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The Hot Sauce Topic


awbrig
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I brought back two jars of Marie Sharp's when I came home from Belize for myself.

I work with two black maids. I have turned them into a pair of siracha lovin' mama's .. If we run low, they are on me until I go to the asian market and get at least 2 of the big jars. They put it on everything. I don't remember seeing them go near the Tabasco in over 2 years.

It is good to be a BBQ Judge.  And now it is even gooder to be a Steak Cookoff Association Judge.  Life just got even better.  Woo Hoo!!!

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Wow, this whole thread and no one has mentioned my fave:

Mustafa's Harissa - hotter than hell but fabulous, FABULOUS flavor. I hoard jars of the stuff, because there's only a few places I can find it in town.

Old El Paso Chile Company's Hell Fire and Damnation Sauce - Also great flavor profile, don't need much.

For salsa, nothing beats Herdez Salsa Casera. Well, homemade could...

Where do you purchase Mustafa's Harissa?

Which brings me to my answer:

Harissa only with North African food

Sriracha only combined with mayonaisse.

I can be reached via email chefzadi AT gmail DOT com

Dean of Culinary Arts

Ecole de Cuisine: Culinary School Los Angeles

http://ecolecuisine.com

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I love hot/spicy food but this has been a problem - I'm allergic to tabasco (it seems to be the fermented-ness of the peppers that is the problem) - so have to read ingredients VERY carefully - commercial curry powder is also difficult. My SO, however, can eat everything - his current favourite is "Lawyer's Breath" - given as a joke gift by my mum, but now a staple in the house.

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  • 2 weeks later...

For salsa, nothing beats Herdez Salsa Casera. Well, homemade could...

Herdez...I have to second that. Good, good stuff.

yum

I like the Herdez Salsa Casera as well and seem to prefer the canned to the bottled.

But don't tell the testers at Cook's Illustrated.

Was watching an episode of America's Test Kitchen today and they had the results of their store-bought salsa tasting.

Contenders: Old El Paso, Taco Bell Thick and Chunky, Santa Barbara and Herdez Salsa Casera.

Results:

1. Santa Barbara (this is a regional refrigerated brand). The freshest tasting.

2. Old El Paso. Fairly high scoring.

3. Taco Bell. Too sweet. Not what most would call salsa.

4. Herdez. Too watery, little flavor.

...I thought I had an appetite for destruction but all I wanted was a club sandwich.

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My favorites are Sriracha, Marie Sharp's, Bufalo chipotle & jalapeno, Cholula, & my current favorite-Aji Amazona, a Colombian sauce.  I also like the Chile Man's hot sauces, but my favorites are his ginger & jerk marinades.  I love Pickapepper, too, but I wouldn't call it a hot sauce.

I have to second you on your favs as my fav hot sauces as well. I had Marie Sharps Fiery Hot for the first time way back in '94 and have been addicted to it ever since. Its heat is punchy but also has flavor by the way of the carrot juice base. Got ta' luv it! Bufalo Chipotle is awesome with its intense somkey and vinegar tang. Have to add another sauce to the list, Pain 100%. Yes it has a stupid name, like a lot of hot sauces out there but Pain 100% has heat and flavor and is great on chicken and steak or other grilled items.

-Hobbes-

Edited by Hobbes (log)
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i need a good recipe for hot sauce, any ideas? i have a batch of superhot spanish pilpil peppers that i just picked in the garden. i normally make these into Libyan/Moroccan Harissa, but id like to try something different. all suggestions welcome

I will second the opinions above on a couple of things. I like Texas Pete for everyday mild cayenne sauce, great on things like barbecue and I jazz up my barbecue sauces with it for use at the end of cooking.

From Half moon Bay trading company, I love the golden habanero pepper sauce.

But. making your own is easy and fun. I do it in late summer/early fall with peppers from the garden. Here's a great source for chile pepper plants of MANY varieties, I've had great luck with their plants the last 3 years. http://www.chileplants.com/default.asp

I use this basic recipe for hot sauce I want to keep. If you're going to eat it right away, it doesnt need as much vinegar, salt or cooking time. Quantities are fluid according to your taste, heat resistance, and pepper availability. Basically, you can't make it wrong.

Clean your peppers. I've been using a variety of fresh peppers including pablano, cayenne, jalapeno, and even a shot of sweet peppers. I don't use a lot of the really hot ones, because most of my friends and family don't want it killer hot. The more thoroughly you remove the seeds and membranes, the milder your sauce will be. I like to get the seeds out as they can be bitter, but leave most of the membrane in for heat. Use disposable rubber gloves when you do this or you'll be sorry when you scratch your eye or take a pee! Put some vegetable oil in a pan and saute garlic and onions. Add the peppers and anything else you like. I always add some diced carrot, sometimes some tomato. Many people like various kinds of fruit or cucumber, have fun. Saute all this stuff until tender. Add a mixture of 2/3 white vinegar and 1/3 water until veggies are not quite covered. Give it a good shot of salt. Cover and simmer for an hour or so. After 45 minutes, add a big shot of chopped cilantro (I love this). Take off heat and let cool. Put it in a blender or food processor and puree to desired consistency. If it's too thick, add some more of the vinegar/water mixture. Adjust for salt and cilantro. You want it to be thin enough to pour/shake out of the bottle.

