Friday, July 26, 2013

Ema Datshi *The Chili Cheese Culinary*

Ema Datshi

Ema Datshi is among the most famous dishes in Bhutanese cuisine, recognized as a national dish of Bhutan. It is made from chili peppers and cheese; "ema" means "chili" and "datshi" means "cheese" in the Dzongkha language of Bhutan. Different varieties of chilies may be used: green chili, red chili, and/or white chili, which may be dried or fresh. The chilies are called "Sha ema"  *Chili from the East* 
The cheese in Ema Datse is home-made from the milk of cows or yaks. In the process, the fat is removed from the milk to make butter, and the remaining milk without fat is used to make the cheese. After the cheese is made, a watery milk is left over, which is used as a soup that can be taken with rice. No part of the milk is wasted. Bhutan‘s cuisine can best be described in one word ‘hot’The Bhutanese passion for chilli is a source of national pride. The national dish, ema datshi, a dish of ema (chilli) cooked in datshi(cheese), is the undisputed favourite for all Bhutanese and a growing number of foreigners. It accompanies every traditional meal, sometimes being the only dish, eaten with steamed rice, the staple.
Bhutanese chillies are larger and generally milder than the small, sharp chillies found in many Asian markets. In fact the Bhutanese consider the chilli a vegetable, not a spice, and is cooked in bulk. Vegetables and meat are also cooked with chilli and cheese, like kewa (potato) datshi which is a favourite, especially among children, and shamu (mushroom) datshi. Bhutanese cooking is simple. 

 Ingredients for Ema datshi (chilli and cheese)
½ lb. jalapeno peppers, or your choice of pepper (Red/Green/White)
½ lb. blue cheese, or cheese of your choice (best with Local Cheese)
2 TB organic canola oil
2 TB butter
2 tomatoes, cut in wedges, or 1 pint of cherry tomatoes
1 bunch fresh cilantro, approx 12/ cup, chopped
1 tsp ground coriander
salt to taste

Wash and split each pepper lengthwise and remove seeds and white membrane, setting aside four or five whole jalapenos. Be careful to wash you hands or wear gloves so as not to spread the hot capsicum on your skin or around the kitchen. Split the remaining peppers and leave the seeds in tact. Add oil to the skillet until it glistens in the pan, then toss in the peppers, and cook on medium heat for about 10 minutes, or until the peppers are tender. Add tomatoes and ground coriander and cook for a few more minutes. Add the blue cheese in small crumbles, while gently stirring. Cover with a lid and let simmer on low for three to five minutes, or until the cheese is evenly melted and the texture is consistent. Turn heat to low and add chopped cilantro, and butter, in two or three pats replace lid until the fresh herbs wilt and the butter melts, just about one minute. Salt to taste.
*if you are sensitive to hot then De-Seed the Chili *

No comments:

Post a Comment