Sambal is becoming more common, a spicy Malaysian chile paste that is widely used for a lot of Asian cuisine. You can find it in the Asian food aisle of any well-stocked grocery store. A generally straightforward mix of chiles, salt and vinegar (some have garlic and/or sugar), sambal can best be described as an Asian harrissa. It’s different from Sriracha in that it is nice and chunky with lots of seeds and bits of chile. It makes for a great shortcut to Arrabbiata and here’s the simple way to do it.
The preservation method is simple: First the olives are blanched in hot water. Then moisture and bitter components are drained from the fruit with sea salt, and finally the fruit is dried – in the early days by use of charcoal fires, now in special drying ovens, called “essiccatori” (dehydrators).
Before you hush puppy purists grab the torches and pitchforks and head to Los Angeles for a few days of burning yours truly at the stake, hear me out. I was desperate for an appetizer at this Saturday’s grilling and had no money but plenty of corn masa, garlic, habanero pepper, and vegetable oil. That’s where this tasty violation of southern tradition originated.
Now you’re looking for some ideas for side dishes that will withstand the hot weather and not make your guests ill. Here’s what I like to serve: Thai-style cucumber salad, horseradish pickled beets and pickled red onions. Add some chipotle butter for the corn and you’ll have a great meal with complementary flavors and tastes.
If you’re having people over and want to serve Southwest-inspried finger food, look no further than flautas. Here are recipes for beef and chicken flautas.
I found the Spanish chiles known as pimientos de padrón at the Downtown Growers Market here in Albuquerque and fried them in olive oil, then dressed them with sea salt. Just excellent!
I suppose given enough time, anyone could come up with a gazillion stuffings to mash inside a jalapeño pod, but why reinvent the popper when this cookbook has already done it for you?