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Achiote Paste


Achiote fruit
Lew Robertson/Photodisc/Getty Images
A recipe for Achiote paste that is an ingredient in other Mexican dishes and marinades.


  • 1/4 cup annato seeds
  • 1 tablespoon coriander seeds
  • 1 tablespoon oregano
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 teaspoon black peppercorns
  • 2 whole cloves
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 5 cloves of garlic, peeled
  • 1/2 cup bitter orange juice (Seville) or 1/3 cup white vinegar


Grind the spices (annato, coriander, cumin, peppercorns, oregano and cloves) in a spice mill or with a mortar and pestle. (You can also use a coffee-grinder, but it will leave the seasoning flavor behind, so make sure you do not plan to use the coffee grinder for coffee again.) Blend the ground spices with the salt, garlic and the bitter orange juice in a blender, until it is smooth. Rub the mixture onto chicken, pork or fish and let it marinate for 4-6 hours then cook as usual. Or use the achiote as an ingredient in another dish.
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