotle (recipe)
  • Chipotle in Adobo sauce - If you have a kettle grill, you can make it yourself! (Recipe)
  • Chipotle Tomato Hot Sauce - with chipotle smoked in the kettle grill (recipe)