May 2021 Challenge: Spicy!

Joined Jan 8, 2010
The chili source:

I used the chili bean paste with garlic, ginger powder and red wine vinegar to make a marinade for the left over beef neck

And they went on the weber smoky mountain

When they were almost done, I fried up some chili, garlic and green beans

Added the left over rice, some bumbu nasi goreng (I had an open pack, I don't normally use it for fried rice) and a couple of eggs

And had a meal :)
Joined Jan 8, 2010
I didn't finish all, so left over's again ;)
I was a bit underwhelmed with my fried rice, so decided to perk it up a bit with a freestyle sambal.
Fresh lemongrass, chili, garlic and maybe tomato

Started with punding the lemongrass as that takes a while. I think I did a decent job

Then added garlic , followed by some of the chili's. Tasted and it was quite hot (actually very hot) and could do with some acidity, so I added half a tomato

Heated up my left over fried rice and meat. Fried an egg, cut some cucumber and done again (chili paste to the side)
Joined Apr 25, 2011
butzy butzy You are absolutely killing this month!

I will say to everyone else, that you all can play too. We are mid way through May and There is still plenty of time to get an entry in.
Joined Apr 25, 2011
Birria Quesataco!
Birria seems to be in the spotlight now and I’ve seen quite a few places do the Quesataco, so I figured I’d give it a go.

I did a braised Beef short rib with onion, garlic, tomato, beer, guajillo peppers, cinnamon, cumin, jalapeño, black peppercorn, adobo, chicken stock and a few other things. Shredded beef and blended and strained sauce.
Dipped fresh corn tortillas in sauce, assembled tacos with beef, cheese, pickled onion, and cilantro.
Fried in pan to crisp. Served with sauce to dip and fresh lime. 4D7AB99E-96C1-48ED-9B3C-59F75F3A3A1C.jpeg D9E79592-B604-4206-BC95-698A2EC5E260.jpeg FD792F85-CC78-4A4D-BB36-A3D52989E970.jpeg 566A0A3D-1562-4BB6-9612-A11CB8B44739.jpeg
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Joined Jan 8, 2010
I'm back again :)

Noodle soup with nam prik pao
The chili bean paste entry and this one were inspired by a recent post by @french fries ;)
I actually looked at making nam prik pao from scratch, but I was missing just a couple ingredients too many. Maybe at a later time.

Nam prik pao (in the jar), onion, garlic, rehydrated mushrooms (shiitake and wood ear in the red bowl), tomato, kaffir lime leaves noodles, fish sauce and a little vinegar.
Not all of them made the picture though

I boiled water with nam prik pao (quite a hard boil) kaffir lime leaves, onions and garlic.

Added the sliced mushrooms, the soaking water and tomatoes and the noodles a minute or wat later

I broke an egg in the soup to make it a bit more of a substantional meal and put some fish sauce and vinegar to taste


I used instant noodles. I always throw the spice pack away immediately.
This time that was cheese flavour (how strange can you go......)
Joined Jan 8, 2010
Yeah, I'll just continue posting ;)
Waithing for enough green beans to make pad prik king...
Normally there are a lot of posts coming in the last week, hopefullybthat will happen again.
But I have been thinking that maybe people are "scared" to post and think they got to be expert cooks since it is called "challenge"?
Maybe we should call it "monthly theme" and attract more newcomers?
Joined Apr 25, 2011
Yeah, I'll just continue posting ;)
Waithing for enough green beans to make pad prik king...
Normally there are a lot of posts coming in the last week, hopefullybthat will happen again.
But I have been thinking that maybe people are "scared" to post and think they got to be expert cooks since it is called "challenge"?
Maybe we should call it "monthly theme" and attract more newcomers?
I don’t know why this site has slowed so much recently. I was gone for a while because I had some crazy things going on in my life. I didn’t even have much time to cook, let alone post about it. Lol.
However, I do love the monthly themes because it gives me a jumping off point on deciding what to make. I don’t participate to win (although it is a nice feeling to be selected as winner) but to be creative and see and share in others creativity.
The amount of knowledge I have gained by being a member of this site is immeasurable. I have a deep and profound respect for so many of the regular members. I have full confidence that if I have a question about anything culinary related. Someone here is more than happy to share the answer. And Bad advice never gets very far.
So, thanks everyone. And for the love of everything, Join the game and Post an entry. Lol
Joined Apr 25, 2011
I did a Jamaican Chicken Potato curry.

