Lake Oswego's Kelly Calabria has as much fun marketing her Kelly's Habanero Pepper Jelly as we have eating it.
Her sweet spicy jelly has been on grocery shelves for less than two years and it continues to gain national exposure. Kelly's Habanero Pepper Jelly recently won first prize in the 2012 National Scovie Awards, the world's largest spicy foods competition. And, perhaps even more impressive to Portlandia fans, Voodoo Doughnuts each Thursday features a doughnut filled with Kelly's Jelly - 'Sweet. Spice. And everything nice,' as Calabria says on her website.
So what is next for the caliente kitchen whiz kid? Calabria believes there are endless possibilities for using her habanero jelly and what better way to bring out the best than with a food challenge?
She asked local chefs Patrick Warner from Scratch, Alan Doty and Stephan Jaynen from Riccardo's, Kyra Bussanich of Crave Bake Shop, Jenã Russell of Tucci Restaurant, Thu Ha of fu'Asian and Ellen Hatzi of The Olive and the Grape to come up with recipes using the habanero jelly. She encouraged them to be creative - use it in cocktails, appetizers, desserts or main dishes.
'We visited the chefs (two Fridays ago) to take pictures of their dish and collect recipes. You would not believe the amount of creativity and passion they put into this challenge,' she said. 'The next step is posting the recipes and photos online for judging.'
You, dear eaters, are the judges and I have to warn you, it's not going to be an easy task. The chefs really pulled out all the stops. Here is a list of their offerings:
Crave Bake Shop: hyperlink "http://kellysjelly.com/kellys-jelly-spicy-peach-bellini-cupcakes-crave-bake-shop/" Kelly's Jelly Spicy Peach Bellini Cupcakes - Crave Bake Shop (Prosecco Peach Cake filled with Kelly's Jelly Peach Habenero Compote, topped with Peach Prosecco Mascarpone Cream)
fu'Asian: Kelly's Jelly Angry Dragon Roll
The Olive and the Grape: Panko Crusted Goat Cheese Medallions stuffed with Kelly's Habanero Jelly, Pulled Pork Slider and Sweet Ricotta Fritters with Spicy Glaze
Riccardo's Ristorante: Kelly's Jelly Habanero Scallops
Scratch: Jerked Chicken Skewers with Pineapple Chutney and Black Bean Salad.
Tucci: Kelly's Jelly Bruscetta with Grilled Asparagus, Basil, Goat Cheese and Proscuitto
To vote, search on Facebook for Kelly's Jelly page. There you can view pictures of the dishes and read the recipes. Select your favorite and vote. You can only vote once and the winner will be announced on May 7.
To try making the recipes yourself purchase Kelly's Jelly at Palisades Market. Look for the specially designed labels indicating your purchase includes a donation to the Lake Oswego School Foundation.
I pulled a couple of the contender recipes off the Kelly's Jelly Facebook page. They all sound great and look tantalizing, so pick up a few jars of the habanero jelly to start experimenting.
Bon appetite! Eat something wonderful!
Riccardos's Ristorante Kelly's Jelly Habanero Scallops
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
1 bunch cilantro
For the glaze:
2 oz Kelly's Jellys Habanero jelly
1 oz lime juice
3 oz tequila
For the salad dressing:
3 oz Kelly's Jellys Habanero jelly
5 oz lime juice
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
Halve, stone and slice the mangos and avocados lengthwise.
Using a spoon, gently remove the slices from the skin. Reserve 4 slices of each for garnishing the plates. Medium dice the rest of the mango and avocado.
Whisk ingredients for the dressing in a small bowl. Salt and pepper to taste.
In a medium bowl, add mango, avocado and 1 tablespoon of finely chopped cilantro, toss with half of the dressing. Adjust seasoning with salt and pepper.
In a small sauce pan, add ingredients for glaze and reduce until slightly thick. Adjust with a tablespoon of water if nessesary.
Lightly salt and pepper the scallops. In a large skillet, sear the scallops until brown on both sides and just cooked through.
On each plate, make two small mounds of the salad; top with a scallop and drizzle with the glaze. Place one slice of avocado and mango on each plate and add a tablespoon or two of dressing over the slices.
Garnish with a sprig of cilantro and enjoy.
Chef Stefan and Chef Allen, Riccardo's Ristorante
Panko Crusted Goat Cheese Medallions stuffed with Kelly's Habanero Jelly
11 ounce log of fresh goat cheese
1/3 cup flour
1 egg, beaten
¾ cup panko crumbs
3 to 4 tablespoons olive oil
Kelly's Habanero Pepper Jelly
Garlic crostini or crackers
In small dish, combine panko with a pinch of salt
Slice the goat cheese log into 8 rounds with unwaxed dental floss. Place the flour, egg and panko into three separate shallow dishes
Coat the goat cheese slices in flour, dip in the beaten egg, then coat with panko. Press the cheese rounds lightly into the crumbs mixture to make sure that they adhere well and chill to set.
Slice crusted medallions in half with unwaxed dental floss and top one half with a small dollop of Kelly's Habanero Pepper Jelly. Press both halves of medallions together.
In sauté pan, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the cheese rounds in a single layer and fry until golden brown on the first side, about 2 minutes. Being very careful not the break the crust. Turn the rounds over and fry for another 2 minutes
Top with a dollop of Kelly's Habanero Pepper Jelly. Serve with garlic crostini or crackers.
Chef Ellen Hatzi of The Olive and the Grape