The end of summer often brings with it cooler temperatures and beautiful red hot chile peppers. There are some growing in my garden, but I also buy some at the farmers market. There are so many varieties, some are hotter than others and they ripen into many different colors as well. I never hesitate to pick up a few chiles I haven’t tried before. You never know what you might discover.
When I find a batch of great red chiles, I often make a batch of homemade Sriracha, the famous Rooster sauce. The most popular brand sold in stores is the brand with the rooster on it, hence its name. It’s tasty for sure, but once you’ve made your own, there is no going back! The homemade version has straight forward ingredients, and can be customized to your specific preferences. In Randy Clemens’ Sriracha cookbook (there are 2, one vegetarian and one with meat) you can find his recipe for not only the sauce, but also ideas on using it cooking. There are also many variations online.
I have adapted the recipe to suit my taste and and to the types of chiles available. The sauce doesn’t take much time to make, but it does need to ferment for a week after the initial steps. Be sure to keep that in mind when you make it!
Here is my recipe:
- 2 pounds of red chile peppers (cayenne, red jalapeños, red fresnos, red cherry bombs)
- 3 – 5 cloves of fresh garlic, peeled
- 2 tablespoons garlic powder
- 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1 tablespoon kosher salt
- 1 tablespoon light brown sugar
- 1/2 cup distilled white vinegar
- water if needed
Wash the chile peppers and cut off the stems.
Put into the bowl of a food processor along with the garlic, garlic powder, sugars and salt.
Pulse until you have a coarse puree.
Put the puree into a clean glas jar, seal and keep at room temperature and out of direct sunlight for one week.
Stir the mixture daily.
After a week it should smell a bit fermented.
Put the chile mixture into a non-reactive pot and add the vinegar.
Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for about 5 minutes.
Turn off the heat and let the sauce cool to room temperature.
Transfer it to a blender or food processor and puree until its nice and smooth.
If the puree is too thick, add a tiny bit of water.
Push the puree through a very fine meshed strainer, using a spoon.
Squeeze as much as possible of the solids through.
Taste and add more salt, sugar, garlic powder, vinegar or water if desired.
Fill the sauce into a glass bottle and refrigerate for up to 6 months.