Thursday, September 08, 2011

Santaka's on the wire!

I just made my first fried chile paste.  My entire apartment reeks in such a good way.  Thank god the weather is good so I can have all my windows open.  Instead of crafting a sambal or a nam prik I decided to go for a foundation - pure chiles with only adding oil and a splash of lemon juice.  Salt, dried shrimp, lemon grass, any and all other additives are being left out for the time being.  My idea is to have this chile paste and add to it as the dish requires.  As it stands, the paste has a vicious bite to it but due that magic of roasting (SCIENCE!) there is also a really rich bass note to both the heat and flavour.

I will be storing this batch and sending it out in the next week.  I will have some on reserve for further blending purposes.

Here's what I done did recipe:

  • A couple of beers
  • Roughly two dozen fresh Santaka chiles
  • A tablespoon or so of olive oil
  1. Drink beers.
  2. Preheat oven to 450.
  3. Destem chiles and throw in large bowl.
  4. When all the chiles are destemmed, coat/toss in oil, put in Pyrex baking container, then put chiles in pan in oven.
  5. Roast for about thirty minutes.
  6. Take out of oven, put in blender with the juice of on half lemon.  Blend.
  7. Heat a skillet on med-low.  Put contents of blender in pan when hot.  Add the juice of the other half of lemon.
  8. Add another tablespoon of oil to pan.
  9. Keep chiles in pan moving.  DO NOT BURN.
  10. After about five minutes put the chiles back in the blender.  Important safety tip:  Do not put hot pan full of chile oil in the sink and then pour cold water in it.  I didn't do that because it was something I learned years ago.  Hot pan with chile oil + cold water = chile steam.
  11. Blend the chiles again in the blender.
  12. Tada!  Put paste in pyrex (not plastic) container or other glass container.  Store in fridge.
More news to follow once I stop sneezing.

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