A few days ago someone gave me a big bag of home-grown chilies. Now, don’t get me wrong: I love chilies and spicy food in general. But there’s probably 40 chilies in that bag, which is a little bit much for one person! So I’m going to be eating a lot of spicy food this week. I don’t even know the names of a lot of these peppers. The big red ones are mildly spicy and have a strong pepper flavor. The golden ones are spicier, like a mild jalapeno but still have really good flavor. The small red ones are Thai bird chilies, and they are very, very hot.
I used the golden peppers in the sauce, but really, any chili would do. Those round cherry peppers or even red jalapenos would make a nice substitute, I think. I like my food really spicy, so feel free to use less peppers if you would like!
So, 3 chilies down, 37 to go. Let me know if you have any suggestions on how I might use them, please!
Golden Chili-Tomato Spaghetti (serves 2)
2 cloves garlic
3 yellow chilies
12-15 cherry tomatoes, or 3 regular sized tomatoes
½ tsp salt
6-10 basil leaves, cut in a chiffonade
¼ cup soy Greek yoghurt, tofutti sour cream, tofutti cream cheese, or other creamy, non-sweet substance
Spaghetti or capellini, enough for 2 people
Peel the garlic cloves and cut them in half. Cut the chilies vertically in half. Remove the seeds and membranes. Slice the chilies fairly thinly. Heat the olive oil in a small sauce pan over medium-high heat. When the oil is hot, add the chilies and garlic and sauté for a few minutes.
Start the water for the pasta. Meanwhile, cut the tomatoes: if you are using cherry tomatoes (that was what I had on hand at the time) cut them into quarters; if you are using regular ones cut them into eighths. Add the tomatoes and salt to the chilies, turn the heat down to medium low, and cover the pot.
When the pasta water boils, add the spaghetti and cook according to the package directions. A few minutes before the pasta is done, the tomatoes should have broken down to a saucy mixture. When this happens, take the sauce off the heat. Stir in most of the basil and the yoghurt/cream cheese. Drain the pasta and mix with the sauce. Serve garnished with the remaining basil.