For spice fans, some food with zing

BOOKMARK

March 15, 2006|By ROHINA PHADNIS | ROHINA PHADNIS,SUN REPORTER

Some Like It Hot

Spicy Favorites From the World's Hot Zones

Hot Hot Hot!

Cooking With Fire and Spice

By Paul Gayler

Kyle Books / 2005 / $19.95

Paul Gayler, a British chef, begins the book with an interesting introduction to his life and culinary experiences. An extensive list of "hot and spicy ingredients" follows, a perfect guide for anyone still learning his or her way around the kitchen.

The true star of the cookbook is the imaginative and captivating art. The text is easy to follow, but the book does not offer a lot of background on the dishes. Recipes range from elaborate entrees to quick side dishes and sauces.

The jalapeno corn bread is a great starting point for those just introducing their tastebuds to the world of chiles. It provides enough of a kick to accompany a bold entree. For adventurous cooks and spice lovers, the book offers plenty of enticing recipes.

rohina.phadnis@baltsun.com

Chile Con Queso

Serves 6

30 fresh green jalapeno chiles

1/4 cup vegetable oil

1 medium-size onion, thinly sliced

1 ripe medium-size tomato, peeled, seeded and coarsely chopped

3/4 cup light cream

1/2 pound mixed Mexican queso Chihuahua and queso asadero or mixed mild white cheddar and Monterey Jack cheese, diced

salt to taste

Place the chiles on a flat rack from your roasting pan and then place the rack over a burner and turn the heat to high. Blister the chiles black on all sides, moving the rack and turning the chiles when necessary. Alternatively, you can grill the chiles.

Remove the chiles and, when cool enough to handle, rub off as much blackened skin as you can. Cut in half and remove the seeds, then slice into thin strips and set aside.

In a medium-size skillet, heat the vegetable oil over medium heat, then cook the onion until it is translucent, about 7 minutes, stirring. Add the chile strips and tomato to the skillet, cover, and cook until soft, about 8 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the cream and cook another 2 minutes. Stir in the cheese until it melts. Season with salt and serve.

From "Some Like It Hot: Spicy Favorites From the World's Hot Zones"

Per serving: 314 calories, 10 grams protein, 26 grams fat, 12 grams saturated fat, 10 grams carbohydrate, 3 grams fiber, 59 milligrams cholesterol, 248 milligrams sodium

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