Fermented Hot Sauces

Rockydoc

Well-Known Member
Boy Rocky, I just looked up cow horn peppers and they sound about ideal for a guy like me who likes a little heat but has to draw the line at a judicious use of habanero salsas.

What do cow horns require as far as climate to grow them?
I can only say for sure that they grow well in northwestern Florida.
I would think that they would grow any where in the US in the summer.
I have a jalapeño and a Serrano that I have had for 3 seasons that I keep indoors over the winter. They have cross pollinated so that now they produce the same fruit on each plant.
I have over-wintered my Thai pepper plant as well.
I grow these plant on my back porch/ patio.
 
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Rockydoc

Well-Known Member
I would like to see a recipes section too. It is interesting to me to read what others around the country like to cook and eat.

I think I might try Rockydoc's fermented pepper sauce. Our pepper plants have been going crazy this year, especially the habaneros. My wife took a big bag full of habaneros to work to get rid of some of them. During the winter she buys them at the grocery store and they are tiny, but the homegrown versions are as big as my Serrano's.

View attachment 22249


I normally just cook the habaneros in vinegar on the stove and then strain and puree them adding back enough vinegar to make a sauce. But the fermented sauce sounds very interesting.

We make kimchee and sauerkraut all the time, so I already have the vents made for quart jars. My mouth is watering already at the thought of the combo of fermented habaneros and salt.

I have a pepper plant that produces peppers that look similar to the cowhorn. They were marked as peppers used for making the red pepper flakes like you sprinkle on at the Pizza place. So I dehydrated them and ground them up. Boy howdy are they hot! I was a bit heavy handed the first time I put some on my fried eggs, expecting them to be much milder. They do taste good though.
I made a batch of home grown fermented habañero hot sauce once, but never tasted it. I just was too afraid of it. I had tried a habañero hot sauce in a restaurant once before and one drop applied with a toothpick ruined the whole dish for me. Just too hot.

I have an idea about a fermented hot sauce made with mild bell peppers for the flavor and only one habanero for the heat and their unique taste. I just may do it later this season. I have some mild peppers that aren’t ripe yet and I could buy a habanero at the grocery store.

I also think we should have a section for recipes etc.

Rocky
 
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david s

Active Member
One of the fellows at work has a fascination with very hot hot sauces. He's always looking for the hottest. Like Rockydoc when I try these sauces I use a wooden toothpick and try for the smallest possible drop of sauce. It's surprising how many of these sauces don't have a good flavor. Most are seriously hot and have cute names but taste terrible. It's rare to find one that would add anything but heat to a dish. Personally I tend to go for a sauce that adds flavor, heat is a nice secondary addition. Rockydoc has the right idea search for flavor, heat by itself isn't hard to come by.
 

Rally

NC Minnesota
I tend to agree with Doc, too hot ruins the meal, even in a stir fry. My wife uses peppers in some dishes and has found some peppers just too hot for our taste. Don't mind a little heat but a steady burn that ruins every other flavor isn't my idea of a meal.
 

hporter

Member
Rockydoc,

I followed your lead tonight. I processed all the peppers I had in the fridge, and while I was chopping and stemming them, my wife went out and picked all the ripe peppers in the garden. We ended up with 550 grams of pureed peppers. So I added 55 grams of salt, stirred it up and put it in a canning jar with a one way valve top.

IMG_1534.JPGIMG_1535.JPGIMG_1536.JPG


I am excited to see how this will all turn out in a few months.

I understand the folks who don't like peppers that are too hot. My wife for the past 20 years has made me plant sweet pepper varieties along with my hot peppers. But in the last year, she has grown to appreciate the wonderful flavor of habanero's. She puts them in her homemade bone broth that she makes every week, and in her veggies that she cooks for her dinners.

She is fully converted to the "hot" side now. But like everything in life, in moderation.

Thanks for starting this thread. It gave me a good use for all the peppers we have accumulated from the garden this week!
 

Tom

Active Member
That fermented cowhorn sounds a lot like sambal oelek.
I like chilis, but not all taste good. For my taste, habaneros are borderline too hot, but I dislike the taste of them. I used to like jalapenos, but buying them is a crapshoot, sometimes no heat and very little flavor. So far, I've not found this problem with serrano peppers.
I used to make a cooked "blackened" salsa that was pretty good. Grill the peppers and tomatoes as though you were going to peel them, but leave the scorched skins on. Mash them up and simmer with some cilantro and salt. Dang good salsa!
Another nice thing is jalapeno jelly, great on toast.
 
