Habañero Peppers

If you’re not familiar with the Habañero try to get your hands on some. OK, well make sure you wear gloves because these little guys pack quite a punch! What is truly wonderful about these peppers though is that they have a VERY fruity aroma, almost like candy. Don’t let that sweet smell fool you though they are toward the top of the scale for spiciness, a little goes a long way. If you like spicy food though then you might want to try this little guy out.

When I was first introduced to the habañero it was this bright orange pepper and fairly small. However this year I saw gorgeous heaps of them at the farmers market in all colors from red, orange, yellow, to green! I couldn’t resist. I bought heaps of them. (I should say that I an not the best when it comes to spicy food but I know my husband loves it.)

I had three different ideas on how I wanted to use them. First off in Sean Brock’s cookbook Heritage he has a recipe for making your own hot sauce! The recipe is a 4 month fermentation that uses 5 pounds of peppers!

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The next recipe was Heston Blumenthal’s recipe for Jalapeño Cornbread Muffins. I recently made these and it called for preserved peppers. I didn’t have any so I sautéed the jalapeños and added them to the recipe. I like the flavor but then it dawned on me that the sweetness of the habañero might compliment the sweetness of the corn better… (I still have to try this theory out.) So I made a jar of roasted habañeros preserved in olive oil.

Lastly, a few years back my husband made habañero jelly that he loved and I wanted to try it with these peppers due to their complex flavor.

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I am not sure how much of these ideas and recipes will be a success but focusing on seasonal ingredients means when you see something that’s just stunning at the farmers market you have to at least experiment. I will be sure to do more blogging about this as we try these recipes.

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