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Chipotles in Adobo Sauce - for Jean a...

MEAN_CHEF's picture

An essential pantry staple with 101 uses. Those who don't know what I'm talking about can ignore this recipe and go back to making grits or some other flavorless concoction.

*10 chipotles stemmed and slit lengthwise.
*1/3 cup sliced WHITE onion.
*5 T apple cider vinegar.
*2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced.
*4 T catsup.
*1/4 tsp kosher salt.
*3 cups water.

Put all ingredients in stainless saucepan, cover, cook on very low for 1-1 1/2 hours or until chiles are soft and liquid is reduced to 1 cup.
Cool. Will keep in airtight container in fridge for about 1 month. For ease of use, I run mine through a blender prior to storage.

Some of the nicest chipotles(not necessarily the cheapest) I have gotten are from Penzey's. Bueno Foods is another good source for all dried chiles at a good price.

Jean_'s picture

(post #60159, reply #1 of 29)

I'll try it soon, thanks. Have you ever added cumin, coriander and a little cinnamon?

cany's picture

(post #60159, reply #2 of 29)

Mean Chef, I have a somewhat anti-American attitude about catsup--could one substitute tomato puree and a bit of sugar?

Your recipe sounds delightful, however, and I think I might try adding some fresh cilantro.


kai_'s picture

(post #60159, reply #3 of 29)

Oh no! Do NOT trash grits! LOL they are delish--you just need to add LOTS of butter or salt and pepper or horseradish or salsa or...some people like them with maple syrup or preserves. Like oatmeal, which I grew up with, seasoned with sweet stuff, I've learned to love grits and oatmeal with other seasonings. (Face it, neither have much taste on their own.)

However, your recipe does sound divine to the max. Thanks!

MEAN_CHEF's picture

(post #60159, reply #4 of 29)

Don't add anything to the recipe. Chipotle in adobo sauce is intended to be added to recipes as an ingredient. If your recipe (sauce , salsa, stew, soup,etc) demands cumin, cilantro, coriander or cinnamon add it to the final recipe instead.

KEN's picture

(post #60159, reply #5 of 29)

I have a very similar concoction that I've been using for a good number of years. You are correct in leaving it in its simplified form, its uses are far more versatile.

And although not entirely in response to your post, grits, indeed, are foul. (Sorry, Carolina)

Gave up trying to make mush taste good,

Carolina's picture

(post #60159, reply #6 of 29)

"Those who don't
know what I'm talking about can ignore this recipe and go
back to making grits or some other flavorless concoction."

Darlin', there's a difference between not knowing and not
i wanting
to know. :-P~

George_W._Carpenter's picture

(post #60159, reply #7 of 29)

Wow, and all this time I've been adding Chipotles
in Adobo right out of the jar (Don Alfonso's) to my grits... Next I expect the secret of Chimayo Salsa to be revealed. "Purchase jar, open." As a traditional Mexican recipe, I am curious as to the
availability of stainless steel pots, and food processors in rural Mexico.
Mocajete anyone?

Recipe for a good chef: Less Lip, more substance, gracious manners.

kai_'s picture

(post #60159, reply #8 of 29)

Hi Ken,

You might think grits are "foul," but I think they are merely rather bland--like some white flour-based pastas, white rice (not jasmine or basmati, however), white bread (not sourdough), and, for majorly tasteless--tofu. But some things are an acquired taste, or texture. I also think baked potatoes are rather bland. On all these things, I like (well, I "need") something--sauce, or seasonings, or both.

I was really surprised that, on a cruise between San Diego and Ensenada, one of the most popular breakfast foods was grits. Granted, some folks might have topped them with ham or very fatty bacon...Try some with salted butter and pepper sometime; you might change your mind.

(If someone can document that grits have as little nutritive value as white bread, I will reconsider before I pile the next plateful.)



