"If you say you're allergic, they can't put them in your food." -- this was a random early memory of pepper avoidance at a restaurant that my mom swears didn't happen. Because a pepper allergy apparently runs in our family. This means that until I was 18, I didn't fully know the magic of peppers... until I was out on my own (spoiler alert: I fell in love pretty damn quickly). And I DEFINITELY didn't know the magic of Hatch Chile Peppers until I was a full time resident of Texas, and Hatch Chile Pepper season was in full swing.
These spicy little peppers are full of flavor and perfect in just about anything. The secret, in my opinion, is to add something creamy to the mix. The spicy peppers pair well with all sorts of cheeses and cream bases.
For HEB's Pepperific Extravaganza, to celebrate the store's Chilefest, they asked bloggers to throw a pepper party! Here's what was on my menu, in order of appearance:
- Beer bread muffins with a queso core
- Cold hatch gazpacho
- Brie en croute with roasted hatch chile peppers and blackberry jam
- Ricotta Tarte with roasted hatch chiles, caramelized onions, and bacon jam (veg version: no bacon jam, subbed in fresh tomatoes)
- Stuffed jalapenos (from HEB, no hatches actually--oops!)
- Gnocchi mac and cheese with hatch chiles and caramelized onions
- Street corn with roasted hatch chiles
- Glazed carrots with chiles
- Raspberry chile sorbet
Check back and I'll be posting choice recipes from the party! And remember, Pepper Mania goes until August 18th at HEB! Check your local store for fun events, demos, samples, and more!