DIY hot sauce is awesome. It’s also incredibly satisfying to create something that you thought you could only have if you buy it in store, not to mention the fact that it’s surprisingly easy. It’s not an exact science, and you can adjust your hot sauce to suit your tastes. I made two kinds; a jalapeño and habanero pepper sauce with lime, cilantro, and garlic, and a bright red chipotle, ancho chile and red cayenne sauce. Both are working with a Mexican flavour profile, but there’s an insanely wide range of that you can experiment with- caribbean hot sauces are wonderful, and everyone knows the power of Sriracha and other asian-style hot sauces.

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I’ll be giving you a basic framework to go off, with easy-to-find chiles and basic techniques. It’s not a bad idea to wear some latex or rubber gloves through the process- my hands are still burning and pulsing from my afternoon of hot sauce experimentation. Have a glass of milk nearby for when you’re tasting to adjust for seasoning!

In the spirit of Christmas (and for ease), I’ll call the jalapeño-habanero-lime-cilantro-garlic one Green, and the ancho-chipotle-cayenne one Red. Because we’re not using preservatives, please note that these sauces don’t keep very long- only up to a couple of weeks in the fridge. So use them up!