September 09, 2005

Manzano Chiles

I was excited to discover that my local supermarket was selling a box of fresh Manzano Chiles. In Mexico, they are known as "chile apples" due to their round shape, golden color and the hard black seeds inside. The walls are very thick and juicy, reminding me of a bell pepper, but the heat from this chile is between that of a serrano and a habanero. Manzanos are related to the rocoto chile that many chileheads rave about and which has piqued my curiosity more than once. In the few recipes that I discovered that listed this chile as an alternate, it usually subbed for habanero chiles.

I used four of these unusual chiles as the base ingredient for a "Grilled Jerk Chicken" marinade. It is made with all fresh ingredients such as onions, thyme and scallions and lots of different spices. All of it was pureed together in my blender and now waits in the fridge for the chicken breasts. According to the instructions, the chicken has to marinate for a full day. I'll be popping the chicken into the marinade tomorrow morning before I leave for work.

If I find that I like these chiles, I'm going to go back to the supermarket in a few days and purchase a few of the pods for their seeds. I'll dry them and put them into my garden next spring. It is going to be an interesting experiment.

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