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Hot and spicy desserts

I predict 2007 will be a hot, spicy year for desserts.

My typical dining scenario has been like this. I would be somewhat dazzled by the appetizers, somewhat pleased by the main courses, but somewhat disappointed by the desserts. Not because they are bad, but because they are predictable. Predictably sweet, too. Sweet is wonderful, but a dessert can be infinitely more complex. Tart(it can be uninteresting if it's too cleanly tart - as in some fruit sorbets), bitter, peppery.

My favorite home dessert of the moment -so easy to make- is granny smith or Fuji (peaches are better, but they are off-season)sauteed with fruit vinegar and ground white or pink peppercorns. (a scoop of creme fraiche ice cream with it would be nice)

Have you seen/made a great spicy dessert lately?

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  1. I have been more obsessed that usual with spicy things. Maybe need the endorphins to fight winter blues. Anyway I recently made a sichuan and chili pepper infused oil... and drizzled it on a brownie. Don't knock it until you try it. Chocolate and chili were born to be together.

    1 Reply
    1. re: lyn

      Yes! I totally dig the chilli and chocolate thing, in brownies, rich cakes, etc. I had such from local restaurants/bakeries, but I never know how much to put in the mix, and haven't yet tried. Sometimes I add a little cayenne/chilli powder/cinnamon to really good quality chocolate sauce for ice cream (or caramel sauce too for that matter). Desserts with the hot against the cold are divine.

    2. I made some pumpkin custard last month and foolishly thought it would be interesting to add one hot chili to the spice mixture I was grinding.

      Mistake. Most of the custards went in the trash. But I can't say I won't experiment.

      To be honest, I overspiced the custard in general and that's probably why I tossed it, but I don't think I'd repeat the chili.

      1. I've been working on a box of hot chocolate mix with chili and cinnamon (like a spicy Ibarra) - I'll bet that would be great in all kinds of stuff.

        1. I love brownies with chopped candied ginger and a dash (or a few dashes) of cayenne pepper.

          I've also taken to drinking my hot chocolate with a dash of cayenne lately. It's not enough to change the flavor, but it keeps my insides warm on cold nights.

          1. I once had a caramelized banana 'split' with jalapeno chocolate ice cream at Spanish Kitchen in LA. The ice cream was spicy hot in flavor, but cold and sweet, too. Interesting combo!

            1. Wallse, a Austrian-inspired restaurant in Manhattan does this great apple sorbet dessert with horseradish. It is a great palate cleanser.

              1. one of my favorite things is green mango slices dipped in thai peppers, fish sauce, lime juic and garlic...

                i also saw an episode of take home chef that featured a dessert with mango slices drizzled with a spicy chimichurri sauce. looked yummy.

                1. My wife came up with a recipe for a habanero-lime cheesecake. Wonderful, but it can get a bit hot!

                  Homemade chocolate/ancho chile ice cream is good too.

                  1. Chili and pineapple are made for each other. It's a very classic combination (to the extent that you'll even find canned pineapples spiked with chillli).

                    4 Replies
                    1. re: limster

                      That reminds me of all the fruit carts in the Mexican neighborhoods that offer bags of various sliced fruits that they add fresh lime juice, chile and salt to. The combination of the cool, wet, sweet, sour, hot sensations is fabulous.

                      1. re: Ruth Lafler

                        It has become my new habit to sprinkle a little salt on oranges and melons, etc. the way I used to for papaya. Salt seems to actually heighten the sweetness.

                        1. re: grocerytrekker

                          My friend from North Carolina taught me this trick. Salt enhances melons. Never tried other fruits.

                          1. re: grocerytrekker

                            My mom always does the same for under-sweet fruit like pomelos, mangoes, etc. I don't know if it made it sweeter, but it definitely made me like it for just being salty!

                      2. I make a mean apple/green chili bread pudding.

                        I also like putting a little New Mexican chili powder into my chocolate pudding.

                        Of course a mango and chili powder is always good.

                        I like it hot!

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: mar52

                          Any chance you might share this bread pudding recipe? It sounds marvelous! Thanks.

                        2. How about green papaya and chile? I had a Cambodian friend who would bring these to work. I love this combination.

                          1. my sister has sprinkled cantelope with pepper since we were little kids, I never tried it. She adores the stuff.

                            1. Have you heard of Toad Sweat hot dessert sauces? they're sweet and spicy. There's vanilla, chocolate, lime, etc., all enhanced with habanero.

                              my favorite flavor from our local popsicle stand is mango with chile; they also do a very nice black pepper cream.

                              (pepper is my secret ingredient in so many desserts--gives such a nice warmth, and no one can identify it...)

                              1. I had bittersweet chocolate, ancho chile and Amarena cherry bread pudding with vanilla anglaise on my restaurant menu.

                                Also, dulce de leche brulee with cinnamon and red chile-dusted mini churros was a regular special.