Chipotle peppers are dry jalapeño peppers that have been smoked. Chipotle peppers originated in Mexico, and most are produced there. Dried chipotles can be stored longer than fresh jalapeños. Popular in Mexico and the United States, dried chipotle peppers give flavour to salsas, sauces, soups and stews, and can be used whole, diced, or made into powder.
Heat water in a pot until almost boiling. Soak the chipotles in the hot water for 20 to 30 minutes or until tender to reconstitute for a recipe.
Remove the seeds and discard. Dice, mince or purée the reconstituted chipotles.
Add the chipotles to soups, stews or sauces. Use chipotles in salsa, refried beans, rice, vinaigrettes and guacamole. Make a chipotle marinade for chicken or steak. See the Resources section of this article for chipotle recipes.
Slice the whole, dried chipotles from the stem to the tip.
Remove the seeds and discard them.
Add the whole chipotles to your recipe. Whole chipotles add a moderate amount of heat to a recipe.
Cover some whole chipotle peppers in warm water. Soak them until they become pliable.
Cut slits around the stem and remove it. Remove the seeds.
Stuff with cheese and bake in the oven at 300°F (150 C) about ten minutes, or until the cheese melts. Use a soft cheese that melts well, such as Neufchatel or Muenster.
Serve the chipotle appetizers with sour cream or plain yoghurt.
Serve hot, spicy chipotle dishes with cold drinks. For milder flavour, remove the seeds before you add the chipotle to a recipe. Add whole chipotles to a recipe for stronger flavour. You can make fresh chipotle chilli powder by cutting chipotles, removing seeds and stems, and grinding in a food processor. Mix 1-1/2 teaspoons of the chipotle powder with one cup of salt in a sealed container and use instead of plain salt to season meats and vegetables. Mix 1/2 teaspoon of chipotle powder to one cup of Mayonnaise to make a chipotle sandwich spread. Chipotle powder can be used in desserts and ice cream with strawberries, peaches or raspberries.
Chipotles are considered medium heat, so add a small amount to avoid an overpowering flavour. Wash your hands after handling chipotles and avoid touching your eyes.