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Joe's Famous Chili Blend



"This is the simple recipe for the chili blend I keep in the fridge and apply to rice, tabouli, and any number of other things to which you may want to add bite. The bite can amount to a little nip, or a brain-searing chomp, depending on how much you use, what types of ingredients you use, whether it is really fresh or aged (fresh is much hotter) and whether it is cooked. Anyhow, use at your own risk...but I love the stuff and must go through a pint a month."--Joe


In a blender, mix:

1 cupful of stemmed Thai chillies, the fresher the better. If you handle these with bare hands, please remember that the capsaicin, the stuff that makes chillies hot, will be active on your fingers. Washing
your hands with soap helps a lot, but if you touch your eye, you may feel something. I take no special care other than washing, and haven't been burnt in a long time.

1/2-cup garlic by volume. I sometimes sautée the garlic in olive oil, often use the stuff Trader Joe's has already coarsely ground in a jar.

2 cups vinegar. I like Filipino coconut vinegar, but any sour vinegar is fine.

If you like ginger, you can add that, or a little soy sauce is OK, too.

Blend it on grate, until it looks grated. Leave the blender container closed for several minutes; when the chillies are really fresh, a visible cloud can arise that will drift around the room, and you WILL remember if you inhale it. The vapor reabsorbs if you let it set a bit.

Store in the fridge.


Lasts a long time, and you can cook it on food (such as broiled eggplant) where the hotness will be suppressed and you'll just get an interesting sweet/sour nip, with a flavor reminiscent of cooked bell peppers.

Incidentally, even habanero chillies, the extremely hot ones used in Latino and Jamaican recipes, surrender most of their bite and become pleasantly tasty when they are cooked.

Major Ingredients: