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In search of dried chiles

  • Paul H Feb 21, 2011 03:29 PM
  • 7

I'm looking for a good (& cheap) source of dried chiles, e.g. ancho, pasilla & cascabel.

I assume that the Mission is the best place to go for this search. Does anyone have any recommendations. The bigger the selection, the better!

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  1. If you're looking for Mexican chiles, more fruitful than the Mission would be the supermercados on the Peninsula (since you're down there too), such as Chavez in Redwood City.

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    Chavez Supermarket & Taqueria
    46 5th Ave, Redwood City, CA 94063

    1. There's a lil corner at Casa Lucas Market with bins of bulk chiles, herbs, and spices.

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      Casa Lucas Market
      2934 24th St, San Francisco, CA 94110

      1 Reply
      1. re: Keesey

        I think I've bought all of the chilies the OP mentioned at Casa Lucas.

        About 5 years ago, a pre-bagged Mexican spice & dried chili company hit the market at the Fancy Foods show. We bought a few of their products at the now-closed Yum store on Market at Valencia, and thought the quality of their dried chilies was a real step above the bulk bins at most Mexican supermercados. I saw the same brand recently at Duc Loi supermarket in the Mission, a pan-Asian market with heavy latin influence due to the neighborhood. The brand has a blue/turquoise label across the top of the sealed plastic dried goods sacks in the spice section at the back of the store.

        I was pretty impressed with the cheap prices on organic produce at Duc Loi. Some of it looked long in the tooth, but the broccoli looked like the same stuff Rainbow Grocery gets at 1/3rd the price.

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        Duc Loi Supermarket
        2200 Mission St, San Francisco, CA

      2. I think La Palma has a larger than average selection for SF.

        Tierra Vegetables at the Saturday Ferry Plaza market has the highest quality and best selection, but they're not cheap.

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        La Palma Mexicatessen
        2884 24th St, San Francisco, CA 94110

        1 Reply
        1. re: Robert Lauriston

          I was in La Palma last week. It can't compare to the supermercados in the more heavily Mexican areas. Tierra is a good idea.

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          Tierra Vegetables
          651 Airport Blvd, Santa Rosa, CA 95403

        2. In the South Bay, there are quite a few Latino markets that carry them with a good selection of the various varieties. Cost Plus is another good source and one of the few that stocks chipotles. Don't forget the Web, some good sites for dried and powdered. That's how I found Red Jalapeno powder.

          1. Penzey's has a great selection of dried chiles. They have locations in Menlo Park and Santa Rosa, but I've only ordered from them via their website: http://www.penzeys.com/