Part of the delight of hot foods is their ability to transform dull, everyday food into a spicy treat. Following are a few simple suggestions as well as menu ideas.
- One or two poached eggs atop plain steamed rice. Top with Salsa Fresca or Marlena’s Salsa, and garnish with coriander leaves.
- Sopa de Tortilla: Break up several crisp fried tostada shells or fry strips of fresh corn tortillas. Add a handful to bowls filled with hot chicken stock, cubes of avocado pears, salsa of choice and thinly sliced spring onions.
- Top a soft corn tortilla that you’ve warmed in a lightly oiled pan with several juicy prawns, a little grated cheese, a jolt of salsa and thinly sliced onions.
- Nasturtiums, those peppery, vividly coloured edible flowers, make an enchanting addition to a fresh summer salad, and they taste like nippier-than-usual watercress.
- Add a spoonful of Salsa Verde to fish or chicken stock, then poach clams or mussels in this mixture until they pop open. Garnish with coriander leaves and lime wedges.
- Quickest Salsa: Whirl pickled jalapeño or serrano chillies, stems removed, in a liquidizer or processor, adding just enough of the brine to make a salsa consistency.
- Good fresh chips are delicious with a zesty salsa instead of vinegar or ketchup.
- Thai Prawn and Orange Salad: Arrange fresh sweet orange slices and juicy cooked prawns on a plate and dress with lemon juice, a pinch of sugar and a dash of Thai Chilli Sauce (commercial is fine). Garnish with fresh mint leaves.
- Avocado Pear and Salsa Sandwiches: Spread thickly sliced wholemeal bread with unsalted butter, then top with sliced avocado pear, a drizzle of lemon juice and a spoonful of mild salsa, and garnish with thinly sliced red or other mild onion.