A Hot Shot Dipping Sauce
Fire up fresh chiles, garlic and vinegar for a powerful hot sauce.
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Dear Lynne: I need a hot sauce to knock my boyfriend's socks off. But please make it easy. - Lover in Lake Tahoe
Dear Lover: This dipping sauce is as simple as it gets. Nippy, bright Hot Shot Sauce is especially fine with sweet things like grilled yams, onions, corn, ripe melon, spring rolls and barbecue. Put some in mayonnaise, over fish, on meats and in stir-fries. You get the idea.
You need chiles (sidestep habaneros and Scotch Bonnets as they numb taste buds), cider vinegar, salt, a blender and a glass jar washed in very hot water. For safe preserving, select a cider vinegar with at least 5 percent acidity. Higher is even better. Store the sauce in the refrigerator for no more than a week. Its brightness fades after that.
Lynne's Hot Shot Dipping Sauce
2 fresh red Cayenne chiles
2 fresh orange Serrano chiles
1/4 teaspoon salt, or to taste
1 clove garlic
cider vinegar to cover (about 1-1/4 cups)
Wearing plastic gloves, cut stems away from the chiles. Coarsely chop chiles. Put in blender, seeds and all. Add salt, garlic and vinegar to cover by about 1/4-inch. Blend until pureed. Pour into the clean jar and refrigerate.
Use ground chiles and all, or solely the liquid.
Caution: Chiles sting. Handle them with care. When working with chiles, wear plastic gloves, and wash hands and utensils with hot soapy water. Never touch your face or any other part of your body after you've handled chiles until you've thoroughly washed your hands.
Makes about 1-1/2 cups
Lynne Rossetto Kasper is the host of national radio show "The Splendid Table."
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