When I write about something I’m obsessed with, I always like to recall when I first fell in love with that something. I recall now, that I saw Aleppo pepper in the restaurant kitchen where I worked in another life ;-).
It called me to be considered as the “it” ingredient for my Spicy Chocolate Tiramisu. Inspired by Thiago Silva of the Brazilian National Team, my dessert was the first in a series of recipes I developed to honor the most beautiful players of Brazil’s 2014 World Cup. I featured those inspired dishes on my blackboard menu at BarComida.
A little 411 on my obsession ~ Aleppo pepper comes from southern Turkey, near the Syrian town of Aleppo; Aleppo happens to be considered a culinary mecca of the Mediterranean.
It is considered the type of red pepper that you taste “at the back” and it is a richly flavorful alternative to crushed chili flakes, with its “fruity” quality.
I’ve actually yet to make my chocolate dessert with Aleppo pepper but, I have learned since that it is, in fact, an excellent pepper to blend with chocolate. I will be making this Chili Chocolate Bark, sometime yesterday.
I own a generous supply of Aleppo pepper by now. A new rendition of Spicy Chocolate Tiramisu for Thiago Silva will be on the menu soon.
Meanwhile, rifling through a terribly unorganized recipe file a few weeks ago, I came across a recipe card with a glaze for short ribs using Aleppo pepper. With chicken thighs on hand, I adapted the recipe to suit the ingredients I had handy, including some newly-purchased Aleppo pepper I’d bought on a whim at the Old Pasadena Farmers Market one Sunday morning.
What resulted was one of my best experiments ever. My having posted its photograph on Facebook yielded an excited fan base that I hope will warmly receive this recipe, now that I’ve finally gotten around to publishing it.
It is ridiculously simple and off-the-charts delicious. While the grill is still hot this summer, consider beginning to prep the chicken in the oven, and finish it on the grill with the glaze. It is also a spectacular finish for roasted or grilled short ribs or spare ribs.
Make a lot of this; this simple and delicious recipe can absolutely be multiplied in direct proportions!
There isn’t likely to be leftovers. If there are, this cold chicken trumps any fried version out there, I promise.