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Dec 7, 2012 09:06 AM

Dried whole chiles in Cambridge?

I've seen some threads about finding dried chile peppers at various spots, but none confirming what I'm trying to find: dried whole ancho and pasilla chiles. Anyone seen these in the Cambridge/Somerville area? I know that places like Shaw's and Whole Foods have some dried chiles...

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  1. yes, christina's, on cambridge street in Inman

    6 Replies
    1. re: teezeetoo

      I've been somewhat disappointed by the quality of the chiles I've gotten at Christina's -- I suspect their turnover isn't great. Penzey's in Arlington carries whole ancho and pasilla, and are consistently the best ones I've found hereabouts.

      1. re: Jenny Ondioline

        Never seen dry passilas at Penzey's but their anchos are very good quality.

        1. re: Jenny Ondioline

          I've always had good luck with Christina's whole chiles...they carry some such as negro I can't find easily elsewhere. Somerville Market Basket has some...certainly anchos and pasillas, I think, and the hispanic markets on Broadway in East Somerville, such as Amgio's Market, also have a good selection, probably also the hispanic markets in Union Sq near the MB. I also found some anchos last Saturday at one of the vendors at the Somerville Winter Farmers Market at the Armory on Highland. Can't remember the name, but close to the entrance if you turn to the right. I happened to be at Whole Foods just an hour ago and happened to see a small package of anchos for $6.99! That's outrageous.

          1. re: Madrid

            Quick update, Christina's had a great selection of dried chiles, including ghost peppers, if that's your idea of a good time. Picked up a packet of anchos for $3 and a packet of negro pasillas for $2.50. They also had bottles of Tajin seasoning, which I've been looking everywhere for. Thanks folks :)

          2. re: Jenny Ondioline

            I've had that problem with almost everything I've bought at Christina's. Sometimes you get great stuff, but often it smells like it is months or years old. Penzeys is consistently better quality, better prices, and consistent on inventory.

            I've always thought that Christina's gets way too much love. Yeah, they are often the only local source of things, but the quality, the service, wildly inconsistent inventory, and the general cleanliness of the place leave a lot to be desired.

            1. re: DoubleMan

              Totally agree. So much of the stuff at Christina's just looks stale and dusty.

        2. Did you try Seabra market, Little India, or even Market Basket? MB is surprisingly stocked with ethnic foodstuffs

          5 Replies
          1. re: 5thAndNowhere

            I always forget that MB has an entire Goya aisle! Good idea.

            1. re: Boston_Otter

              I've also seen the dried chiles at the Somerville MB in the produce section, near the latin roots.

              1. re: Madrid

                Yep, they're not in the Goya aisle. The stock is somewhat inconsistent, as with most things at MB. I've purchases Ancho and New Mexico, and I've definitely seen arbol. I think I've also seen/purchased guajillo and pasilla, but I'm less certain about that.

                Also check the Harvest Co-Op. I've purchased Goya-brand chiles there.

                1. re: emannths

                  They've definitely had guajillos there, as i bought some a couple of months ago

                2. re: Madrid

                  Market Basked is well stocked peppers this week. Back near the serranos and jalepenos and the expanded Asian area in the far corner of the produce area.

              1. Harvest Co-Op usually has some dried chillies, not large numbers but a wide selection, they might have the two types that you mention.

                1 Reply
                1. re: steinpilz

                  I think Harvest Coop in Central Square might have jettisoned the dried chillies due to space constraints now that they've moved to the smaller location (still on Mass Ave., across the street from the former location). I couldn't find any while looking on a recent visit. (It could be that I just missed them, however, I didn't actually ask a staff member if they still carried the items.)