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Red Chillies

Indian Name
Laal Mirch
These chillies are hotter than jalapeños. Though much-maligned for imparting a hotness that can be unbearable and lasting, red chillies used in conjunction with other spices can add zing to any boring dish. Chilli powder, salt and some vegetables are good enough for making tasty dishes. Shake up some chilli powder with potato chips for a different snack. Or heat some oil, add ground chillies, some garlic, a dash of salt and a dash of cumene powder to make a hot sauce that can be used to spice up a dish while serving.
For a two-person dish 2 red chillies would be mild, 5 would begin to get spicy, and double-digit quantities are only for the brave.
Split and browned in hot oil, or freshly ground, either before or after mild browning in oil.
If browning in oil, do not blacken. If blackened, discard and start over. If excess chilli has been added to a dish containing tomatoes, use ketchup to reduce the hotness.
Chilli powder, paprika, cayenne, black pepper.
Chilli powder is very spicy, and it is not a wise idea to inflict it on guests who cannot stand it. Excessively spicy food can cause indigestion and heartburn. Chilli tends to mask other flavours if used indiscreetly.

Anand Natrajan
Thu Dec 19 15:13:35 EST 1996