Jalapeno peppers add a welcome sizzle to any number of dishes.
Sliced and pickled, they enliven tacos and nachos. They also add wonderful heat to soups, stews, stir-fries and sauces. They’re versatile, and luckily you can still find them in plenty at farmers markets.
I like to incorporate jalapenos into a jelly when I’m looking for a spicy-sweet flavor. The burn on the tongue is tempered a bit by the addition of sweet bell peppers, vinegar and sugar, but it is still wonderfully piquant. The jelly will keep for weeks in your refrigerator.
Here, the jelly is thinned with a little balsamic vinegar to create a zesty glaze for pork tenderloin. It also could be brushed on salmon, steaks or chicken wings, spooned on top of burgers or mixed with cream cheese for a cracker dip.
For a longer cupboard/shelf storage, process the cooked jelly in a boiling water bath for 10 minutes.
JALAPENO-GLAZED PORK ROAST
For jalapeno jelly
1 cup seeded and finely chopped red pepper
1 cup seeded and finely chopped green pepper
2 cups seeded and finely chopped jalapeno peppers
1 cup apple cider vinegar
1 (1.75-ounce) dry fruit pectin
Dab of butter or margarine
5 cups sugar
For pork roast
1 tablespoon ancho or regular chili powder
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2-or 2-pound pork tenderloin
1/3 cup jalapeno pepper jelly
1 1/2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
Make jelly: Place peppers in large saucepan or Dutch oven. Add vinegar, then stir in pectin until well combined.
Add butter or margarine to reduce foaming. Turn heat to high, and bring mixture to rolling boil that doesn’t stop bubbling when stirred. Slowly stir in sugar, mixing to combine. Cook, stirring often, until sugar is completely melted and pepper mixture returns to a full rolling boil, about 10 minutes. Boil for 1 minute, stirring constantly, then remove from heat and ladle into clean jars. Jelly will set as it cools.
Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
Whisk chili powder, black pepper, cinnamon, cumin and salt together in a small bowl. Using your fingers, rub spice mixture onto all sides of pork tenderloin. Place tenderloin in a shallow roasting pan or jelly roll pan.
Roast tenderloin in the preheated oven until no longer pink in the center, about 30 minutes. (An instant-read thermometer inserted into the center should read 150 degrees.)
Stir pepper jelly and balsamic vinegar together in a small saucepan and cook over low heat until jelly is completely melted, 1 to 2 minutes. Brush pepper jelly mixture over pork tenderloin and continue to bake tenderloin until jelly coating is hot, about 5 minutes more.
Let pork rest for 5 minutes before slicing. Serve with roasted potatoes and a green salad.