Monday, May 19, 2008

Garlic and ginger chili paste

As a pet project I've been drying a bunch of different peppers that I picked up at M2M Mart on 3rd Avenue. There's no sauce I love more than sambal olek, and I wanted to see if I could do it myself. The timing was right, too–with Ali out of town, I needed something to spice up my night.

The result is a flavorful, dynamic sauce that will go well with anything pan-Asian. I recommend adding garlic, ginger, and salt freely in order to balance the sheer spice of the peppers. Also, it's fun to experiment with the peppers you use. In this batch, I added one long medium-hot pepper whose name I don't know to the mix of smaller, more powerful peppers.


Time: 1 hour

5 dried ancho chilies
1 dried habañero pepper
5 semi-dried thai chilies
1 semi-dried long medium-hot pepper (pictured above with the thai peppers)
2 tablespoons garlic
2 teaspoons ginger
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
salt to taste

Place all fully dried chilies in a bowl of boiling water, with a weight on top to keep them submerged, for 25-30 minutes. Remove the chilies from the water and pull them open, removing the stem and seeds. If you want a hotter paste, retain some of the seeds. Retain about half a cup of the soaking water.

Place chilies, garlic, ginger, salt, and oil in a food processor or blender. Puree, adding a spoonful of the retained water every few seconds until it becomes a thick paste.


Chuck May 24, 2008 at 7:27 PM  

Looks great! I love homemade chili sauces. In my chili garlic sauce, I add a little sugar and vinegar. I like the addition of ginger in yours.

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