As a child I was introduced to all forms of chili peppers at various farmers markets and festivals and I grew to love the heat and the diverse flavours. When I was 14, my dad took me to buy a Dorset Naga plant from the farm that grew the first variant of the Naga in the UK. The Naga was so hot that only a small fingernail sized piece was required to spice a whole batch of Chili Con Carne however the plant yielded a massive crop of chili peppers and so we dried them, and I eventually made hot sauces from the dried chilies.
Below is my simple recipe for a ridiculously hot (but flavoursome) hot sauce, using Scotch Bonnet chilli peppers. It’s fragrant and it is adds the kick to the base to my Buffalo Chicken Wing sauce. If you want to ‘dial down’ the heat then I would recomend using Jalapeno chilli peppers instead of the Bonnet.
A word of warning, sauteeing chilli peppers can cause some coughing due to the capsaicin ‘fumes’. Please cook in a well ventilated area and always wash your hands after handling chilli peppers.
Ferocious Fiery Hot SauceCourse: CondimentDifficulty: Medium
6 Scotch Bonnet chili peppers
3 cloves garlic (crushed)
2 tbsp granulated sugar
1 tsp cooking oil (Rapeseed, Sunflower etc.)
half brown onion (finely diced)
1 tsp sea salt flakes
125 ml white wine vinegar
125 ml water
- Prepare the chili peppers by removing the stalk, de-seeding and slicing thinly.
Warning: wear gloves if your hands are sensitive as the capsicum and oils in Scotch Bonnets can give you a burning sensation – always wash your hand thoroughly after handling chilies and do not touch your eyes.
- Combine the oil and onions in a saucepan and cook over a low-medium heat until translucent, approximately 3 minutes. Add the sugar, garlic, salt and chili peppers and stir on a medium heat for 30-seconds.
Warning: Cooking chilies can release fumes so make sure you cook in a well ventilated room and avoid breathing in the steam released while cooking the chilies.
- Add the water to the pan and bring to a gentle simmer. Cook for 20-minutes, stirring frequently to prevent the mixture sticking to the pan, until all the ingredients are soft and fragrant.
- Remove the pan from the heat and allow to cool. Once cool add to the bowl of a blender with the vinegar and blend until smooth. Taste for seasoning and add sugar/salt as desired.
- Decant to a sterilized glass bottle/jar and store in the fridge. You should use your hot sauce withing 3-days of making it.
- Always wear gloves when handling hot chilies as their oils can give you a burning sensation. Ensure you wash your hands thoroughly after handling chili peppers and do not touch your eyes.