You're going to need to get hold of some ancho peppers if you want to make authentic homemade ancho chili powder. If you don't grow and dry your own, then buying them dried online is fairly easy nowadays. This is a mild blend of whole peppers and pre-ground spices with plum-like flavours. (See the bottom of the page for links to more of my recipes)
Ingredients: (makes about 6-7 tablespoons)
2-3 dried anchos (use more if they're small)
1 tbsp smoked paprika powder (or regular paprika)
1 tbsp allspice berries
2 tsp black peppercorns
2 tsp cumin seeds
2 tsp fenugreek seeds
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp turmeric powder
1-2 tsp salt (see note 2 below)
tbsp = tablespoon
tsp = teaspoon
Store your ancho chili powder in a cool place in an airtight jar and out of direct sunlight. Use within 3 months.
Note: You can dry toast the ancho pieces, peppercorns, allspice berries and cumin and fenugreek seeds before grinding. The heat from the toasting releases fabulous flavours and aromas. Click here for tips and photos on this. (Link opens in new window)
Note 2: I recommend using a quality rock/sea/kosher salt etc if you have them, as they're a bit less processed than regular salt. However you can use regular table salt if that's all you have available.
Ingredient Note: I recommend using as many whole ingredients as you can when making this mix. But if you don't have them whole, just use pre-ground powders and halve the amounts the recipe requires. For example, for 2 teaspoons of whole peppercorns you use 1 teaspoon of pre-ground pepper. Reduce any others you don't have whole by half as well and stir in with any other powders when making.
These peppers originate from Puebla which is in Mexico, and when fresh they're called poblanos. Dry them and they become what we call anchos.
If you've never seen them in their dried state they don't look like a typical pepper...
...The ones you can buy dried here in the UK are a deep purple colour, almost black, and are about
3-4 inches long by 2-3 inches wide with a mild flavour.
Interesting Side Note: The residents of Puebla, Mexico are also known as poblanos! I assume the peppers were named after them and not the other way round.
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