The other day, I was browsing cookbooks at the local book store. I stumbled upon Alana Chernila’s cookbook, “Homemade Pantry: 101 Foods You Can Stop Buying and Start Making” – and I couldn’t put it down. This book is full of creative recipes and inspiring ideas to make homemade versions of everyday food items. Everything from ketchup to jam to crackers to cream cheese.
Although it’s not always practical or feasible time-wise to make your own food from scratch, it is something that is worth exploring. Even if you replace one or two store-bought items with homemade ones, you’re likely to end up with a cheaper end product that’s healthier for you and your family.
I’m a bit of a hot sauce freak: I made a batch of this sauce just the other day, and I’m almost out already. I’ve used this on an egg and potato frittatta, on pizza, and even as a spicy pita chip dip.
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Homemade Hot Sauce Recipe
You can use any blend of hot peppers: jalapeños, red Fresnos, pepperocini, habañeros, etc. I used a mix of small and large chili peppers to balance out the heat. As a rule of thumb, the smaller the pepper, the hotter it is.
Please note: Your hot sauce may turn out a different color than mine depending on the type of peppers you use. Include a few red-colored peppers if you want a sauce that looks like the one shown above.
1 pound mixed hot peppers
1 cup distilled white vinegar
1 tablespoon salt
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice (from 1/2 lime)
2 tablespoons honey
Before you start: Be sure to wear gloves when handling hot peppers! You have been warned.
Preheat oven to 450F. Rinse, dry, and place hot peppers on a large baking sheet. Bake for approximately 5 to 7 minutes, turning peppers once or twice to ensure even roasting. Once the skin on the peppers has begun to char and blacken, remove them from oven, place in a bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Let the peppers sit for about 15 minutes. Wearing protective gloves, peel the skin off of the peppers and remove as many seeds as possible.
Place peppers, vinegar, salt, lime juice, and honey in a food processor. Pulse until smooth. Store refrigerated for up to a month.
Recipe adapted from The Homemade Pantry: 101 Foods You Can Stop Buying and Start Making by Alana Chernila
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