Wednesday, January 18, 2012

It's Simple, Really...I Add Love and Scrabble to My Homemade Hot Sauce

People often ask me "Mr. Critic, what IS the SECRET to your delicious hot sauce?"

And I say to them "It's simple really, I use love, peppers and vinegar. And apparently Scrabble has something to do with it, too, as you can see by the picture."

I've recently fallen deeply in love with spicy foods and prefer, now, to make my own hot sauce rather than buy it at the store. That little glass cylinder of hot sauce there is approximately a third of a cup, and cost no more than 20 cents to make.

I grow and dry many of my own peppers, but I've also found an Asian market in town, on 3rd street near Mia and Grace (if you're into the locavore hipster foods thing) or the Ice Pick (if you're more into mosh pits and surgical staples thing) which sells good sized bags of dried Thai peppers for two bucks.

I used a small handful of peppers for this batch. Make sure to have a small, resealable glass container, some vinegar and something to mix with handy (like a chop stick or a small spoon).

1. Grind the dried peppers in a coffee grinder.

2. FOR THE LOVE OF ALL THAT's GOOD DO NOT DO NOT DO NOT open the coffee grinder right away or you'll get a lungful of powdered, vapoized Thai peppers. Get me? So just wait five minutes while the dust settles.

3. Dump the powder into the glass.

4. Mix in pure vinegar, mixing all the way until the sauce is the consistency you want.

There. You're done. I do have a food drier so I dry some of my own peppers. The orange-ish pepper there is a dried habanero pepper from my mother's garden. Funny story about those....she thought she had planted sweet bell peppers and got all these tiny little orange peppers. So did I, and I ate one when I went to drop my son off at her house.

Ouch. That was before my love affair with spicy foods.

In other news...that other container up there is a re-used maple syrup container. Filled it with some dried Thai peppers and some jalapeƱo peppers and then filled it with vinegar. I use the hot pepper infused vinegar for cooking.

So there's that.

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