More Recipes and Posts from the Chili Pepper Madness Site
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Here are the posts since the last newsletter.
Jerk Rubbed Grilled Corn on the Cob
Getting a few last blasts on our grill this time of year. The cooler weather is coming and the temperatures are fluctuating quite a bit. We still have some warm days coming, and we have no problem enjoying the fall. It's a great time of year, really, so comfortable, great sleeping weather, and the pepper garden is STILL exploding like crazy. But since we're grilling, I'm taking advantage of a recent concoction - Homemade Jamaican Jerk Seasoning. I made a fairly large batch for making Jamaican Jerk Grilled Chicken Wings but I wanted to point out that jerk seasoning does not need to be relegated to only chicken. It's a truly versatile seasoning with a number of flavorful components. You can give many a dish a blast of this Caribbean awesomeness. Think shrimp. Think vegetables. Think corn on the cob!
Grilled Jerk Chicken Wings with Homemade Jamaican Jerk Sauce
I couldn't help myself. I've been absolutely jonesing for some chicken wings and I had to make some. No reason to run out to the local wing joint when you can make them at home, especially when you have this freshly made jamaican jerk seasoning rub just sitting there, taunting you, begging you to use it. Come on! How am I able to resist? Alas, I am not able. But I will not chastise myself. I will, instead, enjoy the heck out of these wings.
Homemade Jamaican Jerk Seasoning
Don't you love a good jerk seasoning? Jerk cooking originated in Jamaica and you'll get all those wonderful Caribbean flavors when you cook with these spices. It is traditionally used with chicken, but it works great over shrimp and other seafood. I'm not very picky in how I use it. When I want spice, I want some spice! With these flavors, it can work with any protein of your preference. Tofu, anyone? Why not? It also works on vegetables, like grilled corn on the cob. That recipe is coming soon!
Pique - Puerto Rican Hot Sauce
Pique is an interesting hot sauce. You'll find it in Puerto Rico - it's a national staple there, with a different version practically for every household. It is one of those hot sauce recipes that defies any specific recipe because it can vary quite a bit. Many of the ingredients come down to personal preference of the household serving it up. It is not a blended hot sauce. At its most basic, it is a number of ingredients floating in vinegar. Those ingredients, in particular, chili peppers, infuse the vinegar with heat and flavor, which you can use to dash over anything you desire.
7-Pot Barrackapore Chili Pepper
Chinense. Over 1 Million Scoville Heat Units. This is one of my favorite chili peppers. I love all 7-Pot peppers for their heat and fruitiness. In fact, it is one of the hottest chili peppers in the world. The 7-Pot Barrackapore comes from Trinidad and is a rare chili pepper. The pots are shaped similar to a habanero or a ghost pepper. The skin is typically pimpled and form a tail, per the photos. The pods start out green and ripen to a vibrant shade of red.
Roasted Corn, Poblano and Chicken Chowder with Tomato-Avocado Topping
I love a good chicken corn chowder. Corn is still abundant for the summer, inexpensive and delicious when grilled or roasted. Just as the temperatures are beginning to dip a little and a chill is settling into the air at night, a chowder is just what you need to keep the summer warmth alive. It doesn't take much, really, to make a good chicken corn chowder, but I make mine a bit different, bringing in one of my favorite ingredients - roasted poblano peppers. Yes! Roasted poblanos are welcomed in any soup or stew I make.
Chicken Enchilada Casserole Verde
Chicken enchilada casserole is an outstanding one-pot meal that cooks up quickly and satisfies a group. I will often make a huge batch of Tomatillo Salsa (Salsa Verde) so that I can keep some in the fridge and use for recipes like this. It makes dinnertime options VERY easy and quick. Sort of no-fuss. Isn't that nice? This is the verde, or green, version of the recipe. I made a Red version - One-Pot Meatless Enchilada Stew - without the chicken, though you can easily add chicken to both dishes, or exclude it for a vegetarian dish. I like it better with chicken, thank you very much, though pork would be a nice option.
Cajun Baked Chicken Thighs
Have you ever cooked with chicken thighs? No? It's time to start! Chicken thighs are delicious and a dark meat alternative to the more traditional chicken breast meal you might be used to. Because they are dark meat, they have a higher fat content, so you're upping your calorie intake a bit. However! Because of that fat content, they are much more forgiving in the pan and in the oven if you accidentally leave them in a bit too long. Chicken breast can become dry if you don't watch them carefully. Not so with chicken thighs, especially baked chicken thighs. Chicken thighs love you, and you will love them back.
Shrimp and Cheese Stuffed Heirloom Tomatoes
I've had the idea to make seafood stuffed tomatoes ever since we had some for brunch while staying in Anna Maria Island. Talk about a GREAT brunch. We sat at our table along the beach overlooking the Gulf of Mexico. Lazy gulls plopped in and out of the water while shorebirds hovered over the dining area, relentless in their hopes to snatch someone's food. If it weren't for the fishing line strung over the canopy, they might have succeeded. Patty and I ordered the stuffed heirloom tomatoes that morning. We took one long look at each other after the first bite, both knowing we had to make this for ourselves.
