"Oh don't worry, that's just my mom blending hot chilies. You get used to it after a while."
It was the most bizarre sensation related to food aroma I had ever experienced. (I was also not very old, but still.. none of my Indian influences had ever done this to my lungs!)
The funny thing is, that feeling didn't come from smoke at all. It was the fumes released into all the rooms of the house by the chilis and their seeds after having been grilled during the blending for a very satisfying chipotle salsa. I thought I could never in the world sit through that again without coughing incessantly, but as the years went by, I did get used to it, and I even craved it. I didn't really know what it was called, but whenever I felt that throat catching feeling in her house, I knew we were in for something good.
Today I was able to recreate that feeling, although some of it was actually a mixture of smoke and chipotle fumes.
I achieved my goal by making an amazing marinade for my turkey cutlets (but you can easily use chicken) and grilling them. I used a griddle pan (hence the house smoke) but this would work just as well on a bbq or plancha, if you don't think your lungs can handle it.
Yield 1 cup
4 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce
3 Tbsp EVOO
juice from 1/2 very juicy orange
juice from 1 lime
1 large handful flat leaf parsley
3 peeled garlic cloves
1/2 tsp cumin
lots of cracked black pepper
Pico de Gallo:
1 large shallot, minced
1 tomato, chopped
1/2 large avocado, chopped
2 Tbsp chopped feta
1 handful chopped flat leaf parsley
6-7 chopped basil leaves
juice from 1/4 lime
cracked black pepper
1. Blend all the marinade ingredients together.
2. Lavishly slather it on to your turkey cutlets or whatever cut of meat you are preparing. Let marinate for at least 1 hour, but preferably overnight.
3. Grill or griddle your meat and be sure to inhale, and let your eyes roll back as you cough with pleasure.
4. When you are done with your chili cough, make the pico de gallo by stirring all the chopped ingredients together. This will be a nice salsa to spoon over your beans or to accompany your grilled meat.
I served this with some Chipotle Black Beans (no pinto this time) into which I added about 1/2 cup roasted Bernettine squash. The addition of the squash gave it a nice consistency.
I also served some red and basmati rice with a custom pico de gallo.
I'm not even sure I'm allowed to call it pico de gallo, but it served its purpose well.
Today was a good day...