The thing I love most about spring and summer is the changing and bountiful variety of fresh produce. To me it is eye candy just to see it in the stores. I like to find things I have never tried before and bring them home to make, hopefully, something wonderful. Such was the case with my most recent find, Hungarian Wax Peppers.
Hungarian Wax Peppers look like very large banana peppers. Most commonly they are sold when yellow, but if allowed to continue ripening, they turn red. The flavor is sweet and mildly hot.
I knew I had some chorizo sausage in the fridge so that gave me the idea to stuff them. To be honest, when I started out, I was going to make this with a marinara sauce, but as I was cooking it, I really started to get more of a south of the border vibe and went, instead, with a tequila lime sauce. My husband loved them. I thought they needed more heat so I added some of the seeds to the sauce recipe.
6-8 Hungarian Wax Peppers, halved and seeded with tops left on. They should look like little boats to hold the stuffing. Reserve ¼ tsp or more of the seeds.
1 to 1 1/2 lbs Chorizo Sausage
1 large onion, chopped fine
6 cloves fresh garlic, smashed and chopped fine
8 oz cream cheese, softened
4 oz shredded Mexican cheese
Drizzle some olive oil, just enough to keep the sausage from sticking (1-2 TBS), on the bottom of a hot large skillet. Add the sausage, onion and garlic. Sauté over medium heat until the sausage is cooked through. Drain fat. Allow meat to cool to room temperature.
Stuff meat mixture into the pepper boats and place on baking sheets. The peppers may be odd shaped and not want to lay flat so to prevent them from tipping, you can lightly crumple a small piece of aluminum foil to place beside or underneath and act as a cradle holding the stuffing side up.
Bake stuffed peppers in pre-heated oven at 350◦ for 30 minutes. Mix sauce while baking. After 30 minutes, turn off oven, sprinkle peppers with Mexican cheese, and return to oven to allow the cheese to melt. Serve over dirty rice and top with Tequila Lime Sauce.
Tequila Lime Sauce:
¼ c butter
3 cloves garlic, crushed and chopped fine
½ c chicken broth
2 TBS chopped fresh Cilantro
1 TBS sugar
½ tsp sea salt
½ tsp lime zest
¼ tsp reserved pepper seeds
1 TBS corn starch
¼ c lime juice
2 TBS tequila, the better the brand, the better the flavor in the sauce. (never cook with a liquor or wine that you wouldn’t drink)
Melt the butter in a medium sauce pan. Add garlic and sauté until golden.
Stir in chicken broth, cilantro, sugar, salt, lime zest, and pepper seeds. Simmer for 5 minutes.
Mix cornstarch and lime juice together in small bowl with wire whisk until cornstarch is well blended. Stir this mixture into the simmering sauce and stir constantly until color clears and sauce is thickened.
Add tequila and whisk into sauce. (for less Tequila bite, you can add the tequila with the chicken broth and allow it to cook)