HOME > Chowhound > Ontario (inc. Toronto) >
Brewing beer, curing meat, or making cheese? Tell us about it


picante Sep 7, 2006 12:56 AM

I just came back from Mexico and would love to try making some of these amazing dishes. That is until I saw what ingredients were needed. Can anyone me me find these in Toronto. A monumentous task I am sure.
t (:

  1. Kagemusha Sep 7, 2006 12:58 AM

    What, specifically, are you looking for??? That might help us help you.

    4 Replies
    1. re: Kagemusha
      picante Sep 7, 2006 04:16 PM

      Thanks for the reply and please accept my apology. My recipe calls for some very specific peppers that cannot be found in your local grocery store. As well, I am trying to find authentic nachos and not the ones we find in NA. Any help would be appreciated.

      1. re: picante
        tuqueboy Sep 7, 2006 09:12 PM

        first of all, ``authentic'' nachos don't exist in mexican cuisine -- they're tex-mex. second of all, why don't you write the name of the ``very specific'' peppers? is there some deep, dark secret you're hiding about these peppers?

        1. re: tuqueboy
          GGS Sep 7, 2006 11:14 PM

          Perhaps the OP had chilaquiles and they are kind of nacho-ee but much better.

          1. re: tuqueboy
            Tout Garni Sep 8, 2006 05:18 PM

            authentic nachos are called totopos in Mexico. Generally, they're made by deep frying corn tortillas. You can also leave them out to get stale and hard on their own. Perola's in Kensington sells them by the kilo (much cheaper than grocery stores). You can also make your own with Maiseca (sp?) a corn flour mix to which you add water and slap out tortillas that are cooked on a hot grill.

      2. n
        Nyleve Sep 7, 2006 01:24 AM

        There are a couple of hispanic grocery stores in Kensington Market. One is on Augusta just south of Baldwin, the other (Perolas?) is just north of Baldwin. Also there are some Mexican ingredients at House of Spice - also on Augusta near Baldwin.

        1 Reply
        1. re: Nyleve
          Mila Sep 7, 2006 05:44 PM

          I would definitely check out Kensington for dried chiles. At both Perola and Mexican Dry Goods stores I have found anchos, amarillas (sp?), cascabel, pasilla and much more. I've been looking for Cascabel but haven't found them yet.

        2. q
          qtxniki Sep 7, 2006 04:53 AM

          I would second Kensington. But we cant help ya out, until we know what ya need.

          1. janetofreno Sep 7, 2006 05:11 AM

            Again, it would be useful to know what ingredients you need...for example: corn tortillas may only be available at a Mexican food store in Toronto (here they are available at the local grocery, but that's here...). However, keep in mind that many of the spices and herbs may be found in Asian food stores. I have found a fairly close similarity between East Indian and Mexican spices: cumin, coriander, chilis etc. Cilantro may be called "Chinese Parsley" or "fresh coriander."

            1. a
              Atahualpa Sep 7, 2006 03:25 PM

              Hi Picante, as others have noted, we really need to know what a few of the things you need are specifically.

              But, here is some general advice:

              1. Go to Kensignton market. There are a variety of Mexican stores and they have a surprising amount of stuff -- despite their size.

              2. House of spice is good too -- but, they are currently renovating and their stock is a little low even though they stayed open during the work. They should be back to normal soon (if not already).

              3. Don't dismiss your local grocery story. I have seen Corn Tortillas in Dominion on occassion and at Sun Valley on the Danforth all the time. Basics like cumin and coriander are in every grocer. Thay'll probably also have canned chipotles in adobo and a few other things.

              4. There is a store in the basement of the St. Lawrence market (in the south market open Tues-Sat) that has all the chiles you'll need, plus a lot of canned goods (including chipotles, pablanos, etc.), and even a few of the harder to find spices. They are in the north part of the basement in the middle (beside the drygoods seller that is out in the open -- near the tea and coffee store, chinese takeaway and the fruit and vegetable stand -- the one that sells the thai basil and fresh kefir leaves).

              5. A few of the herbs are cross used in Vietnamese or Chinese food. For Mexican Coriander (Eryngium foetidum) try a Vietnamese grocer -- its called Ngo Gai in Vietnamese and called Saw-tooth herb in the English part of signs in Asian markets. Also, dried shrimp, tamarind pods, and cane sugar might be easier to find in an Asian market. The mexican salted plums can be (in a very haphazard way) substituted for with Umeboshi (japanese wet rather than dried salted plums).

              Hope that Helps.

              2 Replies
              1. re: Atahualpa
                picante Sep 7, 2006 04:18 PM

                Thanks for the reply and please accept my apology. My recipe calls for some very specific peppers that cannot be found in your local grocery store. As well, I am trying to find authentic nachos and not the ones we find in NA. Any help would be appreciated.

                1. re: picante
                  julesrules Sep 7, 2006 07:50 PM

                  Authentic nachos???

                  My impression in Mexico was that they made chips by frying cut-up tortillas. You would have to do that yourself.

              2. Kagemusha Sep 7, 2006 04:22 PM

                Guess Picante won't respond. Try Loblaws/No Frills. Many of the bigger stores have a good selection of Herdez/San Marcos canned/bottled sauces and condiments and occasionally fresh chiles. I've been getting poblanos from the big new warehouse NG store at Steeles/Hurontario in Brampton.

                1. Kagemusha Sep 7, 2006 07:01 PM

                  Dios mio, Picante, is there some reason why you can't name the type of chile you're after? Just maybe perhaps someone here can help if you tell us what you're after!?

                  1. a
                    Atahualpa Sep 8, 2006 05:36 AM

                    For peppers try Kensington or the shop in the St. Lawrence market I mentioned.

                    Show Hidden Posts