You all know about my abundant chilli harvest and my farm goals for this year don’t you? You don’t!!! *insert my horrified look* – then you must read this post here first.
Okay, so my chilli loaded harvest and my obsession with fermented food kind of coincided and boy am I glad that happened! I made some lip-smacking chilli pickles the year before that we ate all through last year and was AMAZING with my aloo paranthas; and then I also dried the excess chillies and made chilli powder with another big lot. But I wanted to try something new with my ripe yet fresh red chillies. That’s when I got this idea of fermented chilli sauce! This is a spicy-delicious way to make use of your chillies. And it’s so easy too. So let’s get started.
Fresh ripened red/green chillies – 400g (approx)
Onion – 1 small
Garlic – 5-10 cloves
Salt – 2 tsp
Coriander leaves – optional
Honey – optional
NOTE: I used 3 different varieties of my farm grown chillies – purple cayenne pepper, bird’s eye chilli and our regular native variety chilli. This resulted in a very spicy chilli sauce. You can choose milder/spicier versions of chillies as per your spice levels.
- Fill a 500 ml jar with as many chillies as you can squish in. It’s important to choose a jar that exactly fits the contents.
- Add garlic and finally top it with onions. It is wise to have onions at the top as it is better at resisting the build-up of mold during the fermentation process.
- Add rock salt. (Alternatively you can dissolve it in water and then add the brine too)
- Cover with filtered water and make sure the contents are submerged under water.
- You can add a fermentation weight (any clean marble/any weight that’s non-reactive) to keep the contents under the water.
- Put a lid on and ferment in a dark, warm location for 7-10 days.
- Don’t forget to open the lid every day to let out the gas built-up. (If not, there could be spillage, so make sure you keep it in a place that’s safe for accidental spills)
- The liquid will get cloudy as the days progress and it’s normal. It will develop a pleasant, fermented smell.
- After 7-10 days, strain the liquid from the chillies. Reserve the water.
- Blend the chillies in a mixer jar. At this point you can add any seasoning you’d like. I added coriander leaves.
- Season to taste and add some of the reserved fermentation liquid to give your hot sauce the consistency you like it.
- Mine turned out very spicy due to very hot variety of chillies that I used. So I added a tablespoon of honey.
- Sterilize a glass bottle and transfer the sauce into it.
- Store it in refrigerator.
IMPORTANT NOTE: The sauce will continue to ferment as time goes on, so be aware of that, and burp the bottles often. (DON’T fill the bottles up to the brim)
Fermentation is a process that needs to be monitored carefully. If the contents are not submerged in water and gets exposed to air, mould and bacterial growth may happen which may be detrimental to the process. It’s best to discard it if you find something amiss.
Your spicy hot fermented chilli sauce is ready!!! Use it in Asian cooking or as a condiment or dipping sauce.
Isn’t this the easiest chilli sauce ever! Let me know if you like to try it too.