So, you want to know how to make your own hot sauce.
Here’s my template. This is the template I use to make my own “brand” of hot sauce, known as McEvoy Dóiteán Sauce. I’m sharing this basically under Creative Commons licensing. You can make this yourself, but if you’re gonna make money off it… you owe me money!
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.
- Carrots (peeled and sliced/diced)
- Onion (red onion, diced)
- Olive Oil
- Scorpion Peppers
- Ghost Peppers
- Dragon Tongue Peppers
- Habanero Peppers
- Serrano Chile Peppers
- Fine or Course Ground Black Pepper
- Apple Cider Vinegar
- A very effective BLENDER with chopping blades. I use a NINJA MASTER PREP PRO.
- Fine Mesh Strainer (different sizes for different jars)
- Resuable Nut Milk Bag
- Food Prep Gloves
- Hot Sauce Bottles
- OUTDOOR BBQ covered with Aluminum foil. Poke HOLES for heat vent.
SPRAY The Aluminum down with a high temp non-stick spray
- 2 to 4 reusable Mason type jars
- TONGS and BOWLS (plastic or ceramic. Metal bowls may foul the flavor with a metallic tinge. I use disposable styrofoam.)
- A SPOON (use a nice plastic spoon you can dispose of, NOT A WOOD SPOON, which may cause shavings with the fine mesh strainer. A normal household spoon is fine.)
- (OPTIONAL) Gas Mask
Mise en Place:
Set up your clearly defined work areas. The goal is to keep the peppers from contaminating everything.
COOK area (because you’re going to cook the carrots and onions on the stove). Make sure you have a nice spoon and a BBQ mitt or something. Don’t physically burn your hand or something, dude. You’ll get the burn soon enough.
BBQ AREA (OUTSIDE) – because you’re going to ROAST all of the peppers. Make sure you have tongs for flipping those peppers around. This is where you would use the gas mask, because the cooking fumes are rather intense.
BLEND AREA (OUTSIDE) I set the blender up to the left and the jars to the right. I do this on a nice big table laid out, because the blended “salsa” will transfer from here to the jars/strainers. Fumes during this process can peel wallpaper.
CLEAN AREA (because if you clean the blender and jars inside, you’re going to sleep outside tonight. The fumes from cleaning your wares are the most intense.)
Actually Making Hot Sauce:
Now, this goes without saying: WEAR THE RUBBER GLOVES when you handle the peppers. Wear two pairs, even. Or a pair of caustic chemical gloves. If you don’t, you’ll go to the bathroom later and set your penis or other affiliated nether regions aflame, or you’ll innocently scratch your eye and rush to the hospital as it pops out of socket while screaming obscenities in languages you don’t even know. These peppers are no joke. It’s not a mess around we’re talking about here, folks.
First, in a frying pan, put in the carrots and onions with a bit of olive oil (2 teaspoons? not much. Just enough to lubricate the pan. Funny, I typo’d “pain” here. To lubricate the pain, get a few shots of vodka or rum or whatever libations you prefer.) Cook until onions are translucent and carrots are soft. I used 3 medium carrots and half a medium red onion for the first batch. I only used half of this.
Now, take this mixture and put into blender or food processor. Let it sit and cool.
On the BBQ, put the Aluminum Foil down, and put down the peppers you wish. I used 24 peppers for my first batch, using:
3 Scorpions (2.1 mil Scoville)
5 Ghost (1 mil Scoville)
5 Dragon Tongue (340,000 Scoville)
4 Serranos (25,000 Scoville)
4 Habaneros (250,000 Scoville)
Please note: FRESH. WHOLE. PEPPERS. Don’t use this “reconstituted” or “dry” pepper crap. That’s not for this recipe. You can try, but I can’t vouch for the result in any fashion. Fresh/live is best. The reason is the sauce is made mostly of the JUICE from the fresh peppers. Go ahead an substitute as you see fit.