Rebecca's picture

(post #60159, reply #9 of 29)

Thanks for the chipotles recipe. I can't get them in the stores around here (CT) & I'd like to use them more often. I've been hoarding a jar of Don Alfonso's; now I'll use it freely & make homemade next time. BTW, I sencond the opinion of Penzey's chipotles.

Carolina's picture

(post #60159, reply #10 of 29)

>(If someone can document that grits have as little nutritive value as white bread, I
will reconsider before I pile the next plateful.)


Buy only stone ground grits, not old-fashioned, not quick-grits, and heaven forbid NOT instant-grits. Stone ground grits are made by grinding the whole dried kernel, the germ as well as the starchy endosperm. They also have alot more taste than the other types of grits. A note of caution: Because they are made from whole corn, stone ground grits contain the kernel oil and will turn rancid quickly. Store them in your freezer.

One of our favorite Sunday night suppers is Shrimp and Grits. Now
i that's
gooooood eating!

dixie_'s picture

(post #60159, reply #11 of 29)

Mean Chef - do you ever smoke the peppers yourself for this recipe?

Sandra_'s picture

(post #60159, reply #12 of 29)

MC -- I may take a small supply of this to a Robbie Burns Dinner to disguise the taste of the inevitable haggis. (How's that for fusion cuisine!)

Jean_'s picture

(post #60159, reply #13 of 29)

His doctor told him to quit smoking that stuff. ;-)

KEN's picture

(post #60159, reply #14 of 29)


Please note that I intended no offense. Back in the old forum I mentioned that I lived in Louisiana for years but never acquired the taste of grits. I think it has more to do with textures. In fact, my mother says I used to spit out the baby foods that had similar textures. I have, over the years, learned to acquire new tastes and even overcome some of the texture dislikes; coconut being an example (love the stuff now).

Grits are an important part of the breakfast tradition in the South and I have no intentions of making light of that fact. But, I still think they are
b very

However, based on Carolina's and your posts maybe I'll be brave and try them again. I'll be sure to get the stone ground variety, smother them with butter, bacon, pepper and Chipolte sauce. (At least for starters).

Cannot believe you talked me into this,

MEAN_CHEF's picture

(post #60159, reply #15 of 29)


MEAN_CHEF's picture

(post #60159, reply #16 of 29)

Nothing could make that crap taste good.

MEAN_CHEF's picture

(post #60159, reply #17 of 29)

You can get lots of things in cans and jars. That doesn't mean that they are any good. You don't need to buy Chimayo salsa anymore either. You could make it yourself - tastes mucho better fresh.
Since there is no mention of a food processor in the recipe, whether or not they exist in Mexico is not relevant. If you would prefer to use an aluminum pot, be my guest. Just make sure that you scrape real hard with a metal spoon.
By the way, even if you are going to buy canned chipotles, why in the world would you spend twice as much on Don Alphonso's?
If you decide to convert to cooking from jar opening, Bueno Foods also carries Chimayo Peppers.

Carolina's picture

(post #60159, reply #18 of 29)

Ouch! Ouch! Ouch! You're stepping all over my toes again. First, Southerners and grits. Now, Scots and haggis. A line has now been drawn in the sand, big boy. Cross it one more time, and I'll, I'll.....well, I'll think of something between now and then!!

Carolina: A Scot by ancestry, an American by birth, and a Southerner by the Grace of God! (with apologies to the late, great Lewis Grizzard)

Sandra_'s picture

(post #60159, reply #19 of 29)

Carolina -- oatmeal and offal, sewn into the stomach lining of an otherwise perfectly inoffensive sheep? Served to the toe-tappin' rhythms of bagpipes? It's enough to make me want to paint myself blue and romp madly through the heather...
(who inherited her level-headed business acumen from her Irish ancestors, and her innate sense of music and grace from the Scots forebears. A clear-cut case of genetics gone mad.)

