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piri piri peppers in Austin, TX?

For Pete's sakes - where in Austin can I find these chiles? I'm slowly becoming obsessed with these Ahab style.

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  1. Since piri piri pimentos (the port. word for chile) are used in Portuguese cooking, try searching here for a thread about portuguese linguiça that was current in the last week or so...there was a link in one of the last posts referring to a website that sells Portuguese foodstuffs. You can get them pickled, but I got a large bag in Portugal of dried ones...they seem very much like the peperoncini i bought in Italy, also dried...very small, almost like a chile pequin. If you can't find piri piri, you might try using the tear-shaped pequin, not the round ones, but hell, they are all very similar...in my opinion. Phoenicia might be a source...or Fiesta in their "ethnic" section.

    1 Reply
    1. re: sambamaster

      I've been making forays out and about in town. So far no dice.

      The pequins, petins, and assorted bird's eye chiles are tasty and some of my favorites but I think the hunt for the peri peri is what's driving me.

      Phoenicia is a good idea - thanks for the suggestion.

      1. re: Kent Wang

        Ana Brasil Não tem piri piri...they do have great malaguetas from n. Brazil which have their own unique magic...if you haven't tried those, do. they are probably related to piri piri since the portuguese were shuttling these peppers back and forth... try some malagueta on beans for a real treat, just the vinegar, or mash a couple of them in some olive oil and drizzle on beans, black or whatever....but be forwarned, these are jet propelled little diabos! (devils) I also looked at Fiesta and didn't see any piri piri there either.

      2. I'm not in Austin, but I'm in the backwoods of Maryland and our local grocery store (gigantic chain which usually doesn't carry anything even remotely interesting) has them at the olive bar. Maybe you'll have similar luck in Texas?

        3 Replies
        1. re: thatfarmgirl

          I haven't had luck finding the peppers. Have you tried talking to the produce folks at Central Market? Even if they don't currently carry them, they may be able to procure them for you as a special order item. They have offered to do that for me when I wanted ostrich steaks. In the meantime, I get my fill with Nando's Peri Peri sauce which I get at my Randall's or thru mailorder. Good luck!

            1. re: hooliganyouth

              I get it at the Randall's on Balcones @ 2222. It's where the hot sauces are, usually near the top shelf.

        2. I love piri piri, especially to make piri piri chicken. I've spent a few years trying to source them and here's what I know. I've found them pickled at the Fresh Plus next door to Asti (watch the expiration dates) and online off Amazon, but found little use for them in that form. Dried I have not found in town, but several online sources from Portuguese food sources. The only sauce I've found is Nando which I've seen at both Specs locations and BBQ Galore. As for fresh plants/peppers, I've asked at both local garden centers and restaurants to no luck. Even online it is difficult, but just found a place that just brought them back in their catalog. They only ship in May and June, but I've put in my order for next year at http://www.thechilewoman.com/ You have to order a minimum of 6 plants I think, so I would gladly share three I'm not going to have room for.

          Glad to see others share an interest and have their eyes out for this pepper. Some new sources for sauce I'll definately keep in mind when my stash from Portugal runs out.

          Best of luck finding what you are looking for.

          2 Replies
          1. re: rollledspleen

            What kind of heat do these pack? Is it more along the lines of pequin/petin/bird's eye short sharp shock heat or good old fashioned stick to your palette hot?

            1. re: hooliganyouth

              Definately the sharp heat. In fact I believe piri piri is a strain of bird's eye peppers. My experience has been when used as a marinade it actually does both. It still has that sharp peak of heat and slowly over several bites an overall heat builds a little.

          2. Have you heard about someone opening a restaurant called Peri Peri in Austin? Dying to hear more about it.