National Guacamole Day
September 16th is National Guacamole Day, my friends! At Chili Pepper Madness, guacamole is one of our favorite foods by far. So creamy, so delicious, so satisfying. And so many great ways to make it! You can visit a hundred different Mexican restaurants and get a hundred different recipes. Isn't that great? How many can you visit in one day? You better get started! Or, just make your own.
Aji Picante Sauce
I love, love, love picante sauce. It is such a super fresh way to incorporate a good amount of your garden harvest in one jar and it is something you can use on many a dish. AND! It is crazy delicious. I treat picante sauce like a sauce/salsa combo, a sort of hybrid between the worlds of hot sauces and salsa. Is it one or the other? The reality is that it is both, depending on how you look at it. Both salsa and picante sauce use the same typical ingredients. With salsa, you're mostly rough chopping the ingredients. With a picante sauce, you have more of a puree, so it comes down to texture. However, you'll notice in some Mexican restaurants or even store bought salsas that they have little texture, so they could, in reality, be classified as a picante sauce.
1 Million Plus: Cooking with the World's Hottest Chili Peppers
NEW COOKBOOK by Mike Hultquist! Superhots are sweeping the world. Chili peppers are getting hotter all the time, reaching well into the millions on the famous Scoville Heat Unit scale. With Bhut Jolokias, 7-Pots, Scorpions, Carolina Reapers and more, the list keeps growing. If you’ve ever been curious about cooking with them, this book is for you. We have information on dehydrating, making powders, infusing alcohols and vinegars, making chili oils and more, including 100 recipes using these pods of pure heat.
Aji Fantasy Chili Pepper
Capsicum Bacattum. The Aji Fantasy is an aji variety that was developed over a 5 year period in Finland. It is a sweet pepper, emphasis on sweet, with a mild heat level. The peppers are highly flavorful and ideal for many dishes. The plants are quite productive. Mine exploded this year in the garden and I've picked several dozen already. The pods are smallish, about the size of a habanero pepper, and ripen to an attractive bright yellow. They are shaped like squat little hats. An excellent pepper for cooking. A new favorite in the Chili Pepper Madness household.
Hatch Chile Salsa
We were planning a big hiking trip with the family and I wanted to bring a fresh salsa made from our garden, but I was walking through our local grocery store and came upon something I have never seen before in this particular store - Hatch Chile Peppers. Such good fortune! Living in the Chicago area, fresh Hatch Chiles are just not something we come by often. If at all. It took everything I had not to snatch them all up to keep for myself. Hatch chiles are grown in New Mexico's hatch Valley. It's an earthy pepper with a mild heat, though after I roasted them and cooked them into this gorgeous salsa, the back heat really developed. Not too crazy, though.
How to Make Spicy Tomato Juice from Scratch
When the garden is going INSANE and you have so many tomatoes and peppers, what are you supposed to do with them? Of course you can make as many meals as possible, but you have to preserve them at some point - see Preserving Peppers. However! They don't have to only go into meals. Think outside the box, or perhaps inside the glass. We're talking Tomato-Pepper juice! You can preserve your juice by freezing or canning it, but it tastes so good, it probably won't stick around for long. This is a simple recipe, actually. Just roast and process. It will serve as a base for drink recipes like bloody mary's or micheladas, or you can just pour a glass for your morning start.
Homemade Spicy Lime Michelada
Hi. It’s Patty coming at you with a Thirsty Thirteenth. I’ve been waiting for a good harvest from our garden so I could make a garden fresh tomato juice. However, I don’t want to just drink straight tomato juice when we can make a bloody mary, Bloody-Rita or even better, a Michelada. The Michelada is quickly becoming one of my favorite drinks.
Easy No Cook Tomato-Pepper Pasta Sauce
A huge shout-out to "Bon Appetit" magazine for inspiring this recipe. I love that magazine. As I was perusing the pages, I came across a collection of no-cook pasta sauces that sounded quite delicious. As I sat there, my mind wandered to the garden. So many ideas bloomed and this no-cook chili-tomato sauce was born. In reality, it is sort of a riff off the classic pesto, which I make often, but with many more ingredients. In particular, the gorgeous Cherokee Purple heirloom tomato I just picked from the garden, and a fresh batch of Tangerine Dream chili peppers I also just harvested.
Tangerine Dream Chili Pepper
The Tangerine Dream chili pepper is a gorgeous rocket-shaped sweet pepper that matures to a vibrant orange when ripe and ready to pick. The heat level is very low with a focus on the sweetness. The plants are quite productive with the peppers growing upwards. The fruits grow to approximately 3 inches in length and the plants grow to about 18 inches. Harvest them 70 days after you've planted them. Full sun is best for growing. They are very tasty! Try them pickled or in salads, of course, but I've also tried them roasted and incorporated raw into a no-cook pasta sauce recipe. The sweetness truly comes through.
Pesto Pasta with Soft Boiled Egg
This recipe is quickly becoming one of our favorites, a sort of go-to for a quick meal. There is flat out something magical about pesto, the uber Italian sauce that goes so perfectly with pasta. I often make batches of pesto and keep some in the fridge or freezer, and I actively look for ways to incorporate it into meals OTHER than pasta. It's great swirled into soups and as a spread, but a personal favorite is pairing pesto with egg. Who'd-a-thunk? You may be as surprised as we were by the awesomeness of this combination.
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