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Controlled Burn Homemade Hot Sauce Recipe


controlled burn hot sauce
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3.96 from 49 votes
Here's a recipe for a signature hot pepper sauce you can easily make at home. Focused on flavor first, our controlled burn hot sauce is infinitely more complex than most sauces and has just the right amount of heat to amp up foods without overpowering them. The recipe makes enough to give some away as gifts.

Course:
Sauces and Condiments
Cuisine:
American
,
Southwestern

Makes:

Servings: 1 quart

Takes:

Prep Time: 1 hour
Cook Time: 40 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 pound pepper blend (see below)
  • cup sweet Kansas City style barbecue sauce
  • 1 cup distilled white vinegar
  • cup balsamic vinegar
  • ¼ cup triple sec (orange liqueur)
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 1 small onion
  • 1 can chipotle in adobo sauce (4 oz can)
  • 1 tablespoon peeled and grated ginger
  • ½ tablespoon ground black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons Morton coarse kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • ¼ teaspoon mustard powder
  • ½ cup pineapple juice
  • 1 lime, juiced
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract

A Good Red Pepper Blend:

  • ½ pound fresh sweet red bell peppers (about 1 large one)
  • ¼ pound fresh habanero or Scotch bonnet peppers (100,000 - 350,000 Scoville Heat Units)
  • ¼ pound fresh red jalapeño peppers (5,000 - 10,000 SHU)
  • ¼ pound fresh red serrano peppers (about 25,000 SHU) or cayenne peppers (30,000 - 50,000 SHU)
Notes:
About the pepper blend. The recipe calls for 1 pound of pepper blend, but the raw components weigh more than 1 pound. After you remove the seeds and stems, you should have about 1 pound remaining.
About the vinegar. The vinegar is needed to extract flavor and act as a preservative. I like the neutral flavor of distilled vinegar because it lets the peppers shine. Other vinegars, like cider vinegar, have too much flavor.
About the salt. Remember, Morton coarse kosher salt is half the concentration of table salt so if you use table salt, use half as much. Click here to read more about salt and how it works.
Stylin'. I encourage you to stick close to my recipe at first, and then riff on it. Make it your own to suit your taste. If you want afterburner heat, increase the habaneros content. Sweeter? More pineapple juice. More garlic? Go for it. Try adding lemon juice, orange juice, orange marmalade, mango, papaya, pineapple, molasses, honey, Worcestershire, tequila, roasted carrot, tomatillo, cumin, cilantro, or curry powder. Try grilling the peppers, garlic, and onion. Switch the triple sec to Grand Marnier, or Bourbon. Add 1/2 teaspoon liquid smoke.
Metric conversion:

These recipes were created in US Customary measurements and the conversion to metric is being done by calculations. They should be accurate, but it is possible there could be an error. If you find one, please let us know in the comments at the bottom of the page

Method

  • Prep. Put on rubber gloves. Don't attempt this without them. You might even want to wear safety glasses while making it. Habaneros are no foolin', mister. That's pepper spray. Start by cutting off the stems of the peppers. Slice the peppers in half lengthwise. Pull out the seeds, but leave in the white veins. Cut out any soft or rotted sections. Rinse them inside and out, and chop them into chunks about 1/2" each. Put them into a food processor with the barbecue sauce. Turn it on and let 'er rip for 2 to 4 minutes until it is pureed and slushy. Dump into a 2 quart non-reactive pot. Add the two vinegars and triple sec.
  • Peel and chop the garlic and onion into pea-size chunks. Put the garlic, onion, chipotle in adobo, grated ginger, black pepper, salt, oregano, mustard powder, pineapple juice, lime juice, and vanilla extract into the food processor, puree, and add to the pot. Stir.
  • Cook. The next step is cooking, and I recommend you do it outside. This pot will puts out some strong, but not objectionable, vapors. But surely someone will complain. So use your grill, or your grill's sideburner. Bring to a boil, then dial back to a simmer and let it burble with the cover on for about 30 minutes.
  • Put in a clean tight lidded bottle and store in a cool dark place. To preserve its fresh brightness, store in a refrigerator. If you prefer, after aging it for a week or more, you can run it through a fine mesh strainer and bottle it without the chunks, like a commercial hot sauce.
  • Serve. Use this flavorful sauce as you would any hot sauce.