Chipotle is a dried and smoked jalapeño that makes a dish sweet, spicy and savoury. Their smoky notes and medium heat can make even the vegetables taste meaty or grilled. They can also add a lot of essence to the final dish. It is not only used in Mexican or Latin American dishes, but can also be sprinkled on raw foods for a dash of flavour. You can also add this powder in desserts, thanks to its complex notes and ability to spice up anything and everything.
Origin of Chipotle
Even though today you can find chipotle in every part of the world, the spice originated in Central America and Mexico. It was mainly cultivated in Chihuahua in Mexico and also in Oaxaca, Veracruz, and Sinaloa.
What is Chipotle Spice?
Chipotle is a technique used to dry and smoke jalapeños as a food preservation method used back in the day, even before the Aztecs. The name, chipotle even means “smoked Chile.” Legend has it that Christopher Columbus found chipotle on one of his trips to the new world and he brought the spice back with him to Spain. From there it later spread to parts of Europe, India, and even as far as Australia.
Today chipotles are still predominantly from Mexico but they are also produced in United States. Many people all over the world use this spice to add medium heat to their dishes. One can add them to salsas, scrambled eggs, picked veggies, cooked sauces, and even brownies. Common use of Chipotle Australia cuisine is in adobo sauce. It is a rich marinade of dried chilies, tomatoes, onions, vinegar, brown sugar, garlic, and many other spices.
The most common traditional uses of chipotle include grilled chicken recipes, black beans, chicken in tomato-chipotle sauce, mole sauce, adobo sauce etc. You can pair it with fish tacos, bean soup, tomatillo salsa, pimento cheese etc. Chipotle pairs incredibly well with certain spices such as tomato powder, oregano, cumin, annatto, and ginger.
Some Recipe Ideas
Here are some ways to use chipotle in your daily food and dishes to spice things up.
- Want to make your beer extra spicy? Mix equal parts of lemon and chipotle and gave your favourite brew that extra zing.
- You can also stir ground chipotle in red wine vinegar and serve it on the side of deep fried chicken wings.
- If you are preparing shakshuka at home, you can season the tomato sauce with ground chipotle and crack open some eggs into the mix.
Chipotle has a rich and smoky taste with nutty notes that can bring out latent flavours in any dish. Chipotle flavour is not only famous in Mexico and United States but has also made in-roads in Australian cuisine. You can use it in soups, casseroles, and stews. Not only does it enhance taste but also offer many health benefits such as weight loss and prevention against intestinal diseases.