Usually, when I run into a non-urgent problem, I mentally set it aside, let it ferment, and let a solution present itself when the opportunity arises. Comically, I did exactly that to the idea of making homemade Sriracha, as well as literally to the Sriracha itself. Alex and I got very excited of Andrea Nguyen’s instructional post on how to make homemade Sriracha, but could not figure out where to get good quality peppers. So we both set the idea aside to ferment for a few months…
Last week, as he picked me up for our Tuesday night ritual, full of food in every form (we usually connect over a few episodes of Chopped, discuss our latest food discoveries, and cook and eat something one of us previously made), he surprised me with red jalapenos to make Sriracha! If you want to be heteronormative about this, you would assume that a gal would squeal over a diamond ring or expensive dress, but not me. I squealed over the fact that Alex was making my dream come true.
Alex began the process by throwing all the chilies, garlic, salt, and sugar in a food processor and ground it until it was pasty, but still a little chunky. It resembled sambal olek. He poured the mixture into a bowl and plastic wrapped it. We left it to ferment at room temperature for four days in my kitchen. I almost forgot about it, teehee. I finished it today by first scraping off some mold that had developed on the top (which is natural) and poured it into a saucepan with a quarter cup of vinegar. I brought it to a boil, then turned down the heat to let it simmer for five minutes. I set it aside to cool down, then I processed it in my cute lil’ turquoise food processor one last time. Since the mixture was pretty thick, I added a couple tablespoons of water to facilitate the grinding. Once it got reeeeeal pasty, I strained it with a sieve and tested it.
At this point, it was a little too tangy for my taste due to the vinegar, so I sweetened it with a teaspoon of brown sugar, diluted it with a bit of water (that stuff was thiiiiiiiiick), and bottled that brilliant red paste! The taste is mind blowing. It was so much easier than I thought. At this rate, I doubt I’ll ever buy the bottled stuff again, and I recommend that you try this recipe!
And this is why I love my woman.<3 Alex has redefined home cooking for me. Before I met him, I never dreamed of making pie crust, pizza dough, Sriracha, pickle, authentic Thai/Vietnamese/Chinese/Japanese/Italian/Indian dishes, etc. in my very own kitchen. I was once brainwashed by commercial processed foods; the idea of food being an inconvenience was ingrained in me, making me believe that I could never successfully execute these dishes without the help of premade elements. I was so very wrong. Thanks to Alex, I’ve been introduced to the pleasures and rewards of making wholesome foods from scratch. Instead of feeling defeated or lazy, I feel confident about problem solving and creating in the kitchen. I am so grateful that he helps me strengthen my weaknesses, connects with me through hours spent in the kitchen, and shares these little pleasures with me.