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Canned chipotles in adobo sauce are a staple in the Milk Street pantry. The chilies (or even just a spoonful of the sauce) are an easy way to add moderate heat and deep, smoky flavor to sauces, meats and sandwiches. They are made by drying and smoking jalapeno peppers, then packing them in a rich sauce made from tomatoes and even more chilies.
When we tried canned varieties, we favored brands that used more tomato in the sauce, such as Embasa or Goya. When shopping, check the ingredients. Tomatoes should be the second or third ingredient listed.
Though canned chipotles in adobo are great, we loved homemade even more; the texture of the chilies is firmer and the sauce is thicker and more robustly flavored. Be sure to use dried morita chipotles, which are shiny and dark. They are smaller, sweeter and smokier than tan-colored meco chipotles, which tend to be leathery and nutty.
dried morita chipotle chilies (about 1¼ ounces), stems removed
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