Slideshow: 34 Hot and Spicy Recipes for Summer

Lobster Ceviche
Lobster Ceviche

If you want to go extra fancy, you can serve your ceviche in your carefully cleaned out lobster shell.

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[Photograph: J. Kenji López-Alt]

Thai Pomelo and Shrimp Salad
Thai Pomelo and Shrimp Salad

This miang, which is sort of a one-bite salad, pairs poached shrimp and sweet, tart pomelo and is tossed in a spicy chili dressing.

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[Photograph: Leela Punyaratabandhu]

Hot Pepper Relish
Hot Pepper Relish

This is a spicy mix of green and red hot peppers that'll brighten up your summer dogs.

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[Photograph: Joshua Bousel]

Okra-Fried Jalapeños
Okra-Fried Jalapeños

So you've heard of chicken-fried steak, but what about okra-fried jalapeños? Battered jalapenos combine the same pickled sourness of a fried pickle with the spiciness of the pepper—and it's all encased in a crispy coating, then dipped into a cooling horseradish sauce.

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[Photograph: Andrea Lynn]

Cellophane Noodles with Pork and Thai Basil
Cellophane Noodles with Pork and Thai Basil

The noodles are tossed with stir-fried ground meat and plenty of garlic and chili, plus lots of cilantro and Thai basil. Light but filling, this makes for a nice side dish or a casual meal.

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[Photograph: Chichi Wang]

Spicy Tuna Salad with Young Ginger and Lemongrass
Spicy Tuna Salad with Young Ginger and Lemongrass

You can serve this salad in lettuce cups as an appetizer or treat it as a main dish and eat it with warm jasmine rice.

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[Photograph: Leela Punyaratabandhu]

Crunchy and Spicy Shrimp Stir-Fry with Snap Peas
Crunchy and Spicy Shrimp Stir-Fry with Snap Peas

Crispy shrimp with salt and Sichuan peppercorn are paired with sweet and crunchy snap peas.

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[Photograph: Nick Kindelsperger]

Cantonese-Style Lobster with Ginger and Scallions
Cantonese-Style Lobster with Ginger and Scallions

Large chunks of shell-on lobster stir-fried with scallions, ginger, hot peppers, and yellow chives in a lightly seasoned sauce. It's a mess to eat, but a delicious one.

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[Photograph: J. Kenji López-Alt]

Thai-Style Lobster Salad with Snap Peas and Salted Cucumber
Thai-Style Lobster Salad with Snap Peas and Salted Cucumber

A lighter, brighter, hotter, altogether-more-exciting version of lobster salad based on Thai flavors made with sweet, tender chunks of picked lobster meat, crisp blanched snap peas, and cucumbers.

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[Photograph: J. Kenji López-Alt]

Spicy Warm Silken Tofu with Celery and Cilantro Salad
Spicy Warm Silken Tofu with Celery and Cilantro Salad

This recipe is about as easy as it gets, but complex in its flavors, with a balance of heat, sweetness, and bracing acidity from chili oil, sugar, and Chinkiang vinegar.

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[Photograph: J. Kenji López-Alt]

Cold Sichuan Noodles with Spinach and Peanuts
Cold Sichuan Noodles with Spinach and Peanuts

The dish is hot, but the cold noodles help temper that heat. It's perfect fare for a hot late summer evening, and it comes together in about half an hour.

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[Photograph: J. Kenji López-Alt]

Pork Larb (Thai Salad with Pork, Herbs, Chili, and Toasted Rice Powder)
Pork Larb (Thai Salad with Pork, Herbs, Chili, and Toasted Rice Powder)

This dish is intensely flavored, and the embodiment of the sweet-sour-salty-hot flavor profile that defines much of Thai cuisine.

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[Photograph: J. Kenji López-Alt]

Real Mapo Dofu
Real Mapo Dofu

A traditional Sichuanese dish, Mapo Dofu is made with simmered medium-firm silken tofu flavored with fermented bean paste, beef, plenty of red-hot roasted chili oil, and a handful of Sichuan peppercorns.

