Down the hot sauce rabbit hole
I am a fairly recent student of the wonders of Mexican cuisine, a couple of years ago I bought my first cooking book on the subject, TACOS by Alex Stupak and I was hooked.
Mexican, like Italian, is very much regional, yes, you will probably find tacos recipes in every region, much like you will find pasta recipes in every region of Italy but Mexican cuisine is far more than just tacos and refried beans, it is so complex, some mole recipes I have tried are far more complex than any other type of cuisines I have dabbled in. I remember one, in particular, took me the best part of a day to make!
This recipe I made up myself, I borrowed bits of a few other hot sauce recipes and I have christened it Arbol’s Dab, Arbol because it is mainly made with dried Arbol chillies and dab, well, I robbed that line from the hilarious YouTube programme ‘Hot Ones’, if you watch it you will know on the last wing they do a last ‘Dab’.
I would rate this sauce as medium-hot and as I note below you can de-seed the chillies if you want a tamer version, you can also cut down the number of Arbols used, follow the recipe or change it up, get creative.
Remember, if you have a Taco emergency call 9 Juan Juan.
Arbol’s dab hot sauce
- Bottles or jars with caps/lids and all sterilised
- 35 Arbol dried chillies seeded
- 10 Guajillo dried chillies seeded
- 7 Large garlic cloves
- 150 ml Organic apple cider vinegar
- 1 tsp Ground cumin
- 10 Allspice berries
- 800 g Tinned plum tomatoes (2 tins)
- 2 tsp Mexican oregano
- 2 tsp Salt
- 2 tbsp Brown sugar
- If you want a really hot sauce leave the seeds in the chillies, if not, deseed. The sauce with deseeded chillies is still at least a medium hot sauce
- Once you have prepared the chillies, add them to a dry pan and toast them for a minute or two, be very careful not to scorch them keep them moving
- In a separate pot bring 500ml of water to the boil and then add the toasted chillies to the water and boil gently for 10 mins, you will need to keep the kitchen window open during this stage
- While your waiting for the chillies prepare all the other ingredients and place all into your blender
- When the chillies are soft a pliable add them to the blender along with approx 200ml of the water you cooked them in, if you think it is too thick add a little more chilli water, about 50ml, remember it will reduce slightly after the next stage
- Blend everything until you have a smooth sauce, then heat the sauce in a pan to over 100°C for a minute or two then fill pre-sterilised bottles or jars, once you fill and close the bottle or jar turn it upside down, this will create a vacuum seal in the bottle, it is then shelf stable, once a bottle is open then I would suggest to refrigerate it.
- This recipe will yield approx 1300ml of sauce