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Rockydoc

Well-Known Member
Rockydoc,

I followed your lead tonight. I processed all the peppers I had in the fridge, and while I was chopping and stemming them, my wife went out and picked all the ripe peppers in the garden. We ended up with 550 grams of pureed peppers. So I added 55 grams of salt, stirred it up and put it in a canning jar with a one way valve top.

View attachment 22251View attachment 22252View attachment 22253


I am excited to see how this will all turn out in a few months.

I understand the folks who don't like peppers that are too hot. My wife for the past 20 years has made me plant sweet pepper varieties along with my hot peppers. But in the last year, she has grown to appreciate the wonderful flavor of habanero's. She puts them in her homemade bone broth that she makes every week, and in her veggies that she cooks for her dinners.

She is fully converted to the "hot" side now. But like everything in life, in moderation.

Thanks for starting this thread. It gave me a good use for all the peppers we have accumulated from the garden this week!
Please tell us what all those peppers are. It looks like an interesting combo.
 

hporter

Member
Rockydoc,

Mostly they are habaneros, but the other peppers are:

-Serrano
-Cajun Bell
-Friarello Sweet
-Sport Pepper
-Crushed Red Pepper

I used to order all my pepper plants from ChiliPlants.com. They ship them as live plants, but back when I used to order from them they couldn't ship until April. And you had a large (for me) minimum quantity to order. When my wife's step father was still alive, we used to split an order. And with our kids grown and gone with their own families now, the wife and I can't eat that many peppers ourselves.

In Houston, you can usually get the peppers in the ground by March 1st, and even earlier if you feel lucky. Some years a healthy pepper plant can over winter and you get fresh chili's very early in the season. Of course this year we had our "big for Texas" freeze blow through in February, but normally February is the last month you will see freezing temperatures around here.

So for the past few years we have been buying peppers from the big box stores. The quality is not as good as ordering from a specialist like chiliplants.com, but we can buy only what we need and earlier in the year. That is why the Sport Pepper and Crushed Red Pepper I listed above are generic. They came from Walmart or Lowes. The crushed red pepper was listed as the type used in crushed red pepper flakes, and the sport pepper was listed as the type you pickle and put on a Chicago style hot dog.

The wife did pickle the sport peppers, and they were tasty. And as I mentioned before, I did dehydrate and crush the other peppers for a seasoning sprinkle. They ended up being hotter than your average crushed red pepper flakes, but the flavor is good and I even ate some on my eggs this morning.

I wasn't able to find any chili pequin pepper plants in the stores this year, which is unfortunate as they are among my favorites and would have been good in this sauce. Chili pequin peppers thrive in our climate, the only problem is the birds will get every one of them if you don't stay on top of them when they turn red.

So now I will keep an eye out for bubbles in my mason jar to see when my peppers start fermenting.

I think for my next experiment, I will try smoking some of the sport peppers over hickory wood, and then finish them in the food dehydrator. Having the pepper flake spice is kind of handy when preparing meat for the grill.
 

Rockydoc

Well-Known Member
I used to do a Fermented ( 3 Months) Thai hot sauce...However I don't grow them any more. They were just too hot
Most of my fermented hot sauces now from Aleppo Chillies

I like to do "lacto-ferment" for 3 months...Gives them a very earthy flavor. I use them as is, and also add a vinegar garlic mix to a few bottles!
One of my favorites is the Aleppo / Urfa Bieber chili mix! Fermented 3 months this is a real gourmet blend
JW, did you grow your own Aleppo chilies? I never see them fresh in groceries here in NW FL.
 

Rockydoc

Well-Known Member
Rockydoc,

Mostly they are habaneros, but the other peppers are:

-Serrano
-Cajun Bell
-Friarello Sweet
-Sport Pepper
-Crushed Red Pepper

I used to order all my pepper plants from ChiliPlants.com. They ship them as live plants, but back when I used to order from them they couldn't ship until April. And you had a large (for me) minimum quantity to order. When my wife's step father was still alive, we used to split an order. And with our kids grown and gone with their own families now, the wife and I can't eat that many peppers ourselves.

In Houston, you can usually get the peppers in the ground by March 1st, and even earlier if you feel lucky. Some years a healthy pepper plant can over winter and you get fresh chili's very early in the season. Of course this year we had our "big for Texas" freeze blow through in February, but normally February is the last month you will see freezing temperatures around here.

So for the past few years we have been buying peppers from the big box stores. The quality is not as good as ordering from a specialist like chiliplants.com, but we can buy only what we need and earlier in the year. That is why the Sport Pepper and Crushed Red Pepper I listed above are generic. They came from Walmart or Lowes. The crushed red pepper was listed as the type used in crushed red pepper flakes, and the sport pepper was listed as the type you pickle and put on a Chicago style hot dog.

