There are five major species of chile peppers and thousands of varieties, in a wide range of sizes, shapes and colors. Even experts disagree about how many there actually are. So it is probably not surprising that the spelling for the word itself is somewhat problematic. Is it chili, chilli or chile? You are likely to come across all of those spellings if you are reading up on the topic.
This comprehensive book (which serves as both a reference and a cookbook) from bestselling author and expert researcher Judith Finlayson takes you through dozens of chiles and provides absorbing information on everything from the historical and geographic origins of chiles to information on the Scoville scale (which measures the hotness of a chile and was invented by Wilbur Scoville) to the health benefits of chiles and finally, 250 delicious and inventive recipes.
Full color throughout, this book takes inspiration from chiles and embraces them with an enthusiasm that maximizes their true flavor potential. From fiery Tex-Mex inspired meals to savory and sweet Thai dishes, this incredible collection of recipes is sure to make you a lover of all things chile.
The robust flavors in this traditional Mexican dish are delicious and perfect for a casual evening with friends. Add the chipotle pepper if you like heat and a bit of smoke. To continue the Mexican theme, serve with a tossed green salad that includes a diced avocado, and warm fresh tortillas.
In many parts of Mexico, no special occasion is complete without turkey cooked in mole poblano. The authentic dish is quite a production; this simplified version is delicious nonetheless. Serve with hot tortillas, fluffy white rice and creamed corn.
This rich, comforting mélange is called Indian_Style to distinguish it from Thai Cashew Chicken, which is a very different dish, although equally delicious. Serve this over brown basmati rice with zesty mango chutney, but other robust fruit chutneys work well, too. Add a green vegetable, such as steamed broccoli, to round out the color palette.
Served with dark rye bread this hearty soup makes a soul-satisfying meal. It has the best flavor when it’s made with a combination of beef and vegetable broth, but if you’re a vegetarian, vegetable broth works well, too.
Years ago, when my husband, daughter and I traveled in Thailand, we became addicted to mangos and sticky rice, a truly delicious sweet. After our return, we tried but could never duplicate the superb taste and texture of the authentic version. Although this black sticky rice pudding is a different dish, it reminds me of that delightful concoction. In fact, it’s so good you don’t even need the fruit. Although it’s high in saturated fat, it comes from the coconut milk, which may have healthful benefits.
Here’s a fresh twist on the classic Southern dish of red beans and rice. Bulked up with muscular red rice, this is very hearty — with the addition of salad, it’s a meal in itself. The green peas add a burst of color, making this a visually attractive dish that looks good on a buffet. It is particularly tasty as an accompaniment to roast chicken or pork, or pork chops or a platter of roasted vegetables.