Monday, July 11, 2011

Recipes Part 16: Peppers!

If you’re like me, you always thought hot peppers only grew in the southwest or in other countries. I was proved oh so wrong this season by the plethora of peppers at Atherton MarketFork In It (Bell's Best Berries), the Lomax Incubator Farm and Houston Farm have all had them the last couple weeks and they are beautiful. But what do you do with these seasonal gems? Here are two recipes that were suggested to me and were instant hits with guests at a party I threw on Saturday. I bought a combination of poblano peppers from Fork In It and jalapenos from Houston Farms.

Russell's Salsa (V)
Add this to your list of items you will never buy in a jar from the grocery store again because you can make and freeze it easily. The ingredients are easy to find – almost all of it I got at the market this weekend. The tomatoes I got from Houston Farms, onions from the Lomax Incubator Farm, and the corn and cilantro are from Fork In It.

4 medium tomatoes
1 jalapeno pepper
3 small onions
1 ear cooked corn
1 bunch cilantro
1 teaspoon hot sauce (ie Tabasco)
Salt and pepper to taste
  1. Using a food processor, blend: 3 tomatoes, pepper, 2 onions and cilantro.
  2. Chop coarsely: remaining tomato, onion and corn.
  3. Combine all and add hot sauce, salt and pepper to taste.
  4. Chill until ready to eat.

Stuffed Peppers (v)
When I first saw peppers crop up at Houston Farms a week or two ago, the farmer suggested that I cut them in half, fill them with cream cheese then bake them. That sounds pretty good but I wanted to make them even more local and hopefully a little healthier. I got Greek-style yogurt from New Terra Farms; goat cheese, pepper jack and extra sharp cheddar from Simply Local; and tomatoes from Houston Farms. I used the different peppers because that’s what was available this week but the great thing is that they range in hotness. I served this as an appetizer and the guests could chose if they wanted a hot or medium pepper. I also used a combination of pepper jack and cheddar cheese because, again, that’s what was available but the variation also meant a range of spice in the dish.

9 peppers of your choice

1 tomato, diced

1 cup Greek-style yogurt
3 tablespoons goat cheese
1 cup shredded cheese of your choice
Cut peppers length-wise and remove seeds and stems. Lay them in a baking dish hollow side up.

     1.  Combine goat cheese and yogurt in a bowl.
     2.  Fill each pepper with 1-2 teaspoons of cheese-yogurt mixture.
     3.  Surround with diced tomatoes.
     4.  Cover with shredded cheese.
     5.  Bake for 20 minutes at 350 or until peppers are easily pierced with a fork

Side story: I can’t cut hot peppers because the juices, and especially the seeds, really irritate my skin. I can eat them just fine but they make my hands feel like they are on fire. I suggest either getting some latex gloves or having someone else cut them if you’re oversensitive!

1 comment:

  1. Very nice. Alternatively, serrano and poblano peppers are delicious and leave a nice earthy smell in the kitchen!