At the wedding I was talking to Chef (Roland) and telling him how I had about forty habeñeros in my garden at home. He said, Monsieur, preserve them. But of course I meant to preserve them! I preserve everything, chef. The question was how and what?
Did I want to let them all ripen (they turn orange), or did I want to do something with them green? Well, since time is a-flyin, I decided that today would be the day to preserve them. Six Motels is coming soon, and I don't have time to dick around. I scanned some hot sauce recipes on the web. I found a cool one. There are two phases, and the entire process takes at least a week.
The recipe I found said Don't use habeñeros! Too spicy. But that's what I had. Most of my jalepeños have already been canned. I canned them before flying out to that wedding. Did them with carrots and onions, Mexican style.
To make the hot sauce less hot, I cut all the habeñeros in half and carefully removed their seeds and ribs with the tip of a potato peeler. The seeds and ribs contain most of the capsicum. It's still gonna be wicked hot. Note: be careful not to touch any of your mucus membranes until you have thoroughly washed your hands with soap and cold water.
The recipe said to add 3 TBS of kosher salt to 1 lb. of hot peppers. I don't have a scale, but I thought I had about a pound of peppers. I only used 2 TBS. 3 TBS seemed excessive. I also felt confident that 2 would be enough, perhaps even too much. I also added one clove of garlic, sliced.
This is what it looked like after I ran the food processor for about a minute. Just standing over it made my eyes sting. Plus, every now and again when I was cleaning out the ribs, little squirts of habeñero juice shot onto my face. I kinda liked that. Smelled amazing.
I transferred the young hot sauce to a bowl and took this picture of it. Then I transferred it to a 1 pint, wide-mouth mason jar to ferment.
The recipe I found said I should set the processed hot peppers to a cool and dark place to "ripen." Ripen? Ah, yes, my old friend fermentation, my old pals the lactobacillis bacteria. This habeñero mash will ferment for a few days, after which I'll add some vinegar. Come back then to see phase two and to learn more about Six Motels. Thanks.