When I write “flavored,” I mean it, as I have chosen the chiles that impart the most distinct flavors. The raisiny flavor of the pasilla melds with the apricot overtones of the habanero and the earthiness of the New Mexican chile to create a finely-tuned fiery sipping vodka. Of course, use an excellent vodka like Stolichnaya or Absolut. Note: This recipe requires advance preparation.
Ata is the Yoruba word for chile pepper, and Nigerian chiles range from the tiny ata wewe to the large ata funfun. It is served like a relish or dip with many West African dishes, particularly grilled meats. Variation: Add 1 bell pepper, chopped
This is one of the classic paprika recipes from Hungary. But sure to use only imported paprika in this dish, or the flavor will not be the same. It is traditionally cooked with lard or goose fat and served with dumplings. Serve over egg noodles, plain rice, or boiled potatoes.
Pronounced "saa-tay", these very popular Southeast Asian snack foods make delicious appetizers or a great barbecue dish, and are made with a variety of meats and seafood. For this recipe I have used chicken, cut in traditional strips and threaded on wooden skewers. Substitute pork, or even chicken wings.
Chicos are dried roasted corn kernels and are also the name of a very popular dish in Northern New Mexico. Traditionally, the corn is dried in the hornos or Indian ovens, which gives it a smoky taste. Today, however, most of the chicos are dried in commercial ovens and lack the distinctive taste.
The chiles that are traditionally used for this sauce are the ones pulled off the ristras or strings of dried chiles. Ristras are not just used for decoration--this is one method of sun drying or preserving the fall chile crop for use throughout the year. Use this sauce in a number of dishes, as a topping for enchiladas and tacos, as a basis for stews like posole, or any recipe that calls for a red sauce.
The technique of soaking a food in a liquid to flavor it—or in the case of meats, to tenderize the cut—was probably brought to the Caribbean by the Spanish. A marinade is easier to use than a paste, and when grilling your jerk meats, the marinade can also be used as a basting sauce. “In Jamaica,” notes food writer Robb Walsh, “like Texas barbecue, jerk is served on butcher paper and eaten with your hands.” Serve this version of jerk with a salad and grilled plantains.