Like many of us, I could spend hours perusing cookbooks, always on the hunt for something new and intriguing to try my hand at. So when I saw this recipe in “Green & Black’s Chocolate Recipes”, by Caroline Jeremy, I did a double-take! What the heck? Chilis filled with chocolate and then dipped in chocolate? Oh, and the best part? The chilis are marinated in vodka! Well, I just knew that I had to make them for a special occasion; and what better holiday, than Valentine’s Day. I will tell you that this recipe has that “wow” factor. If you really want to impress your sweetheart, whip up a batch of these!
I learned a few things as I made these chocolates, and I am happy to share that info with you today. First, the hardest part of this recipe is getting the seeds and membranes out of the chilis without cracking them open. I used the scoop-end of a small seafood fork to accomplish this task. Just be patient and they will all come out eventually. Try using larger chilis. I used smaller ones on my first attempt, and they were much more time consuming! Secondly, if you don’t want to get your valentine too tipsy, don’t marinate the chilis for much longer than the recommended time. I placed my chilis in the vodka and then got busy, so they marinated for several days before I got to fill them! Phew, one bite and I was feeling it, and the flavour of raw alcohol was very strong. If you and your valentine don’t ingest alcohol, just leave it out altogether. Thirdly, if you don’t like really hot chilis, it is possible to remove some of the heat by blanching the de-seeded chilis or by boiling them for 2 minutes. I just learned this trick and it works really well. Next, this recipe is so flexible. You can change the flavour altogether by using a flavoured chocolate to fill or dip the chilis. Also, you don’t have to use vodka. Try some tequila or a liqueur that you like. And lastly, don’t throw away the vodka marinade! You can use this to make a wicked, chili martini or another cocktail that calls for a bit of kick!
I am excited to be bringing a big batch of my chocolate filled chilils over to the gang at Fiesta Friday! I know that many of them love chocolate, so I think these will be super popular! Come join us! Angie, of The Novice Gardener, hosts our virtual blog party every Friday. Happy Valentine’s Day everyone!
Chocolate Filled Vodka Chili Chocolates
12 red or green chili peppers (or a combination), stalks on
1 ½ cups vodka
4 ounces good quality white chocolate for stuffing (this may vary according to the size of your chilis)
4 ounces good quality dark chocolate for dipping
Black pepper, freshly ground
Cover a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Wash the chilis. Cut a small slit in the side of each so you can remove the inner membrane and the seeds. (Use the scoop-end of a small seafood fork)
Place the chilis in a medium glass bowl and cover with the vodka. Cover with plastic wrap and allow to marinate for at least 12 hours.
To make the filling, melt the white chocolate in the top of a double boiler. Place the melted chocolate in a pastry bag, fitted with a small nozzle.
Remove the chilis from the vodka and shake gently to remove the excess vodka.
Fill each of the chilis with the white chocolate and gently place on the prepared baking sheet. Pop the baking sheet into the freezer until ready to serve.
Sift the confectioner’s sugar over your serving plate and top with a couple of good grinds of fresh black pepper.
Melt the dark chocolate in the same manner as the white and pour into a glass jar. Remove the filled chils from the freezer. Dip each of the chilis into the dark chocolate and place them directly onto the serving platter to set before serving. Do this 1/2 hour or so before serving to allow the chills to thaw and the exterior chocolate to set.
I used a seafood fork to remove the seeds and membranes from the chilis.
It is possible to blanch the de-seeded chilis to soften their flavor, or boil them for 2 minutes to remove most of their heat. I tried this and it works really well.
You don’t have to use vodka. Try some tequila for a little more kick. Or the next time I make these, I will try marinating the chilis in some White Chocolate Liqueur.