Chilepepper and spice

Hot food can be really cool.

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Saturday Mex

As always we wanted something tasty last Saturday. And we didn't really want to buy a lot of stuff. From time to time we try to use what we've got instead of buying a lot and then have to throw stuff away. Still, we had to buy some stuff, but nothing expensive. The really yummy dinner contained as a starter our favourite, Salsa Fresca, inspired of the recipe from Eat the Heat by Jonas Borssén, our favourite chef. Then we had some kind of mex gratin with fried tortilla slices, cheeses and sausage. I'll now introduce you to my own chef, Matli, who will contribute to these posts from time to time with the actual recipes of what we eat :-)

OK, here we go. The Salsa Fresca is a quite basic tomato based salsa. You will need the following ingredients for a small bowl of salsa:

4 small ripe tomatoes (or two plum tomatoes), diced
2-3 spring onions, finely sliced
1 large garlic clove, roasted and mashed
1 jalapeno, finely chopped (don't remove the seeds)
1 tbsp of olive oil
Juice from half a lime
A bunch of cilantro
Some salt

Mix all the ingredients in a bowl, and put in the refrigerator for at least 10 minutes. We usually eat this as a starter together with tortilla chips. But it also works well to accompany various mex or tex-mex dishes.

For the tortilla pie, you will need the following for two large servings:
1 tbsp vegetable oil
300 g ground pork
1-2 sliced spicy sausages, e.g. chorizo
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 tsp dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
A pinch of ground cloves
A pinch of freshly ground black pepper
1 tbsp sherry
1/2 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp salt
4-5 tortillas (I had planned on using corn tortillas, but only wheat tortillas were available in our store)
oil for frying
1 1/2 cup grated mozzarella cheese
3/4 cup creme fraiche

The pie is served with a sauce, for which you will need the following ingredients:
1 cup small tomatoes
2 tbsp water
1/2 vegetable stock cube
1 jalapeno, roughly chopped
1 garlic clove
small bunch of parsley
1/4 cup creme fraiche

Preheat the oven to 175°C (350°F). Heat the oil in a saucepan. Add the pork and garlic. Stir until the meat has browned. Stir in the sausages, oregano, cinnamon, cloves and pepper. Cook for 4 more minutes while stirring. Then add sherry sugar and salt. Stir for 3-4 minutes and then remove the pan from heat.

Cut the tortillas into strips (2 cm (3/4 inch) wide). Pour the oil into a frying pan and heat to 190°C (375°F). Fry the tortilla strips until crisp and golden brown.

Spread half the pork and sausage mixture in a baking dish. Top with half the tortilla strips and some grated cheese. Then add dollops of creme fraiche. Repeat the layers. Bake for 20-25 minutes.

Meanwhile, make the sauce. Put all the ingredients except the creme fraiche in a food processor or blender. Process until fairly smooth. Put into a saucepan, bring to a boil, lower the heat and simmer for 5 minutes. Finally stir the creme fraiche into the sauce and add some salt and pepper.

Pour the sauce on top of the pie and serve immediately, sprinkled with some parsley.


Hey, we've forgotten to tell you about our phaal...

Matli did cook the phaal curry last Thursday night, and we had it with fresh cilantro and rice for dinner last Friday. It should be even hotter than Vindaloo, so I was a bit frightend, but nah! It wasn't that hot! I'd say that the Vindaloo we made from a Rafi curry pack was way hotter than this Phaal. Nevertheless, it tasted really good. Still, I don't think we'll order it again. We are definitly going to choose Bombay Potato when we place our next order, and if we pick something more we've already tried I think it'll be the Vindaloo. Simple and great.

And we've also found a great beer to all the indian food. It's Cobra. A good choice, because there are few wines that can cope with the spices and the chile in indian food.

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Shape and color

This is Jamaican Bell. Said to be nice to fill with cheese. It should be harvested when red, så maybe this is what we'll be having this weekend?

Sunday, September 25, 2005

Fish curry from last Sunday

Last Sunday we had this really thick and creamy fish curry for dinner. It was as lovely as it looks. The problem is that it's been a lot of creamy stuff lately. We can't continue like that. It's time to shape up a little bit, so for today we'll have something less fat. Yesterday we had a fantastic mexican dinner, which wasn't really low-fat in any way, but more about that later. Here is a pic of the rich and creamy fish curry we won't be having again for some time now...