Jean_'s picture

(post #60159, reply #20 of 29)

I was ready to leap on my white stallion and go charging bravely to your defense, but then I thought----------Na---------he can take care of himself. ;-)

kai_'s picture

(post #60159, reply #21 of 29)

Oh Ken,

I did not take offense; I guess I was just being a hornblower about grits. Yes, they are tasteless, and have a texture not everyone might like. (I happen to love the texture of liver, e.g.--not everyone does.) Also, [and I can't see the post in this reply mode, but I think it was from Carolina who said that] it is important to have the non-instant variety. Whenever possible, one will always get "taste" from "whole" foods. Of course, you might get a texture that doesn't appeal to you from that, as well.

Been there...I spent my childhood loving and hating different ways of egg preparations; and, to this day, I don't care for peanut butter! (although I love almond butter, makadamia (sp?) butter, almond butter, etc. Same texture, different taste--yet peanut butter has same texture...go figure...and I love peanuts).

I'd like to write an article about teaching children how to love food. (My SIL barely eats anything but junk, even tho' my bro cooks her gourmet stuff...she grew up on junk. Me and bro grew up "having" to "taste" (and a taste could be as little as 1/4 tsp) everything on our plates. He and I will try anything!!!! We are the most adventurous eaters we know :) and wouldn't have it any other way!

Let me know how you like a little texture of grits with your bacon and salsa lol :)


Carolina's picture

(post #60159, reply #22 of 29)


If you're talking about George being able to defend himself, I think you're right. This may prove to be
i very

Jean_'s picture

(post #60159, reply #23 of 29)

Yes, very interesting indeed, she said, galloping to the nearest DMZ.

Carolina's picture

(post #60159, reply #24 of 29)

Jean, you are too funny!! :-o

kai_'s picture

(post #60159, reply #25 of 29)

Hi Ken,
This is for you and Carolina (although she may already be using this recipe or a similar one for her shrimp and grits). I've never tried it, and, in fact, never even heard of tasso before tonite when I stumbled upon this recipe. Also, I've never had white grits--only yellow. It sure sounds good, though! I think I need to eat dinner before reading the cooking posts :)


Recipe courtesy of Taste of Life

Creamy White Grits:

1/2 cup chicken broth,
4 1/2 cups coarse stone-ground white grits,
1 cup heavy cream,
Salt and white pepper to taste

Tasso Gravy:
4 tablespoons butter,
1/2 cup sliced Tasso (recipe follows), cut in 1-inch strips,
1/2 cup flour,
4 cups chicken broth,
2 tablespoons finely chopped parsley,
Salt and white pepper to taste

Shrimp and Sausage:
1/2 pound spicy Italian sausage (3/4 pound of raw),
1 tablespoon olive oil,
2 pounds medium or large peeled and deveined shrimp,
1 1/2 cups chicken broth,
1 recipe Tasso Gravy (recipe follows),
2 tablespoons finely chopped parsley

This very popular dish brings together all of the flavors of the Old South.
The stone-ground grits are a must. It's a great Low Country dish which
can be served year- round and turns up on local tables morning, noon
and night.

For Creamy White Grits:

Bring the chicken broth to a boil in a heavy-bottomed stockpot or large
saucepan. Slowly pour in the grits, stirring constantly. Reduce the heat to
low and continue to stir so that the grits do not settle to the bottom and
scorch. In about 5 minutes, the grits will plump up and become a thick

Continue to cook the grits for about 20-25 minutes, stirring frequently.
The grits should have absorbed all of the chicken stock and become
soft. Stir in heavy cream and cook for another 10 minutes, stirring
frequently. The grits should have a thick consistency and be creamy like
oatmeal. Season to taste with salt and white pepper. Keep warm over
low heat until ready to serve. If the grits become too thick, add warm
chicken broth or water to thin them down.

For Tasso Gravy:

Melt the butter in a heavy-bottomed saucepan over low heat. Add the
Tasso. Saute for 1 minute, browning slightly. Make a roux by adding the
flour and stirring until well combined.

