This cauliflower is sweet, tangy, and fiery and that’s why it’s so hard to stop eating. It’s great over rice as a meal, but you could a so consider set- ting out a bowl of the cauliflower as a serve-yourself appetizer. For the best-textured cauliflower, cut your florets into 1½-inch piece . If they’re larger, they remain a little firm after frying and are harder to eat.
Culinary Vegetable Institute Executive Chef Jamie Simpson first tasted a version of the Thai sauce nam prik pao while cooking at the Charleston Place Hotel (now Belmond Charleston Place). A fellow chef-friend, who once worked at Charleston’s beloved Thai restaurant, Basil, made the sauce for staff meal, and they ate it on room-service chicken fingers. Since then, the balance of sweetness, fieriness, and delicious pungency has haunted Jamie. He tried to replicate it for years but wasn’t happy
with the results until the CVI grew the right peppers. This is one of our pantry staples brought out frequently for staff meals. Toast, vegetables, rice, hamburgers—you name it; this hot chile jam will elevate it. Note: The Thai chiles are HOT, so it’s important you wear gloves when seeding them. Also, this recipe makes a lot of jam, but it lasts indefinitely in the fridge. Or you can give a few jars away as gifts.