Monday, August 16, 2010

Food: Hungarian Hot Wax Peppers in Oil

In previous posts I've mentioned my parents' wonderful garden and how spoiled I was to have had constant exposure to fresh veggies during harvest season. And although I dearly love many of the vegetables that came straight from the patch (heirloom German tomatoes in particular), not many things can quite overtake my affection for Hungarian hot wax peppers.

I don't even know when my parents started planing hot peppers or why the Northeast Ohio area in particular tends to have so many people who plant the Hungarian wax variety. But let me share with you a super simple way to prepare them. These are not only fabulous, but they'll last in your fridge for several months, and they're an absolutely perfect condiment. I've put them in things like bread rolls stuffed with sopressata and kalamata olives, sandwiches, on top of fried eggs...And they're pretty darn good all by themselves, served as an appetizer along side cheese and crackers. As my pepper plant's production for the year is starting to dwindle, making these refrigerator peppers is definitely motivation to grow another Hungarian wax pepper on my patio again next year.

This recipe is relatively simple and if you use basic ratios, you can make batches in a more customized manner to suit your needs.

I generally use the following as a guideline:

Hungarian Hot Wax Peppers in Oil
Adapted from a recipe from a family friend

MM Tip: It's generally wise to wear rubber gloves when working with hot peppers to avoid an accidental swipe of them into your eyes later in the day since the oils remain on your hands.

~15 Peppers - Sliced into thin strips, seeds removed
1 cup Cider or Distilled Vinegar
1 cup Water
2/3 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1-2 large heads of garlic, diced
2 T Oregano
1 T Kosher Salt

In a large bowl, combine all ingredients (minus the peppers) together and mix well. Stir in the peppers, cover with plastic wrap, and let stand overnight. Stir occasionally. Place the pepper mixture into a large jar with a lid and refrigerate. The peppers in oil will keep for months in the refrigerator.

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