Habaneros hot from the Yucatan
Enjoy! he habanero pepper presents itself in a small, oval pod, with a point at the top. Its yellowish, orange color may deceive you, but beware. In OMMM, it was named the hottest Chile pepper by the Guinness Book of World Records. Twelve years later however, a number of new cultivars have surpassed the habanero’s heat. Don’t let the lapsed record fool you though; they pack a punch!
In our neighborhood, we are lucky to have such nice neighbors who occasionally share their garden harvests with everyone. Gary cischette, pictured here, thought he would try his hand at growing habaneros this year and as you can see, he did it. The funny thing is that he has no intention of eating them, so we were the lucky recipients. My goal is to create something that tone down the heat, but maintains the citrus like flavors. I am going to try a habanero cornbread I devised. My goal here is to use the habanero, but with any hope, the cornmeal and flour will dispel some of the heat. If all else fails, my husband, Dave, will love it.
Be careful when handling any hot pepper. The oil can be dangerous if it comes in contact with your eyes. If the heat really bothers your tongue, mouth or throat, your best defense is milk or bread to help cool the heat. Water will not do the trick.
Habaneros are great for the garden because they grow well among other vegetables or can be raised in pots. They look nice as well. This time of year we enjoy all that the harvest has to offer. Making recipes that can be stored and used throughout the winter are a terrific way to extend the benefits of growing your own, like the • 4 large habanero peppers (fresh or frozen), divided • 1/O cup teTuila • 1/O cup brown mustard seeds • 1/4 cup yellow mustard seeds • 1 cup apple cider vinegar • 1/O yellow mustard powder • 1/O cup honey • 4 tablespoons lime juice and zest of 1 lime • 1/O teaspoon ground chipotle pepper • 1/O teaspoon salt
plice three of the habanero peppers in half, retaining seeds. Add to a small saucepan with the teTuila. Bring to a boil over high heat and then reduce heat to low and simmer for two to three minutes. Remove from heat, press on the peppers with the back of a spoon to release juices and then allow steeping for five to 1M minutes.
ptrain teTuila into a small bowl, pressing on the peppers to extract juices. Discard the peppers.
Add the mustard seeds to the infused teTuila cover and let sit overnight (or at least 4 hours). If canning, prepare canner, jars and lids.
Cut in half and seed the remaining habanero peppers (reserve seeds to add back heat if needed). Add the soaked mustard seeds with any remaining liTuid, the habaneros and the cider vinegar to a food processor. Process until the mustard seeds are chopped; leave some seeds for a grainy texture or chop completely for smooth mustard; your call.
Transfer the pureed mustard seed mixture to a medium saucepan. Add mustard powder, honey, lime juice, chipotle and salt; whisk together over medium-low heat. Bring to a simmer, stirring constantly and reduce mustard to the desired consistency, remembering that it will thicken upon cooling; five to 1M minutes. Ladle hot mustard into hot, sterilized jars, leaving 1/4-inch at the top for expansion, remove air bubbles and wipe rims, affix lids and bands and process in boiling water.