Sunday, October 07, 2007
How To Make Minorcan Datil Pepper Relish
Let's make datil pepper relish.
Just follow the recipe above and I'll guide you through it with some pics and commentary.
VERY IMPORTANT NOTE: The recipe is for a single batch, the pictures are of a triple batch.
I didn't photograph the jar and utensil sterilization steps, but you boil everything ... jars, tongs, funnel, lids, caps ... ad infinitum. If that information is new to you, go read a canning book before you attempt any of this. Botulism's a bummer.
The recipe card above is the recipe my Mom uses and I believe it came to her from my late Aunt Florence.
You will need to seed the peppers unless you have a death wish, so prepare accordingly. My Dad loves to tell the tale of how he volunteered to seed the peppers for Mom once without gloves. I won't tell it here as it involves the bathroom. Just wear your gloves okay?
Datil peppers are small and seeding them involves destemming, cutting the pepper in half, and scooping out the seeds.
Seeding them was my job as Mrs. FC did everything else.
After the peppers are seeded, chop them fine. I did this job too as I still had my gloves on. Keep the gloves on until all peppery utensils have been rinsed and the peppery countertop is cleaned. We used our little Black and Decker minichopper thingie for the fine chopping of the peppers.
Cook the mixture on a very low heat to reduce the liquid and make it more relishy. We call this relish, but it's more of a wet relish when done ... somewhere between true sauce and true relish in my opinion.
Mrs. FC told Junior and I to give the pot a stir any time we walked into the kitchen and that is what we did. We actually let it cook for about 2 1/2 hours on extremely low heat.
The vinegary peppery vapors rising from the pot are hard to describe. The entire house smells wonderful, and if you lean over the pot and inhale, your sinuses clear instantly and you gain a few extra IQ points.
I'm not kidding.
The finished product.
Pass the fried shrimp and whiting please.