Tuesday 14 September 2010

Voodoo Chillies

We've been growing chilli plants in the house. They've been thriving at the big south-east facing window, gobbling up the late-summer sun.

My wife insists that the seeds all came out of the same packet but the variety of different "peppers" they have produced is amazing. There are four plants in total: Two seem intent on spawning long green peppers in the shape of the red Romano type you can now readily get in the supermarket; one had produced a decent sized red Romano type along with several green ones; and one has produced lots of JalapeƱo type green chillies and a couple of ferociously hot orange ones.

I pickled a batch of the green JalapeƱos. I first chopped them and soaked them in brine (just water and cooking salt) overnight. I then put the slices in a sterilised jar and poured over a half-and-half boiled water and white vinegar (with a little sugar) pickling solution. After a week or so they looked just like the expensive supermarket variety, but tasted a lot better.

I put one of the orange chillies in a beef stir-fry. I should have used rubber gloves while chopping it because the little capsaicin-laden demon wanted to get everywhere. It mellowed out considerably in the stir-fry, at least I think it did but my mouth was so numb by that point that I'm not really sure.

The "Voodoo Chillies" title is fairly obvious but it reminds me of my wife reading the inlay of a Jimi Hendrix CD for the first time, shortly after we met. She pronounced the song title "Voodoo Chile" as "Voodoo Chilli". My friends and I laughed until we stopped. I guess she was just so well brung up.

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