Hot Sauce to Blow Your Socks Off

We love all things spicy. REALLY spicy. I was pissed when Sriracha changed their formula and became milder. That shit was the bomb and now I have to slather it on my food just to get some heat. We go through Tapatio like it’s going out of style. It’s only taken about a month for me to go through half a large bottle of it at work. Only I use it for maybe 4 meals per week. We have hot sauce on eggs, pizza, soup, and salad. I put cayenne in hot chocolate and flourless chocolate cake. Yes, we LOVE spicy.

We’ve been fairly unsuccessful growing hot peppers. The summers just don’t get warm enough. Our jalapenos arrive sweet. But Esperanza gave me a tip this year and it worked like a charm. She told me her grandfather’s secret of getting hot peppers. Plant a habanero with your other hot peppers and they’ll pass their magic onto them. Hot diggity dog, we got hot peppers – and lots of them.

We’ve been using them as needed in dishes, but I wanted to make sure to preserve some other than just pickling them. I searched for a great hot pepper sauce recipe. I thought I had found one. It didn’t say anything about it being a hot and sweet sauce but I should have known that it would be as I dumped an equal amount of sugar into the vinegar. I ended up cooking it down so far that it turned into more of a hot pepper jam than a sauce. While it’s really tasty, it wasn’t really what I wanted.

I wanted a vinegary concoction that had great flavor but wasn’t sweet. I looked quite a bit and never really found any that I liked. Another problem I was having was that I had a TON of peppers and most hot sauce recipes didn’t really convert well as they were based on volume measurements rather than weight measurements.

I decided to wing it and I’m really glad I did. This came out fantastic while also being incredibly hot. You can, of course, mix in sweet peppers so it’s not as hot. I used some sweet peppers like Red Marconi and mild peppers such as Anaheims, but I mostly used fish, Fresno, habanero, serrano, Thai Dragon, Kung Pao, and Aci Sivri varieties.

The secret to a really good hot sauce, and actually any good condiment or pickle is to always add a touch of sweetness. Not so much that it would be considered sweet, but just enough to cut the acid. This was one thing I found missing in most of the recipes I came across. While you can use regular sugar, I like the deepness of brown sugar for this sauce.

Ingredients: 
1 lb peppers – mix of hot and sweet depending on the amount of heat you want
1 c cider vinegar
1 Tbs salt
1 Tbs brown sugar
5 cloves of garlic – pressed

1. With gloves on, cut off stems of peppers and run through food processor until the juices begin to release. Put puree into a heavy stock pot.
2. Add the remaining ingredients and over medium high heat, bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes.
3. Using a stick blender, puree even further until there are no more lumps.
4. Fill hot, sterile, 8 oz jars leaving a 1/2″ head space.
5. Process in a water bath canner for 10 minutes.

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Discussion

  1. This is absolutely the best hot sauce I have ever had. Thanks for sending the jar sweetie. I can’t wait to make more. (I will use the habanero trick too as my peppers were also too mild) Hot spicy kick with an incredible flavor, good on everything!

  2. Dave Braun says:

    Wow, nice and simple. I used my nardello,scotch bonnet and jalapenos and added a touch of molasses. Just perfect with a lasting burn.

  3. Thank you for the recipe! My son loves hot sauce and with 3 Apache pepper plants loaded up it looks like this will be the next thing made with them. (Already made him a batch of hot pepper sandwich spread.) Wish me luck, I am going to combine the first two steps and put all the peppers into the Vitamix and let it churn away then finish on the stove. For the sake of his stomach lining I think I will reduce the amount of seeds fist. ;)

  4. Catherine says:

    This is a great recipe. I had a mix of Serrano del Sols, Mariachis, and Pimento de Padrons. I grilled half of the peppers to give it a smoky flavor and added some spices (allspice, cinnamon, and ground ginger). Love the taste. Any thoughts on how long the hot sauce will last? Was thinking a year, but just not sure. Probably going to have one more crop of peppers this year and will make it again!

  5. Was just Googling to see if Sriracha changed their formula. I swore it used to be hotter. Now it seems sweeter with just a hint of chile heat.

    • I have found that if you buy it at an Asian market it is the hotter version. I think they toned it down for Americans.

      • :) A fellow chile-head at work said the same thing. I’ll have to try your recipe sometime. I have tons of orange habaneros, red savina and chocolate scotch bonnets in the freezer. I <3 Maria Sharps.

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