I have bought bottles at kitchen supply store and I save empty hot sauce bottles that I've bought with sauce in them. Wash the botles and lids well and then boil the bottles for ten minutes or so to sanitize. Funnel the sauce in to the bottles and cap. I'm still enjoying the stuff i made in September/October now in February and I don't refrigerate it. Refrigerating would probably be safer!

So, my own are my favorites. I pick the peppers right when I'm ready to make the sauce and it maintains that great fruity/hot flavor that you only get from peppers right off the vine. Looking forward to trying some new twists with this year's pepper crop.

And finally, I don't care for Dave's insanity. They distill the pepper mixture to intensify the heat so it's not a heat that occurs naturally in any single pepper. And you can ruin a whole pot of good food with just a little of that distilled fire.

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  • 1 month later...

Just returned from the Caribbean (St Martin) and while eating at a local barbecue stand they had on the tables some of this hot sauce. It's absolutely some of the best stuff I've ever tasted!! Called Matouks, it was very, very hot, but also had a terrific flavor, was highly addicting. I've even order a couple of bottles of this stuff online, I can't get enough of it!!

Anybody else ever tasteed Matouk's? I think it's made in Trinidad. I think the key ingredient is Papayas.

Edited by Bux (log)
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I'm a chilehead and can handle it pretty hot.

That being said, as Jason suggested, there is a point of heat beyond which only the stupid (or those without tastebuds) roam. That's a territory I don't wish to visit.

I was given a bottle of Dave's Insanity Sauce and thought, "Yeah, sure, like it's going to be that hot." I put what I considered to be a normal dash of the sauce on a taco and promptly got the hiccups for the next half hour.

For the non-chileheads out there, when eating spicy food, hiccups are your body's way of saying "What the F$@# are you trying to do to me?!?!"

Needless to say, I "cut" the Insanity sauce now and haven't had a repeat episode since.

6 million Scoville units? Does the military know about this stuff?

 

“Peter: Oh my god, Brian, there's a message in my Alphabits. It says, 'Oooooo.'

Brian: Peter, those are Cheerios.”

– From Fox TV’s “Family Guy”

 

Tim Oliver

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I have prepared and made a unusual hot sauce for over 15 years that we called "Insidious" but our staff called "Sudden Death" decorating each bottle with a "Skull & Cross Bones" as warning. It took us several years to perfect that recipe and we used this as a base in our "Honolulu Restaurant" named "Lisboa" where we featured foods from Spain, Portugal, Africa, Asia, India, Goa, South America and Mexico serving some of the woulds spiciest and hottest dishes. This came about because of the Portuguese Black Ships that introduced the Chili Pepper to Africa [Piri-Piri], Asia, India and most of Europe while trying to control the Spice Markets.

We served this adapted to star ratings as one star. three stars [Tabasco hot], five stars, eight stars and ten stars. We had a Professor friend do a Scoville Testing of the ten star sauce our hottest after it was shaken and mixed and it varied from 160,000 to 215,000 depending on the amount of oil when tested.

We never served anyone a ten star sauce nor served any of the others as a condiment as it was always Incorporated into a finished dish to enhance the flavor and heat according to what our customers had previously proved that they were able to eat and enjoy. The first time any patron requested something hotter then three stars we would not serve then until they at least consumed a appetizer or entry at the three star level unless they were from some background that we were comfortable it was customary to enjoy fiery hot foods.

The sauces were really insidious as it took sometime after eating before the heat level insidiously sneak up to your taste buds, generally casing a running nose, tearing and sometimes swelling of your lips but generally it seemed to be effective enough that we had many repeat customers from all over the world.

During the week before final exams at the University of Hawaii we would get orders for several dozen of our prize winning "Under the Skin" Chicken Five Stars from Asian and Indian Students who would steam the Chicken over Rice in Rice Cookers where it would be kept warm as a get up and keep going meal while studying overnight.

Other well known travelers who owned Islands in Tahiti, Fiji and other areas would bring three star and five star dishes for the balance of their journey from Honolulu to their Island homes to become accumulated to the spicy foods.

I most recently made a base now being used in Israel for a Slow Smoked Beef Brisket that has become very popular. About only one out of twenty customers who thought that they enjoyed fiery hot foods requested hotter then three stars.

