Ode to Jalapeño

Monday, September 15 2003 @ 02:31 AM PDT

Contributed by: matt

A dinner for four in seven courses (lots of leftovers).

Jalapeño Corn Bread (from "The Jalapeño Cafe")

Preheat oven to 425 degrees and place heavy skillet or rectangular baking in oven to heat.

Mix dry ingredients.

Beat egg. Add it to oil and milk. Add everything to flour mixture.

Stir with a fork until just moist. (Don't over mix.)

Remove hot baking pan from oven and rub with butter or oil to grease.

Pour in batter and bake for 30 minutes until browned on top.

Cream of Jalapeño Soup (from "The Jalapeño Cafe")

Mince the jalapeños and set aside. In a large heavy saucepan,, heat the butter over medium heat. Add the jalapeños, onions and garlic and sauté, stirring, until vegetables are soft.

Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the avocado, tomatoes and cream. Lower the temperature and return the pan to the heat, watching and stirring so the cream does not separate. Bring the soup slowly back to a simmer and cook for about 30 minutes to reduce by one third and to blend the flavors. Be sure to stir the soup, occasionally to prevent sticking or scorching.

Season with salt and pepper. Just before serving, stir the chopped cilantro leaves into the soup, reserving, some for garnish. Ladle soup into bowls and garnish with the remaining cilantro.

Bacon Cheddar Jalapeño Poppers (from "The Jalapeño Cafe")

Preheat the broiler.

Cut cheese into 12 slices long enough to fit inside the jalapeño halves. Insert the cheese into the halves. Wrap the jalapeño halves with the bacon slices, securing with a toothpick. Place on a medium baking sheet.

Broil 5 to 10 minutes, or until the back is evenly brown.

Jalapeño Beef Stir Fry (mine)

Mix the cayenne pepper into the marinade, and use in lieu of teriyaki for the stir fry.

Don't add the sauce right away, but don't wait until the very end either. Ideally, the sauce should be beginning to caramelize on the jalapeños about the same time the beef is done cooking, but don't sweat it. Close counts.

Chicken Taco Salad (mine)

Beat the egg well, and lightly coat both sides of the chicken breasts, then liberally sprinkle the garlic salt and chili powder onto them.

Broil the chicken, preferably on a gas grill (a charcoal grill runs the danger of having its distinctive flavor overpower the seasoning)

Cool and cut into thin strips.

In a large bowl, toss lettuce, olives, chicken, tomatoes, scallions, jalapeños, and cheese.

You can either mix in the salsa and guacamole as well, or serve them on the side as dressings.

Jalapeño Ice Cream (from "The Jalapeño Cafe")

Parboil the jalapenos in boiling water for 3 minutes. Don't overcook, or jalapeños will lose their bright green color. Place in ice water to cool.

Process the jalapeños, lime peel and lime juice in blender or food processor until finely chopped.

Quickly work the jalapeño mixture into the ice cream, then put the ice cream back in its container and refreeze.

This tastes better if it's made a day ahead.

Jalapeño Coffee (mine, God help me)

Spiral cut the large jalapeño, deseeding as you go. Cut the resulting helix shape into four pieces. Each one should be long enough to wrap around itself one and a half to two times.

Finely chop the small jalapeños, being careful to save all parts (including the juices and seeds) in a bowl.

Grind the coffee beans well, and thoroughly mix grinds into the bowl of small jalapeños.

Fill the filter with the coffee/ jalapeño mixture

Bring the water to a boil, and slowly pour into the pot or carafe through the filter.

After pouring into mugs, rub one of the spiral pieces of the large jalapeño around the entire rim, leaving it perched there as a garnish.