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Posted September 17, 2005 by Nick Lindauer in Makers
 
 

The Intermediate Eater: Some like 'em not so hot


By JOHN OWEN
SPECIAL TO THE POST-INTELLIGENCER

Blair Lazar is possessed of a weird sense of humor. He is the kind of guy who invites you to “taste this,” and when you do, you are temporarily rendered mute and blind. He is president of the “If It Doesn’t Hurt It Isn’t Hot Enough Society.” Lazar produces and peddles sauces, powders and snacks with names like Satan’s Blood and Death Rain Nitro Powder.

He recently trumpeted a new formula, 16 Million Reserve, which he claims is pure capsaicin, the hottest sauce possible. It is locked in a crystal flask, sealed with wax and imprinted with a tiny skull. Nobody can taste it unless they sign a waiver absolving Lazar of any liability. It is said to be 8,000 times hotter than Tabasco sauce.

Why did he create a product that may not kill you, but would make you wish it had? Here’s a better question: Why would anybody buy 16 Million Reserve? I might, if my grocer stocked it.

I’ll admit I do like hot food and am involved in a continual struggle with Alice the Artist on this issue. She will accept a bit of a bite in her food these days, if I show some uncharacteristic restraint in the preparation of entrees like these:

PEPPERED BREASTS
SERVES 4

* 4 chicken breast halves
* 1/2 teaspoon salt
* Coarse ground pepper
* 2 tablespoons butter
* 2 chopped green onions, including tops
* Juice of 1/2 lime or lemon
* 2 tablespoons brandy
* 3 tablespoons chopped parsley
* 1 generous tablespoon Dijon mustard
* 1/2 cup chicken broth

Remove bones and skin from breasts. Place the breasts between sheets of wax paper and whack with a rolling pin until flattened.

Sprinkle the breasts with salt, then grind coarse pepper over both sides, to your taste. (I like a lot of pepper.)

Saute the breasts in a buttered pan not more than 4 minutes per side, over a medium-hot fire. Remove to a warm oven.

To the pan add the green onions, lime or lemon juice, brandy (I used brandy-based Grand Marnier liqueur) the parsley and mustard. Cook 15 seconds. Stir in the chicken broth slowly and stop stirring when the sauce thickens.

Pour the sauce over the breasts and serve, maybe with wild rice on the side.

TANDOORI CHICKEN BREASTS
SERVES 6

* 1 8-ounce container plain yogurt
* 1/2 small onion, chopped
* 1 tablespoon paprika
* 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
* 1 tablespoon minced, peeled ginger root
* 1 teaspoon ground cumin
* 1 teaspoon ground coriander
* 1/4 teaspoon salt
* 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (or more)
* Pinch of ground cloves
* 6 chicken breast halves, skinned (about 3 pounds)

Dump all the ingredients except the chicken in a blender and lean on the button until you have a smooth sauce.

Place the breasts in a large, zipper-lock bag. Add the tandoori sauce and marinate at least 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Place chicken on a rack in a medium roasting pan. Spoon half of the marinade over the chicken and roast, basting a couple of times with the leftover marinade, for 30 minutes or until juices run clear when a breast is pierced with a serving fork. (If the chicken says “Ouch!” it’s not done.)

John Owen writes “The Intermediate Eater” weekly. Contact him by e-mail at ieater@verizon.net.

The recipes sound good, but there’s one glaring error in the article. Blair doesn’t produce Satan’s Blood! Satan’s Blood is manufactured by Sauce Crafters, a company out of Florida.


Nick Lindauer

 
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