It is easy to just make something hot, but much more fun to prepare something that while being hot enhances and increases your enjoyment of whatever your eating. Still I always wonder about the consumers feelings the following day.

Irwin :wub:

Edited by wesza (log)

I don't say that I do. But don't let it get around that I don't.

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Most of the chilehead fanatic I know consider them to be pretty much just a diversion.  Entertainment if you will.  The main problem is that if one subtracts the not insubstantial heat, one is left with a flavor that has been likened to singed cat hair.  About the only versions I've had that had decent flavor were made by Jim Campell at Mild to Wild chile pepper company.  He grows his own chiles and mixes his own sauces.  My favorite condiment of his is the powdered apple smoked red savina habanero.

Jim's products are awesome. The flavor is exceptional and I agree about the habanero powder.

I have my "I survived "The Bread" pin here on my desk from a hotluck in which we had a loaf to sample.

Incredible.

I like some heat but not the extremes. I like flavor as well as heat. The manzano or rocoto peppers are my favorites for using fresh because of their fruity flavor. I save the seeds, dry and grind them to add to some rubs as they have a different but interesting flavor and being black, are easy to keep track of. They also grow very nicely here in the desert.

"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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There used to be a store in Halifax that specialized in chili-derived condiments, sauces, and rubs of all kinds. They did carry one brand of the mega-hots (the mfr insisted that a waiver be signed by any purchaser). It was not intended to be consumed *on* food, in fact it would cause a rather nasty chemical burn if you got it on you. It was intended to be measured, with an eyedropper, into rather large quantities of food. The idea, as I understood it, was to allow the heat level to be "customized" with minimal impact on the flavour profile.

It seems a valid notion to me.

Menton, there are a few different Matouk's being sold here in Canada. I've had that green one you illustrate, and it is a doozy! I haven't had it for a few years, and I was less attuned to hot foods at the time, but I vividly remember that combination of heat and intense fruitiness. I ate it on just about everything for a month or so until the bottle was gone. Fine stuff.

“Who loves a garden, loves a greenhouse too.” - William Cowper, The Task, Book Three

 

"Not knowing the scope of your own ignorance is part of the human condition...The first rule of the Dunning-Kruger club is you don’t know you’re a member of the Dunning-Kruger club.” - psychologist David Dunning

 

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Just returned from the Caribbean (St Martin) and while eating at a local barbecue stand they had on the tables some of this hot sauce. It's absolutely some of the best stuff I've ever tasted!! Called Matouks, it was very, very hot, but also had a terrific flavor, was highly addicting. I've even order a couple of bottles of this stuff online, I can't get enough of it!!

Anybody else ever tasteed Matouk's? I think it's made in Trinidad. I think the key ingredient is papaya fruit.

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No one has mentioned the Rhino hot sauces. Maybe a little more expensive, but the flavor is so good. They offer a couple of different heat levels but I think that I've only had the hottest one, labeled 'Extra hot'. African peppers and plenty of garlic are what make it great.

Scorned Woman and Inner Beauty are favorites as well. I like a sauce that is very hot while also offering a strong flavor profile. Mix a little into soup for heat or pour a lot over rice and beans for seasoning.

Tabasco is a good standby. It's a consistent flavor. Someone else said that it's tasted the same for 40 years. You can't beat a drop or two on a freshly shucked oyster.

Dave's is for frat boys.

If we aren't supposed to eat animals, why are they made of meat?

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Just returned from the Caribbean (St Martin) and while eating at a local barbecue stand they had on the tables some of this hot sauce. It's absolutely some of the best stuff I've ever tasted!! Called Matouks, it was very, very hot, but also had a terrific flavor, was highly addicting. I've even ordered a couple of bottles of this stuff online, I can't get enough of this stuff!!

Anybody else ever tasteed Matouk's? I think it's made in Trinidad. I think the key ingredient is Papaya fruit.

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I think Matouk's may also have mango in it. I love the stuff and was introduced to it in a local Jamaican restaurant. Most stores that sell Jamaican or West Indian groceries will stock it. I think there may be two varieties - my favorite is the one that's thicker and sort of green in color with flecks of red and orange. Looks almost like a chutney but it's fiery. Very good on egg dishes and also in rice 'n peas but one has to mix it in thoroughly to avoid getting blasted by the heat.

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Matouk's is a standard sauce-they have a few variations on the theme-I can think of Calypso as well.

In Trinidad itself Matouk's isn't all that popular-I saw many small almost homemade sauces on restaurant table/for sale.

As to

actually ive been  to  the  mcelhaney  tabasco  company and took the tour  and  yes  they do  keep to the  strict  standards quoted in your  piece...and even though  you cant  really verify it  for yourself..one  must  think about  all the  bad weather  that  louisiana  has  gone through  over the years  with the  hurricanes  since  the  company was  founded...and  then ask yourself if in that time  has there ever been any shortage  of  their  tabasco products?

