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Native to Mexico these chiles are also known as moritas, moras and Colorado chile peppers. Chipotles are fully ripened jalapenos, meaning they’ve been allowed to mature and turn red on the vine. They are dried by smoking and it takes about 10 pounds of fresh peppers to make one pound of dried. They register about 6 on heat scale of 1 to 10.

Smoked chiles originated in the ancient civilization of Teotihuacán, north of present-day Mexico City. Jalapeños would not dry in the sun without their thick skins rotting first. However, like meats, it was learned they could be preserved by the process known as smoke-drying.

When using dried chiles, you can opt to toast them first for added flavor and re-hydrate them by soaking in hot tap water for about 20 minutes. Don’t soak any longer or they can become bitter. Use them to make salsas, sauces and condiments. Great with chicken, pork and also beef. They offer a rich, smoky flavor and a nice bit of heat. Use sparingly at first and build toward the best heat level for you.

Chipotles are native to Mexico.
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