HOT & A LITTLE SWEET
Hot peppers do well in my garden. They’re mostly unaffected by insect pests and diseases, and even the deer are uninterested in eating them. Boy, are they prolific. It’s not unusual for a single plant to produce more than two pounds.
I wasn’t looking for new hot pepper sauce recipe. I already make pickled jalapeño peppers and carrots and hot red cherry peppers roasted with balsamic vinegar and my pantry is well-stocked with hot sauces: Sriracha, Huy Fong Sambal Oelek and chipotle peppers in adobo sauce. But David Rubel gave me a jar of his amazing hot sauce and I was hooked. (He discovered the recipe in Mrs. Wheelbarrow’s Practical Pantry : Recipes and Techniques for Year-Round Preserving.)
For this recipe I used the peppers I had on-hand—mostly seranno peppers with a few jalapeños thrown in. It was early in the season so most of the peppers were still green. I hope to have enough of the red peppers to do a whole batch of red next time. The color will be more vibrant.
1 lb hot peppers, washed and dried, stems trimmed
2 cups distilled white (or apple cider) vinegar
6 large garlic cloves, peeled and chopped
1 Tbl salt
1/4 cup honey
3 Tbl (30 grams) minced dried pineapple
1 Tbl (10 grams) minced dried mango
1/2 tsp dried mustard
1/4 tsp powdered ginger
- Char 1 lb hot peppers in cast iron skillet until they start blistering.
- Place in paper bag and steam for one hour.
- Remove from bag and place in a pyrex bowl.
- Add 2 cups vinegar, 6 garlic cloves and 1 Tbl salt.
- Stir and set overnight.
- Next day transfer to a nonreactive pot.
- Add honey, dried pineapple, dried mango, dried mustard and powdered ginger.
- Cover and bring to a strong boil, at least 3 minutes.
- Pour into a blender, one ladle at a time and purée.
- Slowly ladle mixture into a strainer and press through.
- When nonreactive pot is empty, wipe clean.
- Return mixture to the pot and boil for 5 minutes.