Serrano Chile Powder (Smoked)

$7.99

The spicier, less robust cousin of the chipotle (smoked jalapeño). If kick is your schtick, this will heat, and smoke up your dish, quick!

1 oz./28

Sold By: Spice Jungle

Product Description

PURPOSE

WHAT IS IT?

Smoked Serrano is is a hotter cousin to ground chipotle, a smoked jalapeño. It’s also Mexico’s answer to Spain’s hot smoked paprika. In their pepper pantheon, Serranos are the next step up, at 5,000 to 23,000 SHU, in heat, from the jalapeño, making them a mild-to-medium heat pepper.

EXPERIENCE

The flavors of the Serrano, when dried, undergo a radical transformation. They smell more like caramelized tomatoes, embraced by a bit more direct smoke than Spanish pap.

Dry, or wet, the growing seasons’ weather affects the heat levels of this pepper.  Drier crops tend to be higher in SHU heat/pungency.

CULINARY GEOGRAPHY

The majority of production of these peppers comes from the Mexican states of :

  • Sinaloa;
  • Veracruz;
  • Nayarit;
  • Tamaulipas.

TRADITIONAL USES

  • Chuletas – Mexican pork chops
  • Guacamole
  • Salsa picante
  • Picadillo

A FEW IMPROVISATIONAL RIFFS:

  • Barbacoa y queso donuts – The American stuffed donut goes South of the Border with this spicy Serrano beef stuffing.
  • Spicy Caesar – The Mexican (Yes, Mexican) salad classic with a pinch of smoked Serrano goes into outer orbit!
  • Pad Puebla – My Thai-Mexican crossover is a stir-fried fusion Asian-Mexi “pad thai” noodle with with chicken, calabacitas, scallions, and a a creamy tomato that’s still Thai sweet, but with more Latin spice mix, fronted by Serrano smoked chili powder for medium heat lovers.
  • Cassoulet Fernando – The classic French bean and meat dish made with Mexican chorizo, stewed chicken, and a blend of herbs and spices from both traditions.

POWDER or POD?

If you’re reading through all of the powders, my apologies for my broken record moment: The whole dried pods, and a good coffee, or spice grinder, works better, IMHO. The pod keeps the essential oils of the chiles trapped inside. Powder loses potency over time, pretty quickly, depending upon how you store it. If you make big recipes, or spice blends, then this is a go-to. If not, consider the whole pepper.

THE BACKSTORY

The Serrano pepper originated in the Sierras, a mountainous region of Mexico, near northern Puebla and Hidalgo, Mexico. The name of the pepper pays homage to the mountain range.

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