Pied Beauty

Gerard Manley Hopkins (1844-1889)

Glory be to God for dappled things—
For skies of couple-colour as a brinded cow;
For rose-moles all in stipple upon trout that swim;
Fresh-firecoal chestnut-falls; finches' wings;
Landscape plotted and pieced—fold, fallow, and plough;
And all trades, their gear and tackle and trim.

All things counter, original, spare, strange;
Whatever is fickle, freckled (who knows how?)
With swift, slow; sweet, sour; adazzle, dim;
He fathers-forth whose beauty is past change:

Praise him.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Jalapeno Update: Chipotle!

The jalapeno harvest continues, unabated.  The little 6-pack I planted this spring now qualifies me as an pepper farmer, so we've been busy inventing ways to preserve the bounty.  The latest experiment: Home-smoked chipotle peppers!

Chipotle peppers are typically smoke-dried jalapenos.  Ours are smaller than the canned ones at the grocery store, but they'll do.  We smoked about a pound of them outside on the grill, with mesquite chips.  Soak the chips first and then maintain a temperature of about 275° for maybe 3 hours.  Traditionally, only the red-ripe ones are smoked but we used both. 

Minor fracas ensued when Abby thought we were throwing wood chucks, instead of wood chips, on the fire, but we got that all straightened out!

I followed a very involved recipe using dried chili paste but after some experimentation, I realized that I could have used any sort of sauce.  Try barbeque sauce, sriracha sauce, or any sort of tomato-based prepared sauce.  From scratch, use tomato paste, dried red chile paste, fresh garlic, brown sugar, cider vinegar, salt and water.  Adjust seasonings as you prefer.  I don't like the sauce itself to be too spicy because our peppers have been so hot!  Cook for about 20 minutes, until the peppers soften and the sauce thickens.

You can keep this in the refrigerator for up to a month, but I processed mine in a boiling water bath for 15 minutes.  I plan to store it in the pantry with the other 20 jars of jalapenos!

1 comment:

  1. Those hot peppers will taste great when the weather starts to turn cold!