Don’t let them burn, but charring is okay (adds a smoky flavor). You’re roasting these (BBQ cover down, please) until the peppers start to become “plump and juicy”. You will notice the aroma as they soften. It is intense. Your neighbors may complain, or run out of the house screaming and throw themselves into the nearest body of water. It won’t help. If you’re getting light headed or feel like a batch of magic mushrooms is burning, stop and take a deep breath about a mile away from the BBQ before continuing.
Once plump and juicy on the BBQ, pick the peppers off ONE BY ONE (use tongs to hold them) and PLUCK THE STEM straight out. The stem should pull out easily. DON”T PULL OUT THE SEEDS OR INSIDES. If you do,you’re a wuss. If the stem doesn’t pull out easily, it’s not done roasting: put it back on the BBQ to roast till it’s tender and ready.
Put the stemless peppers into the blender/food processor.
At this point, you’ll now add about 1/4 to 1/3 cup of cider vinegar to the blender/food processor and then about 1/4 cup of water. I used bottled water.
Put the top on and… BLEND. Blend that stuff till it starts to take on an ORANGE color (the magic of the carrots, and likely your Habaneros)
Blend until SMOOTH. It will remain a bit gritty.
Now, you’re done blending this batch.
Set your FINE MESH STRAINER over the mouth of the jar. KEEP YOUR GLOVES ON AND STOP CRYING. If you have mucous coming out of your face, stop, have someone wipe it off, and continue. Yes, I know you’re tripping balls. It’s okay. It’s normal. Focus, because this is hot sauce. Unlike baseball, there’s a lot of crying in hot sauce.
During this process, you’ll notice the mixture stops draining liquid. This is because the “salsa” is still pretty much pulp. Using the spoon, carefully stir the “salsa” in the fine mesh. The liquid will surely drain as you stir. When you can’t get anymore out by stirring then it’s time to use the CHEESECLOTH.
At this point, I’ll advise: DO NOT ATTEMPT THE FOLLOWING WITHOUT GLOVES. Really. Unless you don’t want to use your hands anymore. You might have gotten away without gloves for the above part, but the next part the gloves are a bloody requirement.
Get a block of cheese cloth roughly twice the size of the fine mesh strainer OR your Nut Milk bad (yes, that sounds gross, but it works).
DUMP out the remaining material in the fine mesh strainer into the cheesecloth/Nut Milk Bag. It’s best to just lay this out in your hand.
WRAP the cheesecloth around the material, and move over to the jar and SQUEEZE.
LOOK! MORE HOT SAUCE IS COMING OUT. Between your FINGERS! You ARE wearing gloves, right? Maybe 2 layers of rubber gloves? Heavens blessing that you are. Anyways, squeeze the materials GENTLY. If you squeeze excitedly, and squirt yourself in the face with hot sauce… well… God be with you.
Squeeze the cheesecloth until no more “juice” comes out. DON’T THROW OUT THE RINDS! You can “dry” those into “death pepper” with your oven (on parchment paper at lowest possible temp. Don’t burn it.) or just set it out to dry (keep away from the cats/dogs/small children). The resulting matter is also effective at keeping rabbits and gophers out of your garden.
REPEAT the above steps until all of the material from the blender/food processor is out.
Now, you can use funnels and the hot sauce bottles to temporarily incarcerate your very own hot sauce in bottles. In most cases, the hot sauce cannot eat through the glass. (seriously. It’s not hydrochloric acid or something.)
This “recipe” doesn’t have a lot of measurements, because when I do this, I’m really doing it by eyeball. I did a small batch today, and did not use all of the peppers and carrots and onions I prepared, and I got 3 bottles of sauce (about 11 to 12 oz total).
The resulting sauce will frighten a lava flow, and cause a dragon to cry uncle. There’s a lot of other awesome phrases I’ll come up with as we go along. Got any of your own?
Any questions? Let me know.