The wife did pickle the sport peppers, and they were tasty. And as I mentioned before, I did dehydrate and crush the other peppers for a seasoning sprinkle. They ended up being hotter than your average crushed red pepper flakes, but the flavor is good and I even ate some on my eggs this morning.

I wasn't able to find any chili pequin pepper plants in the stores this year, which is unfortunate as they are among my favorites and would have been good in this sauce. Chili pequin peppers thrive in our climate, the only problem is the birds will get every one of them if you don't stay on top of them when they turn red.

So now I will keep an eye out for bubbles in my mason jar to see when my peppers start fermenting.

I think for my next experiment, I will try smoking some of the sport peppers over hickory wood, and then finish them in the food dehydrator. Having the pepper flake spice is kind of handy when preparing meat for the grill.
That big red one at the top looks like a cow horn. What do you call that one?
 

hporter

Member
Rockydoc,

That was the one labeled as a crushed red pepper. The one in my photo is smaller than most that I have harvested, though these peppers are not as big as the ones in your photograph. Also these are pretty hot.

I added some of the home pickled sport peppers to our salads tonight. They will light you up a bit, but have a very interesting flavor.

I do enjoy the hot peppers. When I was a younger man I could eat a whole habanero chopped into a meal. But it hurts my stomach a little too much now, and I am more interested in the flavor they impart than the heat. But I have to admit, the heat is still a bit addictive.

My brother inlaw used to enjoy buying me those hot sauces in the bottle that were "the worlds hottest". Some were so hot that you couldn't even taste what the pepper's flavors were, it just plain hurt to put them in your mouth. I draw the line at those.
 

fiver

Well-Known Member
de-hydrating and crushing peppers works very well, you also have the option of de seeding [some of]them to control the heat-flavor ratio.

I usually do some sort of Thai or oriental pepper and crush them up after drying.
we have had a good year for growing things.
we skipped the late frost at the end of June, so I probably could have got some pepper plants in other than the oriental ornamental that get hotter the closer to white they get.
oh well I'm gonna get some egg plants this year so I'm happy with anything else that comes along.
 

358156 hp

Well-Known Member
I just tried some of the jalapenos from my garden. I must have grabbed a flat of the tame ones because these are just slightly hotter than bell peppers. I think they might be good candidates for fermenting, so I'll start that process here soon. I'll add a couple of Seranos, Anaheims, or Poblanos to spice it up a bit.
 

Rockydoc

Well-Known Member
That fermented cowhorn sounds a lot like sambal oelek.
I like chilis, but not all taste good. For my taste, habaneros are borderline too hot, but I dislike the taste of them. I used to like jalapenos, but buying them is a crapshoot, sometimes no heat and very little flavor. So far, I've not found this problem with serrano peppers.
I used to make a cooked "blackened" salsa that was pretty good. Grill the peppers and tomatoes as though you were going to peel them, but leave the scorched skins on. Mash them up and simmer with some cilantro and salt. Dang good salsa!
Another nice thing is jalapeno jelly, great on toast.
All of the sambal oelek I have seen is a paste. I will add vinegar to my pepper mash after fermentation and will have a liquid sauce.
I guess I could add vinegar to sambal oelek and blend it to the sauce consistency.
we skipped the late frost at the end of June,
Where do you get frost at the end of June?
 

fiver

Well-Known Member
in the highlands of South Eastern Idaho.

believe it or not we had a storm warning and some hail today.
 

Rockydoc

Well-Known Member
In the summertime we get storm warnings nearly every day. They are usually marine warnings, high seas and winds, and thunderstorms for boaters. I live near the Gulf of Mexico. But no frost. It is over 90 degrees every day.
 
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358156 hp

Well-Known Member
I've raised habaneros in the past. My favorite use for them was to add heat to chili during the winter. I would make my normal chili, then let a couple of dried habaneros steep in it for a couple of hours before I fished them out and discarded them. This worked really well.
 

hporter

Member
358156 hp,

Did you dry your habanero's by hanging them - or in a dehydrator?

My wife makes fresh bone broth in our instant pot every week and she usually throws 5 or 6 fresh habanero's into the pot with the bones and veggies. Our habanero plants are producing far more peppers than we can eat and drying them to be used in the future would be a good way to preserve them.
 

JWFilips

Well-Known Member
JW, did you grow your own Aleppo chilies? I never see them fresh in groceries here in NW FL.
Rocky,
Yes I grow then in NE Pennsylvania but I start the seed indoors in March. They are one of most flavorful chillis in the world and the heat does not kill you .
I like to grow them from fresh seed every 2 years ( Peppers cross so fast that they are not even close to an aleppo after the 3rd year of growing from last years seeds.
I get all my chilli seeds here:
Refining Fire Chillis
Great people to deal with