Sunday, October 09, 2011


The habaneros are ripening!! ... and they are HOT and DELICIOUS! Finally these fabulous little chiles have started turning a vibrant, gorgeous orange, and today I finally picked the first one. In seconds I had taken a couple of slices and raced up the stairs to taste it with Dan. Seriously HOT HOT HOT, but they also have this unbelievably luscious fruity flavour and fragrance that makes you want more, despite the threat of heat damage.
So what does one do when in the presence of such a beauty? Well, whip up a salsa of course! Today will be forever known as "the day of the danger salsa". 
Here's what I did next:
  • diced up the rest of the habanero (and thought about taking another off the plant, but resisted because I don't think it's fully ripe yet)
  • diced some mixed chiles from the grocery store. I think these are medium heat, but have no idea what variety they are. Some were bright red, and some a really pale green which I hadn't seen before. Both are pretty big in size.
  • chopped up a dried red chile from the plant we had last year
  • diced about 4 green chiles from our other chile plant. They went kind of nuts, but I neglected them a lot because they appeared to have very little heat or chile flavour, despite leaving to ripen for ages. They do have a nice fresh green veggie taste, though, and I thought they might balance out the heat a bit.

  • roasted 2 big cloves of garlic in the microwave and cut up.
  • blasted a few cherry tomatoes in the microwave, removed the skin, and chopped up. (this was me thinking it would be enough sweet added...)
  • diced some red onion
  • added a tiny bit of olive oil
  • added a bit of adobo sauce (from the lovely canned chipotle chiles that I never stop going on about.)
  • sea salt
  • put these all in a mortar and pestle and smashed the hell out of them.
I think this is when I licked my finger and nearly took my face off. My lips turned red and ballooned up on one side and it took nearly an hour for my face to calm down. Sooo...
  • chopped up a bunch more cherry tomatoes finely (without heating) and added them to the mix.
  • chopped up a big bunch of cilantro
  • some more sea salt
  • some smoked paprika
  • a splash of Frank's Hot Sauce (a Syracuse, NY staple that I excitedly found at a local grocery store -- at about 10X the price!)
... and then into the fridge to get tastier and tastier.
I've just had a spoonful and it's fab. Spicy, but not deathly so, and the flavours do all come through. I would say 'perfect', but that would be bragging.