Adobo paste recipe

Various types of chilli powder and chilli peppers
Chipotle and ancho chillies lend their heat to this Mexican sauce - Shulevsky, Vladimir

A Mexican chilli sauce to use in braises and marinades. Whole chipotle and ancho chillies can be bought from Cool Chile Co. I use this paste on pork chops with avocado salsa.


about 250ml


  • 5 chipotle chillies, ideally morita

  • 4 ancho chillies

  • 1 tsp cumin seeds

  • 1 tsp coriander seeds

  • ½ tsp allspice

  • 3cm cinnamon stick

  • 1 tsp dried oregano

  • 5 garlic cloves, roughly chopped

  • 2 shallots, roughly chopped

  • 1½ tsp salt

  • 2 tsp soft dark-brown sugar (optional)

  • 2 tbsp red-wine vinegar

  • 5 tbsp sherry vinegar


  1. Toast the chillies in a dry frying-pan to make them slightly pliable.

  2. Remove the stems then remove the seeds from all the chipotles and half of the anchos.

  3. Put both types of chilli in a small pan and cover with water. Bring to the boil then set aside to soak for half an hour. Strain, reserving the liquid.

  4. Toast the whole spices in a dry frying-pan until fragrant – about 40 seconds.

  5. Now put everything into a food processor and whizz to a purée, adding enough soaking liquid to turn it into a paste.

  6. Taste and adjust the salt and sugar if necessary.

  7. Keep in a sterilised jar in the fridge for up to four months.