Back home in India, we used to relish the pickled chilies or mirchi ka achar, where good quality of mirchi or chilies are chosen with great care, and then stuffed with pickle spices , drenched in hot mustard oil and infused with the flavor of fennel, cumin, mustard etc. The other way to enjoy it as an appetizer, where the jalapeno or korean chilies are coated with seasoned chickpeas flour and then deep-fried in hot oil, and on an overcast monsoon day you can relish these hot mirchi bhajjis with a cup of coffee…some of the simple pleasures in life. No discussion of chilies can be ever completed without mentioning the celebrated mirchi ka salan from the cuisines of Hyderabad. The lip smacking dish successfully wins every heart whether you love or hate the chilies.
- Chili peppers : 4
- 4 tbsp Grated coconut
- 1 medium Red onion (thinly sliced)
- 1 small packet Candied ginger
- handful of Raisins
- 1 tbsp Bread crumbs
- 1/2 cup Shredded cheddar or Parmesan cheese
- 1 tbsp Olive oil
- Salt and pepper to taste
Preparing the chilies
- leave the stalk intact and cut (lengthwise) the chili in half with a knife, take extra care while handling the chilies. Discard the seed and membrane with the help of a knife or spoon. Do not touch the seeds and membrane with your hand.
- Drop the chilies in boiling water for couple of minutes, drain and let it dry. Blanching the chilies, this way will reduce the heat or spiciness of chilies.
- Preparing the filling : Heat a tablespoon of olive oil in a pan, and then brown the sliced onion for few moments.
- Once the onions are browned evenly, add the grated coconut, candied ginger, raisins, seasoned it well with salt and pepper. If you wish, you can add little cumin powder also.
- Stir for few moments on low heat. Take off the heat and add bread crumbs in it. Mix them well.
- Let the filling cool slightly before stuffing the chili peppers.
- With the help of a tea-spoon, fill the halved chili peppers with coconut mixture and topped each of them with cheese.
- Bake in a preheated oven at 350 F for 15-20 minute or until the cheese melts.
- Serve the stuffed chili pepper immediately.