Continue to cook over low heat for 5 minutes, stirring frequently until the
roux develops a nutty aroma. Turn the heat up to medium and gradually
add 2 cups of the chicken broth, stirring vigorously. Keep stirring
constantly until the broth begins to thicken and is smooth. Gradually add
the remaining 2 cups of broth, stirring constantly until the broth thickens
into gravy. Reduce the heat and simmer over low heat for 15 minutes to
cook out the starchy flavor. Add the parsley. Simmer for another 5
minutes. Season to taste with salt and white pepper.

For Shrimp and Sausage:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

To cook Italian sausage: Place the Italian sausage on a baking sheet
with raised sides. Place on the top rack of the 400-degree oven and
bake for 10 to 15 minutes or until the sausage is firm and its juices run
clear. Cool and cut into small bite-size pieces.

Heat the olive oil in a heavy-bottomed frying pan over medium heat. Add
the precooked sausage and saute for 2 minutes to brown slightly.

Add the shrimp and saute until they begin to turn pink - no longer than 1
minute. Add 1 cup of the chicken broth to deglaze the pan. Add the
Tasso Gravy and one tablespoon of the parsley. Bring up to a boil and
let simmer for 1 minute. The last 1/2 cup of chicken stock is to be used
to thin the gravy if needed.

Divide the hot grits between 8 warm bowls. Spoon the shrimp, sausage
mixture over the grits. Sprinkle with the remaining tablespoon of parsley
and serve immediately.

Note: If using large shrimp, allow 6 per person; for medium sized shrimp,
8 to 10 shrimp.

Yield: 8 servings

Recipe by:
Executive Chef Donald Barickman
185 East Bay Street
Charleston, South Carolina, 29401


Tasso, a highly seasoned, intensely flavored smoked pork, adds a
wonderful flavor to a variety of dishes, from soups to jambalaya to
pastas and seafood dishes. Easily obtainable in Louisiana or by mail
order, but fun to make yourself. Here is Chef Alex Patout's recipe:

8-10 pounds boneless pork butt,
5 tablespoons salt,
5 tablespoons cayenne pepper,
3 tablespoons freshly ground black pepper,
3 tablespoons white pepper,
2 tablespoons paprika,
2 tablespoons cinnamon,
2 tablespoons garlic powder or granulated garlic

Trim the pork of all excess fat and cut it into strips about 1 inch thick and
at least 4 inches long. Mix together the seasonings and place in a
shallow pan. Roll each strip of pork in the seasoning mixture and place
on a tray. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate at least overnight
(preferable a couple of days).

Prepare your smoker. Place the pork strips on a grill or rod and smoke
until done, 5-7 hours. Don't let the smoker get too hot. Remove the meat
and let it cool completely, then wrap well in plastic and foil. The tasso will
keep well in the refrigerator for up to 10 days, and it also freezes very

Carolina's picture

(post #60159, reply #26 of 29)


Great minds DO think alike! I had seen that recipe the other day at and had saved it because it sounded so good. The Shrimp and Grits recipe I use comes from the late Bill Neal's SOUTHERN COOKING cookbook. He was the North Carolina chef who made the dish famous.

BTW, the very best stone-ground grits originally came from his restaurant in Chapel Hill, Crook's Corner. They cook up smooth and creamy every time.

They can be ordered from:



Chapel Hill, North Carolina 27514


Ask for CROOK'S GRITS.(The Shrimp and Grits recipe is on the bag, along with some other good grits recipes.) I usually order 6 or 8 bags at a time and store them in the freezer.

Thanks so much for posting the recipe. We'll have the whole world eating grits before you know it!

kai_'s picture

(post #60159, reply #27 of 29)


Whew, thanks for the validation!

Thanks also for the 800#. I will definitely order--unless I get zero satisfaction from my local whole foods market.

Would you care to post your shrimp and grits recipe? (or at least tell us if it uses yellow or white grits)

As usual, I'm posting before I've had "official" dindin--got home really late from work tonite--therefore almost anything sounds good. But I gotta tell ya, next week I am trying shrimp and grits! Thanks!

