For some people, the spice of life is measured on the Scoville scale of pepper heat. Hot sauce isn’t just a random condiment, it’s a way to elevate a meal, compliment the flavors, and, yes, sometimes it’s there to make your taste buds blaze.
If your only experience with hot sauce is a red liquid that comes in a little glass bottle, then you’re missing out on a universe of fun flavors. The taste experts at our sponsor HelloFresh know how to spice up your hot sauce repertoire with recipes that range from mellow to sizzling.
HelloFresh is known for delivering healthy, easy-to-prepare meal kits, but it also offers resources to help you take the next step in your personal home-chef journey. It’s surprisingly simple to make your own hot sauce, so check out these sparkling, savory ideas from HelloFresh.
The making of a great hot sauce
Hot sauces are all about the peppers. Jalapenos are famous, but also look at creative combinations that use paprika, red chiles, black pepper, bell peppers, and more sweltering options like habaneros. You can mix and match to find the perfect profile.
The character of a sauce comes from your ingredient choices. You can really explore a new flavor frontier by using unexpected additions, like coconut milk, sesame oil, roasted garlic, fennel, or cardamom.
HelloFresh will teach you how to make four sauces from scratch, which range from mild and herby to hot and sassy: Oregano Hot Sauce, Garlic Hot Sauce, Gentle Green Hot Sauce, and Habanero Hot Sauce. Think about pairing these with a HelloFresh taco meal kit for a next-level dining experience.
The prep work for these fresh sauces is minimal. Your main tasks are to remove the stems from the peppers and measure out the ingredients. You won’t need fancy tools. You just need to combine everything in a blender or food processor and blend them until they’re smooth.
Hot sauce tips
Wear gloves: If you’ve ever accidentally rubbed your eyes after touching a hot pepper, then you know why this tip is important. Bell peppers and other peppers on the milder end of the scale won’t cause much irritation, but hotter peppers can be incredibly painful. Wear gloves to keep the chili oils off your fingers. Bold chefs who work with extremely hot peppers (like Carolina Reapers or Trinidad Scorpions) often use safety glasses and face masks to protect themselves.
Tone it down: Is your hot sauce too hot? You can try taming the fire by adding more oil, or increasing the other ingredients (like tomato sauce or vinegar) if you have them on hand. Essentially, you’re thinning out the concentration of peppers. Some cooks swear by a little sweetness, such as stirring in some sugar or honey. Add a little, test the taste, and then add more if needed.
Cool the flames: It seems everybody has a favorite trick for chilling out after eating too-hot of a dish, but the first thing you should reach for is a full-fat dairy product like whole milk or yogurt. This is also why stirring some sour cream into too-spicy chili can help save the dish and make it edible.
Explore: Once you’ve mastered HelloFresh’s take on fresh hot sauces, it’s time to explore a little on your own. Do you like smokey flavors? Try out some chipotle pepper. Prefer to walk on the mild side? Ancho peppers won’t punish your tongue. Are you nuts for heat? A ghost pepper might be a worthy challenge.
Wherever your hot-sauce quest takes you, HelloFresh will be there to help you make the meals to go with it. Click here now and get $30 off.
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