Spicy Pepper and Sweet Pepper Relish (2 Recipes)

About: Proud father of 2 girls (2.5 and 1.5 years old as of May 2018). Enjoy writing, making things, and hoarding cats.

This instructable contains 2 different (but similar) recipes to make pepper relish. The first version uses hot peppers for a spicy addition to your meal. The second uses sweet peppers and has no heat, so it is appropriate for children and those who don't like hot dishes.

Step 1: Ingredients

For the spicy relish we have just 4 ingredients:

  1. Jalapeno Peppers
  2. Serrano Peppers
  3. Choice of fat (I used butter)
  4. Blackstrap Molasses

For the sweet relish we will need:

  1. Orange Bell Pepper
  2. Red Bell Pepper
  3. Yellow Bell Pepper
  4. Green Bell Pepper*
  5. Choice of fat (I used coconut oil, but prefer butter)

* I used a Poblano pepper for this instructable. The end result isn't much different, but I find the relish is better if you use all Bell peppers. My 2 year old loves Poblano peppers and the slight difference in taste didn't warrant an hour of screaming.

Step 2: Information About Hot Peppers

Hot peppers have their heat measured on the "Scoville Scale". This scale uses "Scoville Units" (SU) to measure the relative heat between varieties of pepper. The scale starts at 0 (no heat) and goes up into the millions (you probably don't want to eat that).

Different regions have different availability of peppers in the market, though everywhere I have been in the U.S. has had jalapenos. Jalapeno and serrano peppers have a very similar flavor, so it is easy to adjust the ratio between them to increase or decrease the heat, while leaving the flavor the same. Having said that, this recipe is very forgiving, and you can easily substitute peppers to adjust the heat or the flavor. Green bell peppers and poblanos can be used to reduce the heat. If you want it hotter you probably already know what chili is available in your area.

A jalapeno pepper has between 2,500 and 8,000 SU
A serrano pepper has between 10,000 and 23,000 SU, so it is roughly 3 times hotter.

If your local market has different varieties of peppers you can look them up to see how hot they are in SU and be better informed on if you want to use them, and the quantities you might use.

You can also de-seed/de-vein and the peppers to make them less fiery. When you slice a pepper in half there is a lot of white/light colored membrane encasing the seeds, and veins of it running on the inside of the pepper. This contains much of the capsaicin (chemical that makes peppers burn).

***Be careful handling hot peppers ***

When you handle hot peppers the oil that contains capsaicin gets on your skin. For milder peppers (like jalapenos) this may not bother you at all, but as you utilize hotter and hotter peppers it can lead to unpleasant situations for you* AND for others. If you have disposable gloves I would recommend wearing them when you are handling the peppers. If not, be sure to wash your hands with dish detergent to help remove the oils from your skin. I also rub my eyes and inside my nose before I will touch my children. If you still have any capsaicin on your skin touching your eyes and nose will definitely let you know.

* One time after processing some habanero peppers (100,000 to 350,000 SU) I did not wash my hands very well. Later I inadvertently touched my eyes, my cheeks and the outside of my nose. The burning was intense, and I ended up sitting with my face in a bowl of milk (casein binds to the oil and helps wash it away) for thirty minutes to help alleviate it. I have read stories of people harvesting super-hot peppers (1,000,000+ SU) having their hands burn for DAYS.

Step 3: Spicy Pepper Relish

I like to use an equal number of jalapeno to serrano peppers, but as mentioned you can modify it as needed.If you want to omit the serrano peppers I would use 8 jalapenos total.

For this recipe I used:

  • 6 Jalapeno peppers
  • 6 Serrano peppers
  • About 2.5 tablespoons of blackstrap molasses (I just eyeball it, otherwise it seems like more molasses is on the spoon than in the pot).
  • 4 ounces of butter* or your choice of fat**

* As seen in the pictures I used 8 ounces of butter, but 4 is all you need to make the relish. My wife likes to strain off the extra and have hot pepper infused butter for other dishes she makes.

Simply dice all of the peppers, and then throw all of the ingredients in your slow cooker (I used a 2 quart for this small batch).

Then you have 2 options to cook it:

  • Low setting - 11 hours (preferred method)
  • High setting - 7 hours (according to conversion table on this site. I have only used the low setting.)

This relish is best served warm, but it can be put in the refrigerator for a few days.

** If you use a fat that is not liquid at room temperature the relish will solidify if you let it cool or put it in the fridge. If this happens it is still fine to eat, but you will need to rewarm it prior to serving. Avocado oil is my preferred liquid fat, but I think butter is the best.

Step 4: Sweet Pepper Relish

This recipe uses the following:

  • 1 red bell pepper.
  • 1 yellow bell pepper
  • 1 orange bell pepper
  • 1 green bell pepper (or poblano)
  • 1 medium onion
  • 3 tablespoons of coconut oil or your choice of fat*

Remove the seeds, veins and stems from the peppers and dice them. Remove the skin and ends from the onion and dice it as well. Then throw all of the ingredients into your slow cooker (I used a 2 quart for this batch).

Then you have 2 options to cook it:

  • Low setting - 11 hours (preferred method)
  • High setting - 7 hours (according to the conversion table on this site. I have only used the low setting).

This relish is best served warm, but it can be put in the refrigerator for a few days. I also recommend sprinkling salt on the top of it.

* If you use a fat that is not liquid at room temperature the relish will solidify if you let it cool or put it in the fridge. If this happens it is still fine to eat, but you will need to rewarm it prior to serving. Avocado oil is my preferred liquid fat, but I think butter is the best.

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    2 Discussions

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    brahmusEveyMac

    Reply 6 months ago

    Thank you! I hope you enjoy it! My wife tells me the hot relish is good, but hasn't let me eat any so I can't verify...