August 31, 2015
There are certain critical moments in life when hot sauce is desperately needed: Fried chicken moments…fried eggs and potato moments, breaded moments, barbecue moments. Moments when you need the gastronomical equivalent of a slap around the face. I love the buzz that really, really hot sauce radiates, so I’ve put 7 scotch bonnets in mine. The effect is like drinking strong whiskey, it makes your insides dance.
My flatmate had to leave the house when I made it because her eyes hurt. The heat builds to a steady pain which you can temper with fewer scotch bonnets. This batch is for my cousin Sam, who’s been harping on about making his own for several weeks, to no avail. He’s just been offered a new job in St. Andrews. I figure it should see him through the drop in temperature.
By charring the chillies, peppers and tomatoes you add a kiss of smoke to the sauce. There should be no fire without smoke.
1 white onion, peeled and chopped
3 red peppers
7 scotch bonnet chillies
4 normal red chillies
8 medium tomatoes
5 cloves garlic
2 sprigs of thyme, de-leafed and chopped (optional)
1.5 tbsp sugar
1 tsp salt
270ml red wine vinegar
Char the chillies, tomatoes and peppers either over a gas hob or a hot grill until the skin has pretty much blackened all over. Transfer them to a plastic bag, tie it and leave for about 15min. This steams them so their skins come off easily. Meanwhile cook the onion in olive oil and a pinch of salt for 10 mins. Cook them low so they don’t colour
Take the peppers and co. out of the plastic bags and discard their skins and chop everything (keep the seeds in the chillies)
Add them to the softened onion
Add the sugar, salt, vinegar, garlic and thyme
Bring to the boil, then lower the heat and simmer for 30min
Blitz in a food processor (you may need to add a touch of boiling water and a little more vinegar if the mixture is too thick)
Pass through a fine sieve
Leave to cool