Calabrian Hot Pepper Chili Paste is known to bring the heat and the flavor to any dish it is added to. Made by crushing Calabrian pepperoncini’s and mixing with Extra Virgin olive oil, this paste is used frequently in Southern Italy.
Calabria is located at the tip of the boot, when looking at a map of Italy. It is the southernmost region of Italy and known specifically for its hot Calabrian peppers. Known as the classic hot Italian pepper, the Calabrian Pepper is bright red, round in shape, and the size of a cherry.
The peppers are usually dried, stuffed, or packed in olive oil. When stuffing, tuna is the most popular choice. The combination of spicy pepper and salty tuna is delicious and fantastic as a Summer time snack. Calabrian Hot Pepper Chili Paste is a key ingredient in a lot of Southern Italian cooking. Add this Calabrian Pepper Paste to pasta, seafood dishes, or panini’s for a spicy Italian kick. One of our favorite recipes using Calabrian Hot Pepper Chili Paste is by Food Network superstar, Giada De Laurentiis. Check out her Calabrian Chile Pasta!
Recipe from Giada De Laurentiis
Calabrian Chile Pasta
1 Pound penne pasta
2 Teaspoons kosher salt
1 Cup grated pecorino
1 Pint cherry tomatoes, quartered
3 Tablespoons Calabrian Hot Pepper Paste
1/3 Cup chopped chives
1 Teaspoon grated lemon zest, from 1 lemon
1 Teaspoon lemon juice, from ½ lemon
1/3 Cup extra-virgin olive oil
In a 10-inch high-sided sauté pan, bring 1 inch of water (about 4 cups) to a boil over high heat. Add the penne and salt. Cook, stirring often, until the pasta is al dente, about 9 minutes; there should be a little water left in the pan.
Sprinkle the pecorino over the pasta; toss to coat. Add the tomatoes, chile paste, chives, lemon zest, lemon juice an olive oil, and toss.