One thing they never mentioned during that Tour was that Tobasco Peppers suffer from Tobacco Mosaic disease and aren't produced in any great quantity in any one place for very long without the disease reappearing.

So the production has shifted from place to place-last I checked it was Honduras but Tobacco Mosaic had appeared there to so who knows where the Peppers are coming from now-not Louisiana I can tell you that.

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Huy Fong Foods, with its humble beginnings in Los Angeles, California in 1980, has grown to become one of the leaders in the Asian hot sauce market.

Their sriracha hot sauce, aside from harissa, is the only other hot sauce I like. Most other hot sauces make me gag. I can't stand it. But sriracha!

I see it everywhere, it's in every kind of Asian grocery store in LA, most major supermarkets. There is something about the flavor that translates across cultures. I mix it with mayonaisse for a quick spicy aioli. I think that it's become a staple item in Asian pantries around here, it's almost as common as soy sauce. In downtown LA I've seen hispanic workers buy a bowl of Korean instant noodles, squeeze some lime juice and sriracha into it.

Of course, but I'm an individual, not a large corporation. In order to control my own quality, I don't have to depend on hundreds of employees.

Are you thinking of getting into the hot sauce business? :biggrin:

I can be reached via email chefzadi AT gmail DOT com

Dean of Culinary Arts

Ecole de Cuisine: Culinary School Los Angeles

http://ecolecuisine.com

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Just got this goofy email by the guys at Blair's (Extremefood.com)

Hello, Well After lots and lots of work -  Blair's(me) 16 million Reserve is nearing completion (Close enough for pre-orders to happen now)... To understand how difficult this was to produce, you have to think about this as an experiment - A long Time consuming experiment, that has been my goal since I learned who Mr.Scoville was... So yes since 1989 it has been my mission to do this - A Crazy mission some would say - But you gotta follow your passion.....

NO ONE HAS EVER PRODUCED ANYTHING LIKE THIS - Pure Capsaicin. Do ya get it??? JUST THE PURE CRYSTALS....NOTHING ELSE........ Here is what you get - one 1ml Nalgene Pharmaceutical grade vial. Each Hand filled by volume. The vial is then placed into my Famous Reserve bottle that has been filled with some protective packing so the vial will stay in place, Then I seal The English bottle with a Food grade silicon cork to ensure no air gets in..... Next It's topped off with White and Gold Resin.... (your Reserve collection will look great with this very unique addition)....

You my friend, will be the  very proud owner of The most exclusive Product Ever Produced....Now accepting pre-orders..... Expect Shipping to begin on or About April 18th 2005.....The VIP Pre-order Price is only $99(You will never see this price again). THIS IS A SPECIAL MEMBER PRE-ORDER PRICE ONLY VALID UNTIL 3-24-05... Then the next Pre-order price will be in effect after that and continue on up. You know how it works..By the time this Reserve is on the market you will have seen at least a 50% increase in value..I cannot wait for you to have my new 16 million in your display.....Thank you my fellow Chilihead and as always Feel Alive  Blair

PS: I do not know the amount I am going to be able to produce - it is rather complex- my brick of 16 million has some useable and some not so I do not have an exact yield until I am done (I told you this was experimental) One thing I can assure you is the most that will be made is 999 even if I have enough for more - - The truth of the matter is, it could only be 400 Reserves ....I really do not know - -This makes it more fun for both of us...Again all my best ...

I mean, nobody in their right mind would want to use pure refined capsaicin (16 Million scoville units!) on food... I'm not sure I totally understand the concept of "collector" hot sauces that nobody wants to eat?

Jason Perlow

Co-Founder, The Society for Culinary Arts & Letters

offthebroiler.com - Food Blog | View my food photos on Instagram

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...nobody in their right mind would want to use pure refined capsaicin (16 Million scoville units!) on food... I'm not sure I totally understand the concept of "collector" hot sauces that nobody wants to eat?

so by definition, is that as high as the Scoville unit chart goes, pure capsaicin?

could it even be used in trace quantities, or not?

if not then it's an Evel Knievel (stunt) food that's not even meant to be consumed, no?! :blink:

"The cure for anything is salt water: sweat, tears, or the ocean."

--Isak Dinesen

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as an avowed hot sauce conoisseur i am horrified, yes, horrified, at this latest silliness!!!!!

Hot sauce that is 1. not meant to be consumed, 2. will burn through your stomach lining and onto the floor, and 3. is designed as a collectible???????

i thought this was egullet, not e-hummel-figurines.com!

i say force the producer of this stuff to drink his own medicine, and be banished to watching reruns of the 'world of collectibles' on community access tv

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