This year for deck plants, we grew four chili plants. One plant was gypsy peppers, a very mild sweet pepper. Two were Bushel of Fire plants, with small Thai-red style chilies, which I made my sriracha sauce from. The last plant was the beautiful looking Black Pearl pepper plant. The leaves are a deep rich purple black, the flowers bloom purple, and the chilies themselves start out as black, then begin to lighten in a wide range of greens and oranges, ending in a dark red. These peppers are not only insanely hot (7 to 12 times hotter than a jalapeno), but come in copious numbers.
They’re a hard pepper to do something with. Being so small and round, by the time you cut the stem off, you don’t have much to work with. And it doesn’t take much to add a kick to any dish. I was chatting with my boss, who thankfully loves spicy food, trying to get ideas on what to do with my hundred chilies the size of a cranberry. She commented how she recently saw compound butters being made with chilies.
I decided to try my hand at making one with the black pearl peppers. I used a block of salted butter and added very finely minced peppers, some garlic, and oregano. I used the chili butter with some of my creamed corn and it added just a hint of heat. If you would like to make chili butter, just be cautious of how hot the pepper really is, so as to not add too many (or too little).
- 2 cups salted butter
- Finely minced chilies
- 1 heaping tablespoon dried oregano
- 2 heaping tablespoons crushed garlic
- When the butter is room temperature, mix all the ingredients.
- Line a mould of choice with parchment paper or roll into a log.
- Place in fridge for about an hour to set.
- Remove from mould and wrap in parchment paper and store in fridge or freezer.