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Jun 10, 2000 11:54 PM


  • m

Can anyone suggest a variety of chili that produces a rich flavour plus sensation of heat on the palate as opposed to just searing the back of the throat? I'm presently using some cayenne that's giving an acrid heat at the back of the throat and need to get a more wine-like development of flavor in the mouth from my chillies. Also, does anyone know where to buy real Kashmiri chillies in NY?

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  1. m
    michael Kleinman

    I would assume you know about chipotlé peppers (dried smoked peppers of any kind, but most commonly jalapeño)
    since they have become such a trendy food that Mac Donalds new fast food Mexican chain Chipotlé Grill is named after them.By the way no one at Chipotlé Grill could tell me anything they served that contained Chipotlés. Never the less they are both very flavorfull and very hot. I discovered them in 1986 (before they became trendy) and have been a big hit on the pizza at my pizza shop ever since. I especially like them paired with pineapple because the sweet ,hot and smoky work so well together. I also do a Chipotlé marinade with shrimp and onions which I grill on a Griffo grill, the shrimp in its shell just barly done and the onions almost burnt and serve with rice-it's amazing. There are tons of varieties of fresh peppers that have a lot of flavor comming through with their heat. Banana peppers if you want something a bit mild, little thai peppers are great,try Habenero shredded 2 parts onion 1 part pepper with a touch of sugar added.

    1 Reply
    1. re: michael Kleinman

      I love chipotles from before they were cool. I do a chipotle vinagraitte on black bean and corn salad..great BBQ addition. They arealso great with fruit, i.e raspberry puree with chipotles served over smoked turkey on tortillas with cheese has been received well in this house.

    2. Catafishy,

      I don't know what chilies you have tried before cayenne, but cayenne is especially hot without a lot of chili flavor. In dried chilies, New Mexican chilies (usually available either hot or mild)or California chilies (usually mild) are more like the chilies in chili con carne. they have a lot of chili flavor. Anchos, another dried chili are mild and almost sweet. Japaneses (sp?) are the chilies used in kung-pao etc, they are milder than cayenne, with decent heat, but not especially flavorful. There are many other chilies available in markets catering to ethnics, and of course, more than one kind can be blended together to get an especially rich taste.

      If you want chili flavors, you can also use fresh chilies. Jalapenos and serranos are less hot than cayennes and have flavor. Small Thai chilies are hot but flavorful, and while some people like habaneros, I find them just too hot for most uses. Anaheims and pasilla chilies don't have much heat, but they do have good flavor and are used in such things as chili rellenos.

      Hope some of this is useful.


      1. If you're looking for Kashmiri chilies, try Patel Brothers in Jackson Heights (74th St. betw. Roosevelt & 37th Ave.)

        1. There are so many good chiles available in ny now - no one should be limited to cayenne. Here are some suggestions of delicious types and places to find them (1) "middle east pepper" or aleppo pepper, from syria - has an absolutely outstanding flavor and a moderate amount of heat - you can just keep throwing it into your dish (bean salad, for example) until it tastes right - available at Kalyustan on Lex (28-29) (they also sell excellent pepper paste-made from it at their take-out counter) there is a darker red flaked pepper from Turkey that tastes similar sold at Birlik, the Turkish Grocery in the Brooklyn Chinatown (8th Ave at maybe 59th street);
          (2) other dried chiles at Kalyustan include, in ground form, spanish smoked chile, ancho chile, hungarian and spanish paprika - all full flavored, very fresh and more interesting than cayenne. They also sell a large variety of dried chiles, including, I believe, the Kashmiri dundicut chiles and chipotle, as well as canned chipotle in adobo. Make sure your dried chiles are fresh and free of bugs and debris; the larger chiles like ancho should still be somewhat flexible. (3) latin stores for the dried whole mexican chiles - there are several in my park slope neighborhood which sell a large variety, with good turnover, notably the two Nuevo Faro outlets (4) fresh chiles, habeneros are even in supermarkets now, but I buy mine at the farmers market in the fall. 1 habanero goes a long way due to its heat; the smaller sweet chiles (red and green) sold in hispanic stores have a similar aroma but no heat. Almost any chiles can be tossed, whole and dry into a bag in the freezer; they keep almost indefinitely and can be chopped and seeded much more easily in a frozen condition. The wrinkly green chiles used in chinese stir fries are spicy and tasty but not overwhelming, available in latin stores, supermarkets, chinatown, along with jalapenos and serrano chiles; those little thai "bird peppers" incredibly hot and tasty can be found in indian stores and in chinatown.

          1 Reply
          1. re: jen kalb

            I've used an Internet source for dried chilies, called Farmer's Pick, and found the quality to be really top-notch. Link below.


          2. Thanks soo much to everyone for the information and opinions. I was basically thinking about dried chillies for grinding masalas, which is why I mentioned Kashmiri chillies, but all the suggestions, esp. the mailorder link are most helpful.
            If I have any chili epiphanies soon I'll tell you all about it.

            3 Replies
            1. re: Maria

              Penzeys offers the Kashmiri chilis mailorder, see link below.

              Asian cookbook writers sometimes grouse about the quality/freshness of the dried chilis available in the US - obviously a store like Patel Bros in Jackson Hts or the spice stores around Lex and 28th, with a knowlegeable clientele and high turnover, would be the best local sources for what you seek. BTY, Kalyustan also sells over the web and carries many more exotic items than Penzeys. But if you are here in the city, better to shop in person.


              1. re: jen kalb

                Yes, Penzey's is a wonderful source for spices and dried herbs.

                1. re: jen kalb

                  Yep, Kalustyan's is more my speed. I used to shop there often when I worked at Penn Plaza, but I'm in the Burbs with the Baby now and to know they mailorder is comforting. We used to drive to Sahadi's on Atlantic Ave. with my folks very often too, but the atmosphere has changed drastically, too pseudo-gourmet for us now. We generally rely on Patel's for staples (there's one on Hillside Ave. near Cross I. Pkwy for those of you on LI), but it seems Kalustyan's got them beat for spices altogether, as well as many other items. Thanks.