Boing Boing editor/partner and tech culture journalist Xeni Jardin hosts and produces Boing Boing's in-flight TV channel on Virgin America airlines (#10 on the dial), and writes about living with breast cancer. Diagnosed in 2011. @xeni on Twitter. email: xeni@boingboing.net.

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53 Responses to “Artisanal DIY Sriracha: HOWTO homebrew "rooster sauce," without the chemical preservatives”

  1. otterhead says:

    This might seem picky but… I wish she sold it in squirt bottles.

    • CliffordS says:

      Looks like the chunkier style of Sriracha garlic sauce which is only sold in jars.  In my opinion its much better than the regular style sold in squirt bottles.  Less watery, more flavor.  Try some on your eggs, it’s heaven!

    • blueelm says:

      I have some “organic” gluten free sriracha that I am pretty happy about, and which also comes in a squirt bottle. Sky Valley I think is the name?

      And if you’re wondering I bought it because I thought… maybe it’ll taste good! I’m not sure really whether the amount of preservatives in the normal cock sauce are that significant. What I do know is the stuff tastes pretty good.

      • kringlebertfistyebuns says:

        “Gluten-free” sriracha?  Seriously?  

        If that isn’t emblematic of the triumph of marketing over substance, I dunno what is.  

        As for the regular stuff, the preservatives in it are pretty minimal.  A little potassium sorbate (mold/fermentation inhibitor), and a little sodium bisulfite (oxidation preventer).  Similar things are in many commercially-prepared juices, wines, and hard ciders.

        • blueelm says:

          TBF I think the Rooster brand could slap a gluten free on there. Believe it or not though, sauces are often assumed to be gluten free when they’re not so I can’t really say I’m surprised that it is stated explicitly.

  2. John Verne says:

    Meh. Sriracha. I put it on my phở sometimes.

    And, really. The amount of “preservatives” you might be eating is minuscule, even if you eat it every day. 

    The only cost-effective way to make this is to make it in large batches, in which case it is going to go funky and moldy eventually, which is way, way, WAY more of a health problem than a few PPM of a mold-and-rope inhibitor.

  3. Jesse Yules says:

    For me the surprising thing about the Sriracha arch is when one goes full circle and realizes Frank’s Red Hot is the greatest hot sauce. Similar to Coke and Heinz Ketchup that way.

    • John Verne says:

      Different sort of thing, Frank’s, but I do love that stuff, too.

    • otterhead says:

      After years of collecting all sorts of ‘artisan’ and obscure and oddball hot sauces, trying them on various foods… I’ve come back to two sauces. Frank’s Red Hot and Sriracha.

    • scatterfingers says:

      I do like Frank’s, except that it’s pretty mild.

    • Cary Allen says:

       I never quite got the cult following with Sriracha, considering the variety of peppers in the world  and the concoctions made with them that thickly populate the shelves of Asian and other specialty stores. There is no ‘perfect,’ best for all occasions hot sauce as far as I’m concerned. Let a thousand fires burn.

  4. Lord Xenu says:

    I loves me some good Hot Cock Sauce.

  5. Paul Renault says:

    Whaa? 

    Me, I have a soft spot for Cholula.  Not quite as hot, but very flavourful.

  6. n/t: Wow, f/1 lenses have made it into docuads now?

    Two things that could be improved upon for the home cook: 1) color should be among the last criteria for chiles – I know, she has a product to sell but flavor should be #1 for homemade – yeah, brown, yum.  2) palm sugar isn’t better for you than white sugar.  Jaggery might impart a unique flavor, but you’d think from the genesis of the company, a less glycemic sweetener would be more appropriate.  This is preserved by pH and fermentation, right?

  7. EH says:

    Their Etsy setup tells me e-commerce (in general) still has a ways to go.

  8. Jeffrey says:

    I called my daughter over to hear about making how to make your own hot sauce only to listen to several F-bombs.

  9. bcsizemo says:

    Foodies, hipster, …

    Yup that about explains it.

