I’ve already written about my passion for, nay, addiction to spicy foods. My long-cauterized palate is apparently incapable of tasting anything unless it’s got a capsaicin kick.
Subsequently, there’s always a wealth of hot sauces in the house. Sometimes I reach for the clean vinegar-based heat of Tabasco; other times it’ll be a dollop of spicy salsa from our local taqueria that is like pure crack to me. But most often of all, Sriracha is my go-to hot stuff.
It’s practically perfect in every way, with clean, sharp heat, good body and a faint sweetness to back it up and create a longer finish. For ages, I assumed this magically-balanced sauce must employ some mysterious Asian ingredient that makes the whole thing sing. And yet, on the rooster-adorned bottle, the ingredients are just chili, sugar, salt, garlic and distilled vinegar. Oh yeah, plus potassium sorbate, sodium bisulfite and xanthan gum. I could live without those last few ingredients.
It turns out that those first five ingredients really are all that are needed to make a flavorful, almost shockingly red sauce that stands up to the stuff in the bottle. Best of all, you can tweak the heat up or down with the selection of peppers. I used a mix of red jalapeño, habanero and red padron peppers; if you want to tone it down a bit, feel free to include sweet red peppers in the mix as well.
Sriracha-Style Hot Sauce
Total time: 24 hours
Prep: 30 minutes
Inactive: 23 hours
Cook: 20 minutes plus 10 minutes
Continue Reading How to Make Your Own Hot Sauce
Aside from judging pickles and standing in line for hours at various street food vendors at last year’s Bay Area Eat Real Fest, I also attended the adjunct Eat Real Lit Fest. It featured a wide range of brainy foodies alternately reading from their works or extemporizing on the topic of street food and other burgeoning trends.
One of the highlights was local chef Richie Nakano. Cribbing from his notes and brandishing his inked arms, he regaled the audience with the saga of how he left a stable kitchen gig to launch his own street food business, Hapa Ramen. On opening day, exhausted from an all-night noodle-making session, faced with missing valves and other logistical problems, Richie was exasperated. But he persevered and went on to become one of the hottest street vendors in the city of San Francisco, as well as one of my more regular lunch treats on market days at the Ferry Building.
Richie’s ramen is worth the trip, for sure, but should you find yourself at his booth, don’t forget to order the extra carton of kimchi and pickles for just a buck more. Richie uses seasonal veggies for the pickles, which rest on a bed of salty-spicy kimchi.
Continue Reading DIY Kimchi Recipe
I’m probably not the first person to admit I’m more interested in Game Day Food than the Big Game itself. When people get together with a bevy of fingers foods, you can certainly count on me showing up. It’s probably one of my favorite ways to eat — a little bit of this, a little bit of that. And there will be dips, crunchy salty things, plenty of icy beer.
This year I’ll be making my Spicy Sweet Potato and Chicken Fritters. Warm sweet potatoes become the base for this savory fritter that’s stuffed with chicken and then dipped in a spicy sour cream and sriracha combo. And did I mention the fritters have a delightful crunch thanks to panko breadcrumbs? I love these things, they’re hot and sweet and the fontina béchamel isn’t anything to laugh at either. Perfect game day snacking.
Continue Reading Ultimate App: Spicy Sweet Potato and Chicken Fritters
Roger Mooking and Aarón Sanchez bring on the heat. Can they handle it?
When it comes to spicy food, people all over the world love to play with fire. Cooking Channel’s Roger Mooking and Aarón Sanchez are taking it to a whole new level.
From the spiciest food trucks (in Austin, TX!) to Indian dosas with fiery habanero chiles in San Fran, these two Heat Seekers are tearing up the country, and tasting it all.
See what sets their mouths ablaze in Heat Seekers, tonight at 8pm ET on Cooking Channel.
Don't miss Food(ogrophy) Hot and Spicy
As a huge food nerd, I’m always up for an hour of Mo Rocca‘s in-depth dissection of fascinating food themes in Food(ography). In fact, I occasionally take notes. Here are five cool things I learned from the first six minutes of yesterday evening’s episode of Food(ography), Hot and Spicy:
Continue Reading 5 Fiery Facts from Food(ography)
Levi Roots getting spicy - Caribbean Food Made Easy
July is going to be a hot one on Cooking Channel with the debut of six shows – that span from Vietnam to India to the islands. Meet Levi, the host of Caribbean Food Made Easy…
Continue Reading Caribbean Food Made Easy: 5 Things