Oh, and if anyone still pooh-poohs grits, I happen to know of a very well-respected chef that serves them in a country inn in rural southern GA; hear tell that his recipes are admired even by city slicker foodies. Bet he serves them with "lardons" or something, however. (I think "lardons" is fancy for bacon or its close-to-the-hip relatives.) He will likely chime in if I have made so much as a typo about this...stay me burn...

Carolina's picture

(post #60159, reply #28 of 29)


First off: You are exactly right about "lardon".
It is a fancy name for chopped up, cooked bacon. If I told my DH that he had just added "lardons" to his Saturday morning grits, he would look at me, nod, and say, "Yes, dear. Whatever you say." Then he would proceed to stir his bacon into his grits, which is what he does every Saturday morning.

Here is the Shrimp and Grits recipe that I use:

(As I have said before, it comes from the revised edition of Bill Neal's SOUTHERN COOKING. The only difference is, he used cheese in his grits. I think that is "gilding the lily", so I use plain, cooked white grits. Also, I use Texas Pete Hot Sauce because I think that it actually has
where as Tabasco is just HOT!))

4 cups water

1 cup stone ground grits

4 tbsp. butter

1/2 tsp. salt

A few drops of Texas Pete (or Tabasco) Hot Sauce

A pinch each: nutmeg and freshly ground pepper

Bring the water, butter, and salt to a boil in a saucepan. Slowly stir in the grits. Lower heat, cover (you may have to leave the lid ajar for a few minutes) and simmer grits for 30 minutes, stirring frequently. Add the nutmeg, Texas Pete, and freshly ground pepper. Set aside in a warm place or in a double boiler.


1 pound shrimp, peeled and deveined

6 slices bacon, cooked until not quite crisp, then chopped. Reserve drippings.

peanut oil

2 cups fresh sliced mushrooms (You can use less)

1 cup sliced spring onions (scallions) (I use only 1/2 cup.)

1 garlic clove, crushed

4 tsp. fresh lemon juice

Texas Pete or Tabsaco

Chopped fresh parsley

Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Rinse and pat the shrimp dry. Set aside.

Add enough peanut oil to the bacon drippings to make a thin layer in the bottom of a skillet.

Heat over medium-high heat until quite hot. When hot, add the shrimp. Stir, and when the shrimp begins to color, add the mushrooms. Saute about 4 minutes. Add spring onions, bacon, and garlic.Saute another 2 minutes. Season with lemon, parsley, salt and pepper. Stir and remove from heat.

Divide the grits among 4 warm plates. Spoon shrimp over top and serve immediately. Serves 4.

By the way, I would love to know who your chef friend is and where he is located. We are always looking for new and interesting, out of the way places to stay and eat. We go to Atlanta and Savannah quite often.

Thanks, Carolina

kai_'s picture

(post #60159, reply #29 of 29)

Hi Carolina,

Recipe (and DH) sound lovely! I would never had thought to add nutmeg. What I learn here :) I agree that tobasco is basically hot without much flavor, especially compared to so many other varieties that have flooded the market for us chiliheads. Used to love Trappey's brand--it was vinegar and chiles; can't seem to find it locally anymore.(That is the first type I learned to love--when I was about 8; Dad used to use it liberally in his black-eyed peas; Mom freaked out when I started using as much as he did--which was a lot! She's Swedish/American, not Southern American, and still doesn't care for anything hot. Sometimes there's no accounting for taste! Thank goodness for Dad's genes!)

The chef in question may or may not consider me a "friend" these days, depending upon his flighty moods--I think he bristles at my feminism; but we do exchange jokes and such. He used to be a fixture at, and perhaps here and Here's how to reach him:
(hope that translates to a hotlink--if not, cut/paste). His inn (Langston House, I think) is about 2 hrs south of Atlanta, and 75? miles west of Macon. His menu is divine, to eat and die for. He's a chefaholic, so try to visit when he is day I hope to...