Chilies are widely-used in many Asian
cuisine, especially that of Southeast Asia. If moderate flavoring is
needed, just rinse the chili and combine it with the dish when
simmering, then lift out and dispose of the chili prior to serving.
However , if you would like the real hot quality of the food and choose
to use the chilies seeded and cut as the Asians do, then equip yourself
with disposable plastic or well fitting rubber gloves. Loose, awkward
gloves tend to be hard to work in.
Remove stalk of chili and create a slit to clear out the seeds, scraping
them away using the tip of a small sharpened knife; or cut the chili in
two lengthways and take out the central membrane plus the seeds. The
seeds are often the hottest part within the chili. It you intend to cook
some of the scorching hot sambals, the chilies are used with seeds and
all. Usually ground or even pureed using a food processor.
If you handle (cut or chop) chilies without using a gloves, immediately
after completing this task, rinse both hands thoroughly with soap and
warm water. Chilies could be so hot that even 2 or 3 good washing could
not prevent the tingling discomfort, which could last for hours. Should
this happen, make sure to keep your hands effectively away from your
eyes, mouth or the location where the skin is particularly sensitive -
and in particular, don't touch small children.
Dried chilies : There are big and small dried chilies; those considered
necessary in most of the following dishes are the big type. If frying
them as an accompaniment to a meal, use them whole, dropping them
directly into hot cooking oil. If they are being soaked and ground as
part of the spicing for a sambal, sauce or curry, first of all remove or
snip away the stalk end and shake the chili in order that the seeds drop
out. They are safe enough to manage until they've been soaked and
ground, however , if you handle them after this has been done, make sure
to wash your hands immediately with water and soap. Dried chilies, even
though they provide lots of heat and flavor, don't have as much impact
on the skin as fresh chilies with the volatile oils.