Friday, August 11, 2006

Hot Sauce

Last summer our garden had a Thai pepper plant. It was real cute, and had a bunch of little peppers. The peppers were way too hot to eat (we're not heat freaks). I used probably two of them in dishes, and that was plenty.

Toward the end of summer, the peppers all ripened and looked as though they were going to go spicy heaven, so I harvested them (15 or so) and tried to think of what to do. What do you do with peppers too spicy for normal eating?

I could have tried to dry them, but I was afraid of them just rotting - and the colors probably wouldn't stay. Plus, I already had a bunch of red pepper flakes.

So I chopped them up and put them in a small jar with vinegar - hot sauce. I put the jar in the fridge and promptly forgot about it. Some months later I checked the jar and it looked like the real thing. The vinegar was a nice bright red, and the rings of peppers floated in that beautiful liquid. It even tastes pretty good - kind of like a cross between Cholula and Tabasco.

I'm waiting for some hot peppers to show up at the farmers market (dunno if ours will show up, we've not given much love to the garden). I think it'll be fun to make one or two hot sauces. I'll probably blend one of them, and try roasting some of the peppers in one. I'll probably also add a little salt and sugar, and maybe some tomato, to give the sauces a little depth.

My first sauce aged rather well, and I'm almost done with it (I did add some more vinegar to stretch the batch a little further).

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