How to Make Hot Sauce
Once you know the secret recipe of making homemade hot sauce, you will feel like rummaging through the stacks of the local departmental store. And contrary to what you may be thinking, preparing hot sauce is super-easy and tastes much better than the ones loaded with preservatives.
When you have bountiful hot peppers, homemade hot sauce is a great thing to prepare. You can choose your own melange of hot chilies and seasonings to give your unique twist to the condiment. The first thing you will need to do is to lightly ferment the hot chilies before you blend them to prepare the sauce and then add some vinegar to it. Hot sauces all over the glove have seasonings like onion and garlic and other spices like coriander, cumin, and mustard seeds.
Choosing the right chili peppers
You can make homemade hot sauce with ripe red and orange chilies or green peppers or mix them to create a perfect heat, flavor, and sweetness balance. Many people prefer a hot sauce with home-grown chilies. It's important to point out that different species of chilies have varying moisture content. While some are high in water content with a more fleshy texture, others come with thin skins. Also, some peppers contain copious amounts of seeds, and others are hollow.
Some makers prefer straining out the pulp for a thinner hot sauce, while others make the sauce with the pulp to give it a thicker consistency. So, when you are wondering how to make hot sauce, you can adjust the hotness, flavor, and consistency to your preferences.
Fermenting the chilies for the perfect taste
Are you taken aback by the thought of fermenting the fresh peppers? Though fermentation is quite a scary thing for certain food items, fermenting chilies is quite easy. The hotness of the peppers, garlic and salt added to the mix checks the growth of unhealthy bacteria. On the other hand, the good bacteria's natural growth helps the sauce stay fresh for longer without distorting the taste.
Fermentation is also a necessary step towards nurturing the flavor and preserve the sauce for longer. You can keep the pepper mash submerged entirely in the brine and leave it to ferment for a week or two. Alternately, you can allow the mash to ferment at room temperature for a few days.
Processing the peppers for the smoky hot sauce
You will first need a food processor in which you will have to add the hot peppers, onions, garlic, salt, and water to get a coarse chop of thick pulp. Next, you will have to transfer the mixture into a glass jar and sheath it with a cheesecloth. You may also tie it with a string or a rubber band to hold the cloth in place.
Allow this mixture to rest at room temperature for a day or two. After that, you can stir the mix in vinegar and allow it to ferment for a week or two without removing the cheesecloth. After the fermentation is complete, you will have to transfer the mix into a blender to give it a smooth texture.
If you prefer your homemade hot sauce's thinner consistency, you will have to strain the mixture through a strainer. On the flip side, you can also strain it through a clean cheesecloth but remember to squeeze the pulp to procure the last drop of the juice for making the sauce. But when you want to have the natural consistency of the pulp, you add some more water or even vinegar if you wish it to have more acidic content.
Make sure you wear food-safe gloves throughout the preparation process or else you will feel the hotness on your palms for days together. Compared to hot sauces available in local stores, the flavor of homemade hot sauce is impeccable and fresh. You will need only 15 to 30 minutes in preparation. You can enjoy mouth-watering results that will last for months if you are patient with devouring the quantity. But even if you finish a batch, you can make more and add your own variations to the conventional notion of making hot sauce.
How about some sweetness in your sauce?
Many people prefer a sweet tinge in their homemade hot sauce as they believe that the sweetness helps balance out the heat and spice of the sauce. You may either add sugar to the final preparation or bring about sweetness by adding sweet vegetables to your preparation.
For bringing about natural sweetness in your homemade hot sauce, you can add some chopped onions when you first added the chopped peppers and garlic. You may also put in some diced carrots to bring a naturally sweet flavor to the sauce.
The next step: adding spices
At this stage, you may add some grounded coriander or cumin seeds to your sauce. You may also add some toasted and grounded mustard seeds for endowing a unique flavor to your preparation. If you are a beginner, you may start with having only the peppery flavor to your hot sauce, but if you are confident about the choices of your spices and their flavors, you can switch up the things. You can also alter the hotness of your sauce at this stage. If it's hotter than what you can endure, you may add some sugar or tomato puree to your sauce. You may also add brown sugar, agave nectar, or honey to the preparation. Alternately, if you want to make it hotter, you may add black pepper powder or red chili powder to spice things up.
The Bottom Line
Needless to say, your homemade hot sauce should be the best one possible. For this, you should test your recipe time and again. You can also invite your acquaintance and get their feedback about the taste, texture, color, hotness level, and flavor. Though your sauce-making has started in the kitchen as your passion and hobby, it may even take a turn into a viable business idea.