Chiles and Tomatoes interbreeding?

system Chile Gardening Leave a Comment

Hi Dave,Years ago I grew tomatoes and peppers in the same garden, side by side. One of the tomato plants’ fruit seemed to acquire all of the properties of the bell pepper–hollow inside, with the seed cluster in the middle, towards the top–but it was still a tomato. I thought it was just a fluke, so I took the seeds …

Ugandan Groundnut Sauce

Dave DeWitt Recipes Leave a Comment

Variations on this hot sauce appear all over Africa, with the key ingredint being peanuts in any form. Here, peanut butter works well–either smooth or crunchy.  Its most common usage is to spread over fried chicken or fish or serve it over rice.


  • 1/2 pound dried fish, such as salt cod, coarsley chopped
  • 4 1/2 cups water
  • 2 onions, chopped
  • 2 teaspoons peanut oil
  • 4 tomatoes, chopped
  • 2 teaspoons cayenne powder
  • 1 teaspoon Malawi Curry Powder
  • 1 cup peanut butter
  • Salt to taste


Soak the dried fish in 2 cups of water until it becomes soft.  Drain and pat dry.  In a large skillet, fry the onions in the oil until brown, about 5 minutes.  Add the fish, curry cayenne, remaining water, peanut butter, and salt.  Simmer, uncovered, for 45 minutes, or until the sauce thickens to the desired consistency.

Nma Jim Jeaw Sauce

Dave DeWitt Recipes Leave a Comment

As this is always a homemade concoction, recipes vary for both ingredients and amounts. The rule-of-thumb is “to taste.” A key element that all agree on is the difficult-to-make roasted, powdered rice which I‘ve yet to find on U.S. market shelves. To make it, sauté rice in lime juice until browned but still with a trace of moisture then grind into a medium powder. This condiment is used to spice up any dish. Try it over rice pilaf.


  • 1 ½ tablespoons ground, roasted rice

  • 1 ½ tablespoons chile powder

  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice

  • 1 tablespoon tamarind sauce

  • ½ tablespoon sugar (palm sugar is best)

  • 1 shallot, peeled and sliced

  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce

  • 2 tablespoons fish sauce

  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped

  • 1 cilantro root, minced (optional)

  • 1/4 cup water or more if needed


In a bowl, combine all ingredients and mix thoroughly. Transfer to a blender and puree. Return the sauce to the bowl and place it in the regfrigerator for at least 3 hourse for the flavors to blend and the rice to soften. Garnish with minced parsley, mint, and spring onion.

Where to Order Peri-Peri

system Industry Issues Leave a Comment

Q: Hi Dave,I am trying to locate the Peri-Peri pepper or, as sometimes known, the Bird’s Eye chile pepper. Thank you, Rachel A: Hello Rachael:"Peri-Peri" is the Swahili generic term for peppers, and they can be anything.  The Bird’s Eye is a small, erect-podded African chile that is hard to find commercially in the U.S.  There’s not much flavor to them, …

The Mongols are Coming!

Sharon Hudgins Asia Leave a Comment

Story and Photos by Sharon Hudgins Actually they’re already here. Mongol cuisine—or dishes dubbed “Mongolian”—has taken the world by storm, like a horde of horse-mounted warriors galloping out of Central Asia on a global raiding party. Mongolian barbecue. Mongolian hot pot. Jingisukan (I’ll bet you can figure that one out). From hole-in-the-wall mom-and-pop joints to look-alike chain restaurants to elegant …