ancho chilie powder vs. plain chilie powder

Joined May 6, 2004
Help. I am tring a new recipe for mother's day. I am hoping that I didn't screw up my $80.00 piece of New York Strip. I followed a recipe that I found on steak rubs. One of the ingedients was ancho chilie powder. I just assumed it was the same chilie powder that my husband uses in his chilie. I used a cup of it in my rub instead of ancho chilie powder. Should I worry that my steak is going to taste awful or should it be ok this time! Just tring to make sure that I don't ruine Mother's Day. Thanks in advance!
Joined Dec 23, 2003
Ancho chili powder is just dried ancho chilis. The term "chili powder" can sometime be used to describe just dried chilis, but most of the time, chili powder is a combination of dried chilis, garlic, cumin, oregano and salt. Ancho is usually one of the dried chilis in the mix, along with others. It depends on the other ingredients in the rub, but the extra garlic, cumin, oregano and salt may not be all that bad. A cup is a lot though. Too much cumin can be bitter.
Joined Aug 14, 2000
Actually, ancho chilies (and ancho chili powder) are dried (and ground) poblano chilis. They are on the milder side of the heat spectrum. Depending on whats in the chili powder blend it can be quite hot. Chili powder can also refer to ground red chilies and often this means cayene, also pretty hot.
Joined May 26, 2001
Wow, that must be some big steak, to need a CUP of chili powder! :eek: As Kyle and Scott have said, "chili powder" can mean a lot of different things and include many different spices. When a recipe calls for a specific chili powder, such as ancho chile powder in yours, it means the dried, powdered version of only that one variety of chile. There are hundreds of different chiles, and each has its own particular flavor; even the same veriety of chile can have different flavors depending on whether it is fresh or dried, and how it is dried. For example: most people know what jalapenos are like. But did you know that when you dry and smoke them they come out as chipotles? Very different flavor, one from the other. But I digress. ;)

What does the chili powder you used taste like? And what else is in the rub? If it is spicier than you really want, just scrape off most of the rub before you cook the steak. In fact, I don't think it's ever a good idea to leave a thick layer of spices on a steak -- you'll end up burning the spices before you get that nice meaty crust. And that's what you want to end up with: a beautiful hunk of MEAT, :lips: not a lot of burnt spices. :eek:
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