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[Photograph: J. Kenji López-Alt]

Jerk Pork Skewers
Jerk Pork Skewers

The jerk flavors of these pork skewers pair well with the accompanying honey-lime sauce, which has a cooling effect that balances everything out.

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[Photograph: Joshua Bousel]

Baby Back Ribs with Mojo Barbecue Sauce
Baby Back Ribs with Mojo Barbecue Sauce

First, these ribs are cooked slow and low. Then, they're steeped in citrus and beer, while a lively, Cuban mojo-inspired barbecue sauce simmers on the stovetop.

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[Photograph: Jennifer Olvera]

Sweet Barbecue Kim-cheese Burgers
Sweet Barbecue Kim-cheese Burgers

The combination of grilled beef in a sweet and salty marinade and kimchi is about as classic as it gets. Think: kalbi or bulgogi. Even the combination of marinated beef, kimchi, and cheese is not unprecedented. So to put kimchi on a burger seems only natural.

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Hot Hawaiian Burgers (Spam, Pineapple, Swiss, and Sriracha Mayo)
Hot Hawaiian Burgers (Spam, Pineapple, Swiss, and Sriracha Mayo)

This delicious combo hits the rich/fresh/sweet flavors and the crisp/moist textures that are irresistible on a burger.

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[Photograph: J. Kenji López-Alt]

Grilled Mexican Chorizo with Spicy Tomato Caper Sauce
Grilled Mexican Chorizo with Spicy Tomato Caper Sauce

Sausages are like the Voltron of the grilled pork world, combining the best characteristics of all the other popular cuts of pork into one perfectly juicy, always tender, well-seasoned through-and-through, universe-saving package.

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Bacon and Kimchi Steamed Buns with Carrot and Cucumber Slaw
Bacon and Kimchi Steamed Buns with Carrot and Cucumber Slaw

A tasty combination of two flavor-packed ingredients: bacon and kimchi. These are salty, meaty, and spicy, all wrapped up into one soft, neat package.

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[Photograph: Nick Kindelsperger]

Cajun Chicken Fritters
Cajun Chicken Fritters

A fried buttermilk cornmeal batter reminiscent of hushpuppies makes these chicken fritters golden and crispy all around.

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[Photograph: Yvonne Ruperti]

Sardines in Spicy Tomato Sauce
Sardines in Spicy Tomato Sauce

Fresh sardines quickly broiled atop a fragrant sauce are a step above the canned variety and just as effortless to prepare.

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[Photograph: Marvin Gapultos]

Jalapeño Popper Grilled Cheese
Jalapeño Popper Grilled Cheese

There's not much to tell you about this sandwich that isn't already explained in the title. It's got roasted jalapeño. It's got cheddar or American cheese. It's got cream cheese. It's also got some bacon because bacon, right? The whole thing gets toasted until hot, crisp, and gooey in a mix of butter and rendered bacon fat. It gets eaten fast.

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Stuffed Roasted Poblanos with Cashew-Chipotle Sauce
Stuffed Roasted Poblanos with Cashew-Chipotle Sauce

This recipe—roasted poblanos stuffed with rice, raisins, and capers, doused in a smoky cashew-based salsa, and baked with cheese- is impossible to resist.

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[Photograph: J. Kenji López-Alt]

Green Chile Chicken Macaroni and Cheese
Green Chile Chicken Macaroni and Cheese

A South of the Border variation on macaroni and cheese.

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[Photograph: J. Kenji López-Alt]

Carne Adovada (New Mexico-Style Pork with Red Chilies)
Carne Adovada (New Mexico-Style Pork with Red Chilies)

Rich, bright, flavorful, hot, and meaty, with perfectly juicy, spoon-tender hunks of pork just waiting to fall apart under your teeth or to be shredded in a hot, chili sauce.

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Real-Deal Tortilla Soup
Real-Deal Tortilla Soup

Don't write off tortilla soup as gringo-fied Mexican food. When made correctly, it can be as authentic, complex, and compelling as any real-deal Mexican dish.

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[Photograph: J. Kenji López-Alt]