Yields about 7 half-pint jars
Growing in the greenhouse - at the end of December! - were a handful of chili plants; planted at my request: a habeñero, a fresno, a pablano hybrid and another unidentified red chili. They caught my eye yesterday as I was feeding the goats. The traffic cone orange habeneros are so vivid on a dark, late fall day.
I harvested a total of about 20 hot peppers; varying in heat from a fairly subtle pablano to the “set-your-face-on-fire” habanero. These peppers, along with a few pounds of last-of-the-season sweet peppers we have tucked away in the walk-in cooler, make a beautiful and equally tasty pepper & shallot jam for this weekend’s menu. I put up six half-pint jars of the jam and tuck them away in the larder. They will be an accent for hors d’oeuvres and cheese plates all through the winter, as we wait for the sun to return in earnest.
Who would have expected chilis from the Yucatan in our greenhouse on the winter solstice?
4 C Sliced, seedless peppers (red bell, habanero, pablano, serrano, jalapeño, etc.)
3 C Shallots, sliced
1 C Rice Vinegar
2 ½ C Sugar
1 t Salt
3 T Pectin (original powdered style) mixed with another ¼ C of sugar
2 T Butter
¼ C Lemon Juice
Brown the shallots in a very hot cast iron skillet. In a sauce pan, bring the vinegar, sugar and salt to a boil. Add the shallots and peppers to the vinegar mixture and bring to a boil. Boil for 5 minutes. Sprinkle in the pectin-sugar mixture, stirring constantly. Boil an additional 2 minutes. Add the lemon juice. Adjust the seasoning with salt and more lemon juice if desired.
Fill sterilized jars with the jam. Process in boiling water for 15 minutes.