Sunday, 25 September 2016

Chilli Oil

Sometimes I have guests who do not eat chilli. A little drizzle of this will lift a dish without the need for chilli in the cooking. Simply pour some of oil over an individual meal, a few drops to start with so that you get the amount of chilli you like.

I make a big bottle once a year, allow it to infuse for twelve months or so, then strain and use the oil over the next year. The process is very simple. The jar should be packed with chillies so choose a jar that is the appropriate size. I often make smaller jars so that I can do a taste testing throughout the year.

How to

Sterilise the jar(s)

Wash and dry the chillies

Blanch the chillies in a mixture of boiling vinegar and salt. I use 1 1/2 cups vinegar and two tablespoons of coarse salt. 

Blanch the chillies in batches, remove from the vinegar solution and place on paper towel.

Pack the blanched chillies into the sterilised jar. Pour olive or grape seed oil into the jar making sure that the chillies are fully submerged. Seal the jar and store in a cool cupboard. Over time the colour of the oil will gradually become pale red and develop a hot chilli flavour. This takes a long time, at least twelve months.

Strain the oil into a sterilised bottle.

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