Fermented Chilli Sauce

I love a good chilli sauce. There were phases of my life where I’d pretty much smother everything with some kind of spicy sauce, but fortunately I grew out of that before it got to the stage where I was wearing a bottle of Tabasco in a holster at my waist.

I’m starting to get into pickles and the process of fermentation, so this was my first experiment – and it turned out pretty damned good, if I do say so myself.

Ideally get yourself a fermentation jar – the one I used is 1 litre and is pencilled in for future adventures in pickles, potatoes for chips, and kimchee. You can use a regular jar, but you will need to open it it daily to release the gas that will build up from the fermentation.

The use of the pineapple adds a little sweetness to the final blend, which sets off against the heat nicely.

You can mix and match the colours of your chillies and pepper to affect the final outcome. The one above came out a nice orange colour.

The xanthan gum is optional, but what it does is help the mix to hold together – otherwise the consituent parts will separate. If you don’t use it, then you’ll just need to shake the bottle before use – which is hardly the end of the world.

Let’s get started:

  • 75g green Birdseye chillies
  • 125g green jalapenoes
  • 75g (1/2) green pepper
  • 100g (1/2) white onion
  • 150g fresh pineapple
  • 1 bulb garlic, peeled and crushed

Slice or chop or crush all of the ingredients, and pack them into a 1 litre fermenting jar.

  • 4% Salt Brine (mix 500ml water with 20g salt)

Pour over enough of a 4% brine to cover the ingredients (if necessary you can get glass weights to hold the ingredients submerged). Ferment for 2 weeks on the kitchen worktop, covered with a tea towel.

  • 50ml Cider vinegar
  • 1/4 tsp Xanthan Gum (optional)

Strain off the brine, but keep it to one side. Load up a blender with the solid ingredients, then add the cider vinegar & xanthan gum and enough of the brine to allow the mixture to blitz into a sauce consistency of your choice.

Store in a jar or squeezy bottle in the fridge – as this is fermented, it should keep for up to 6 months (but lets be honest, if you’re fermenting your own chilli sauce then it isn’t going to last that long).

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