Little yellow bastard

The 10th I showed you some green chiles not ready for harvest. It was some of our Hot Lemon. Well, now this little bastard is getting ready, which we can see at this picture. Some of the fruit have turned yellow. Now we have to figure out the best way to use this lemonish chile. It's the first year of this chile for us, so we have no idea. We have to search the Internet for some information. But it sure looks yummy all yellow among the green leaves.

Thursday, September 22, 2005

Great chicken at Little Bangkok

There is a fairly new thai restaurant in town (Linköping, Sweden, that is), by the same people that have had the takeaway thai restaurant Wokaway for some years now. Little Bangkok is the name, and the food is great. Today I had some kind of fairly dry chicken made with red dry chile peppers, which was served with rice and a hot sauce. This place is a bit different than most lunch restaurants in town. The food is actually spicy when said to be! Well, you don't get burned, but there is spice and they use a lot of chile pepper. If it was less expensive I could eat there several days every week. It's a bit high price for lunch, but from time to time it is definitly worth it.

Now I'm waiting for my fiancé to start preparing tomorrow's dinner. Our last chile paste pack from Rafi's, UK. Now we have to make a new order :-)

And to survive the lovely smell from the kitchen I'll go to bed. Tomorrow is Phaal curry time!

Saturday, September 17, 2005

...and some spicy food

And for dinner we had an improvised mex dinner made of what we had at home. It turned out really yummy and a bit spicy. It contained some of our anaheim chile and some chipotle we had at home. Chipotle has a nice smoke flavour, which is great with most food.

Lazy Saturday

Today I had a lazy Saturday. All the chile plants have been taken care of and are happy in the living room. The problem is space. Now the room looks more like a greenhouse than anything else. There are still some plants waiting for us to figure out a better place for them, but they are warm and sheltered from the weather. That's the most important thing right now. Now we only have to look out for bugs and lices, so we don't get a boost of that, like we had another year when we had to take them in early.

After taken care of the chile I took care of some apples from the garden. I made a wonderful apple cake, in american style. It was so easy, I still remember the recipe in my head. There were no spice in it more than cinnamon, so it really doesn't belong here, but... I will make an exception!

Really easy and tasty Apple pie
5 apples cut into really thin slices

1 cup plain flour
1 cup sugar
1 tsp baking powder
2 tsp vanilla sugar
½ tsp salt
1 egg
100 g melted butter

Put all the apple slices in a pie dish and add some cinnamon. Mix all the dry stuff in a bowl, and then add the melted butter and the egg (beaten). Stir until you have a nice dough. Put the dough over the apples and push it until it covers everything. Then add some cinnamon again.

Bake for 40 minutes in 200 degrees celsius in the lower part of the oven. Serve with vanilla sauce.

Friday, September 16, 2005


Last night the temperature went below zero. Winter is here, or at least autumn. So now we have to save our chile plants. Some of them have already been taken care of, and they are now warm and safe in our living room. The rest will be taken care of tomorrow. They don't like when it's cold, but they all look like if they have survived. I hope that's the whole truth...

Saturday, September 10, 2005

Harvest? Not yet...

It's not really time to harvest yet, but some of our chile plants have beautiful fruit. Some green, some more yellow and some are purple. Still no red ones, we're waiting for that. I wonder if this Hot Lemon is ready to harvest yet. It's green, but maybe that's how it should be harvested? I would have guessed it should turn more yellow, since it's called Hot Lemon, but of course it doesn't have to be yellow to taste lemonish. Maybe it's time to try it soon?

Friday, September 09, 2005

Panang thai

Today we had a spicy dinner. It was a panang curry made without any recipe, but it contained curry paste, chicken, pineapple, almonds, star anise, cilantro and jalapeño (from our own harvest, and found on a picture here about a week ago :-)

As always with thai food it tasted great. We love the thai cuisine. And it had a nice hot feeling, on the lips and in the belly. To this we had a glass of Tokay Pinot Gris from Bestheim, Alsace, France. A perfect start of the weekend.

Saturday, September 03, 2005


Today we bought some "Beef Bontana" and "Chicken Bontana" from Texas Longhorn and it tasted delicious. Hungry as we were we jumped at it when we got home, so there were no pictures taken of it. But it consisted of tortilla chips, cheese, black beans, onion, pickled jalapeños and of cource beef or chicken. Great! Not so spicy though, but you can't have it hot every day.

Disaster help after Katrina

Many people in New Orleans and it's surroundings are in need of help. Do think about making a donation. It's easy to donate using paypal, I just did this. Just because this disaster has happened in a fairly rich country doesn't mean that the people in need are rich and can help themselves. Use your heart.