Chipotle chilies are a wonderful, spicy, smoky flavoring accent for foods. Red-ripe jalapeño peppers are smoked until they are partially dried, then processed in several ways. A common form is canned chipotles en adobo (or adobado), chipotles rehydrated and packed in a sauce based on tomatoes, vinegar and garlic. These can be found in many supermarkets, in the Hispanic or ethnic aisle.
Asiago is an Italian cheese, available in many forms. The best match here is an aged Asiago, with a texture very like aged Parmigiano or Romano cheeses. Aged Asiago has complex sharpness and a flavor that is both fruity and nutty.
These two flavors can be combined to make a cream sauce with a kick, from both jalapeño heat and the complex flavors of Asiago cheese. This lovely pink sauce makes an unusual and zesty accompaniment for vegetables or pastas.
Rinse a heavy saucepot with cold water, then add one cup of milk to the pan. Put over very low heat and allow to come to steaming hot, then remove the pan from the heat.
Remove the veins and seeds from one chili, then chop it into 1/4-inch dice. Finely dice one medium shallot. Finely dice (or crush) one medium garlic clove.
Melt two tbsp. butter in a medium-sized, heavy skillet. Use low to medium heat. As soon as the butter stops foaming, add the chili, the shallot, the garlic, and 1/4 tsp. cumin. Stir and cook until fragrant and tender, but not browned. Add 1/4 cup white wine and continue cooking until the wine is completely reduced. Purée the vegetables in a blender or food processor, or mash well with a fork. Do not wash the skillet.
Melt three tbsp. of butter in the same skillet, again over low to medium heat. When the butter stops foaming, add the vegetable puree and four tbsp. of all purpose flour. Stir thoroughly, until the ingredients are well combined. Now add the hot milk to the pan. Whisk the mixture until completely mixed, then bring to a slow simmer.
Add one cup of cream to the saucepot and heat as you did the milk. Meanwhile, simmer the sauce in the sauté pan for five minutes, to cook the flour and thicken the sauce. Stir the sauce frequently.
Add the heavy cream to the sauce and whisk thoroughly. Add the cheese and stir until the cheese is melted and completely mixed into the sauce. Taste the sauce and season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve with pasta or with vegetables.