Did a sweat of onion, garlic, ginger, and lime zest in a coconut/peanut oil blend. Added Jamaican curry powder and bloomed in pan. Set aside and browned chicken. Added Yukon gold potatoes and returned onion to pot. Had boquet garnet with Bay leaf, Allspice, Scotch Bonnet Pepper, mustard seed, Sichaun peppercorn, cardamom pod, corriender seed, and whole cumin.
added chicken stock, coconut milk, lime juice, fish sauce.
simmered for a couple hours. Garnished with cilantro and served with white rice.
there were no leftovers. Spice level was on point.
Joined Jan 8, 2010
One that I actually didn't make for the challenge, but @Aldente 's thread made me want to have pizza!
Now a couple days earlier, I was pruning some basil out of the way (more light for the babies) and I found it hard to throw the leaves away sa I made those into fake pesto. Basil leaves, garlic, chili and olive oil.
This just had to become pizza "sauce", together with cheese and bacon....

And some of them with anchovies instead of bacon


Staff member
Joined Mar 29, 2002
Make a curry paste of onion, garlic, ginger, lemongrass (from a tube because that works for me), turmeric and ground dried chile--guajillo in this case. A few tablespoons of water to help it blend.

And after power is applied.

Brown off some chicken thigh, unpictured. Remove, add paste to remaining fat.

Add some coconut milk solids/fat. This is from two cans.
Cook until the fat separates out. It seems to be starting to at the edges but it really wants to stick to the pan so time to move on.
Add vegies: the last of my carrots, some potato, some cauliflower and return the chicken thigh. Add the rest of the coconut milk, rinse the can with water and add that too. There is some chicken base added as well at this point. Start the rice cooking now if you're doing it on the stove.


When it comes to boil, reduce heat to simmer, Taste. Tweak seasoning: fish sauce, brown sugar(out of palm sugar), some more curry powder--the chicken had some at the start--white pepper and a squirt of sriracha. Simmer until the vegies are tender, it should be just about when the rice is finished standing off heat. Some fresh lime at the end.

Sauce was a bit thin. Fished out some potato and cauliflower and some sauce-blitzed with a hand blender and mixed it back in to bring up the thickness a bit.

My kids served me so presentation is lacking.

Joined Apr 27, 2015
Wow, this is right in my wheelhouse. But what I'm working on takes more than a month to make.. it's kind of an ongoing evolutionary process. Every few years I create a small number of limited editions of hot sauce for our group. Everything is made in house. Starting with the peppers...
The sauce has traditionally been jalepeno and habernaro based, but I continually explore new types of chiles
I'm trying various hybrids like hot banana peppers and some special varieties sourced from the middle east. They're not ready to harvest yet though.

Once the peppers are ready for harvest, I do one of two different things... I will usually smoke them in a cold or warm smoker, then make them into a mash, or put them in a commercial dehydrator and make chili powder:

I also smoke and dehydrate other herbs and vegetables to add, like Culantro, tomatoes, etc.

I then combine the chili powder with the mash and allow it to age. I don't have traditional oak barrels but I do the next best thing. I take an oak barrel stave and char it on all sides and insert it into a mason jar and use that for aging..

I will create a nice size batch of the mash and depending upon how soon I'll be making the sauce I'll keep it either at room temp or in the fridge.


After mash has aged appropriately and slightly fermented I begin the process of refining it into a hot sauce with the basic ingredients in the mash, vinegar, spices, xanthan gum as a binder, and other things, and then put them into bottles. They usually sell out fast, and older versions tend to age and get better with time..

I always use some of the previous batch mash for the next batch.
Joined Nov 5, 2007
Oddly I haven't been involved much in this challenge. And I really like spicy stuff.


Deep fried shrimp with a SPICY Buffalo garlic sauce.


Tuna tataki drizzled with chle infused ponsu, hot togarashi on the rice.


Pork with two peppers: sweet shishito and HOT red arbols.

I may do a Szechuan chicken and red pepper dish when I get home from work tomorrow morning. So maybe I'll actually get one entry in this month.



Staff member
Joined Mar 29, 2002
I'm out of town through the end of the month. So good luck everyone.
Joined Jan 8, 2010
Time for some lemongrass chicken

Chili (I didn't use all ;) ), garlic and lemongrass

I started with slicing and pounding lemongrass. That's always quite a job!
Then added garlic

and the chili's after that

Then turmeric and ginger. Both ground, as my fresh stuff is still too young to harvest.
Then lime juice and fish sauce to make it into a paste.

I put some pieces of lime and the left over lemongrass in the cavity and a little of the paste.
Most of the paste got put under the skin. Always a bit of a tricky job, but I managed.

Meanwhile: i boiled up the intestines with some rice for my boys

The chicken went on the smoker and came out pretty ok. Just a tad of damage of the skin when taking it off the grid. But cooked through and still juicy

My plate:
(i had a full veg lunch :) )
Joined Apr 25, 2011
butzy butzy That chicken makes me want to buy a plane ticket to Zambia! Thank you for all your lovely entries this month. Your style and freshness of ingredients used is unparalleled on this site.

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