I first learned about chipotles from this list so I figured that with
all the discussion lately, I'd pass along what I've learned.
They're smoked jalapeno peppers and you can buy them whole & dried
ones as well as in powdered form. (Powder makes things really easy). I
keep my dried peppers, pepper-type powders, and paprika in the
Penzey's does sell the chipotles as well as a dry adobo seasoning
powder that they describe as "Not hot, but rich in flavor" The
ingredients in their mix are: garlic, onion, Tellicherry black pepper,
Mexican oregano, cumin, and cayenne pepper.
DISCLAIMER: I am a satisfied customer of Penzey's (www.penzeys.com)
and have no other relationship to the company. (They have some great
chili powders also that I used with the chipotle powder to make black
I'm not sure if you can approximate the flavor of the canned chipotles
by mixing chipotle powder and adobo powder because the canned stuff
also has tomato paste and vinegar.
With the cans of chipotle in adobo sauce, I puree an entire can and
store it in a jar in the refrigerator. You rarely need more than a
teaspoon of the puree at a time. I use it mostly in Mexican foods
although I've even seen recipes calling for using a very small amount
of it as a bread spread when making a sandwich. (Sorry I don't know
how long it will last and I've never tried freezing it although it
would probably be fine to try freezing it in ice cube trays.)