Lamb axoa is a recipe typical of the Basque region, prepared in the same fashion as a stew. In France, lamb tongue and hooves are used to further flavor the dish, but I have omitted them here. Serve with a crusty French bread and red wine. Again, substitute hot paprika or New Mexican red chile powder for the Espelette. If you wish to make this more of a stew, add two potatoes, finely chopped, and double the bouillon.
Piperade is a colorful pepper sauce that is only spicy when made in the Basque region. This simple but delicious dish is often served at the Celebration of the Peppers. Serve it boiled potatoes and green beans.
The most famous chile in France is piment d’ Espelette, or the Espelette pepper, and it has become a cultural and culinary icon in the French part of Basque country. At first the Espelette farmers formed cooperative enterprises to protect their interests, and eventually they applied to the National Institute for Trade Name Origins for an Appellation d’Origine Controlee (AOC). On December 1, 1999, an AOC was granted to Espelette peppers and products, giving it the same protection as more famous names, such as Champagne sparkling wine. Only ten villages are allowed to use the name “Espelette”: Espelette, Ainhoa, Cambo les Bains, Halsou, Itsassou, Jatsou, Laressore, St. Pee sur Nivelle, Souraide, and Ustarritz. The total growing area is about 3,000 acres. Piperade is a colorful pepper sauce that is only spicy when made in the Basque region. This simple but delicious sauce is often served at the Celebration of the Peppers in the village of Espelette. Serve it over boiled potatoes and green beans.
This sauce is thought to be of Tunisian origin, but is found throughout all of North Africa and the Middle East under various names and spellings. It is used to flavor couscous and grilled dishes such as brochettes, and also as a relish with salads. Cover this sauce with a thin film of olive oil and it will keep up to a couple of months in the refrigerator.