  10. Jardine says:

    Because my spiciness limit is Cool Ranch Doritos, I have no idea what you people are talking about.

  11. Melted Crayons says:

    Folks:  if you’re cutting a lot of hot peppers, GLOVES keep the capsaicin off your hands so that you don’t touch sensitive body parts and impart HEAT to those sensitive body parts.  Once you’ve had that experience you will never forget!

  12. Bryce Caron says:

     Xeni, the scare of preservatives has gone too far. Sodium benzoate, potassium benzoate, and sodium bisulfide are as common in fine dining restaurants as they are in processed food, albeit in varying quantities. Used properly, these additives keep apples from browning, keep avocados green, and the addition of these is no different than adding lemon or lime juice, or just citric acid. Why would you not want to ingest something that makes your food better?

  13. Daemonworks says:

    Honestly, I just want a nice, pure habanero sauce. Or powdered habanero. For some reason, stupidly easy to find in Japan (in the equivalent of a dollar store!) but the ones I’ve found around here are all so watered down they barely have any kick to them at all for folks like me who need the raw power of habanero or an equivalent.

    • papiermeister says:

       I really like el Yucateco green habanero sauce for flavor and kick of habs or Melinda’s naga jalokia sauce for true ass-kick, but real flavor as well. Even though it is made from the ghost pepper, it is not deadly hot (you can easily over do it, though – best to start out with little drops). Really hot peppers release endorphins and a “pepper high” is kinda fun!

      On topic, tho – sriracha replaced Tabasco on my eggs, and I would try to make my own to share with friends, I already grow the peppers.

    • Jim Nelson says:

      You have to go online to find anything except in a few places – here in Richmond, nobody stocks the good stuff. larger cities are better – my parents came back from Oregon with a gift for me from one of the hot sauce specialty stores. It holds place of pride in my kitchen now.

  14. Tim Westbrook says:

    Sounds good, but how is this DIY?

    • rrh says:

       Well, someone’s doing it themselves. My disappointment was the all caps HOW TO apparently goes:
      1) Develop your own proprietary recipe after months of experimentation
      2) Follow that recipe

  15. dragonfrog says:

    Without the preservatives you’re just eating chilies and garlic – the salt, sugar, and vinegar make it into a delicious sauce.

    Oh, I see, demon preservatives, the kind with scary chemical formulas – like sodium chloride, α-D-glucopyranosyl-(1→2)-β-D-fructofuranoside, and ethanoic acid.

  16. Jay Converse says:

    No gloves with all those peppers?  That takes balls.

  17. E T says:

    Are bandanas considered clean enough for commercial food production?

  18. devophill says:

    “Ninja sriracha master”. It’s funny, because Asians are ninjas.

  19. cstatman says:

    great.  thank you Xeni.   thank you for introducing me to something I never knew existed; artisan Sriracha,  that I very much want right NOW.  Sriracha,  makes EVERYTHING better.    (but don’t use it as lube!)

  20. Guest says:

    Seriously, someone please ask them how they can handle peppers all day long without gloves and not get second degree burns.

  21. PKMousie says:

    we call it bird squirt

  22. Dorkomatic says:

    Artisanal?  Yes, I know what it means; but the word still troubles me.

  23. kringlebertfistyebuns says:

    I’m all for people learning how to prepare and preserve foods, and very much for people taking an interest in where their food comes from.  But this is fetishization of food.  Sriracha is excellent stuff, but at the end of the day, it’s just…chili sauce.  

    Every time I read about this kind of stuff, I am always reminded of Garrison Keillor’s “95 Theses 95″:

    “I pour a round of Lowenbrau, being careful not to pour along the side but straight down so the beer can express itself, and they say, ‘Did you ever try Dockendorf?’ It’s made by the Dockendorf family from hand-pumped water in their ancient original family brewery in an unspoiled Pennsylvania village where the barley is hauled in by Amish families who use wagons with oak beds. Those oak beds give Dockendorf its famous flavor. These beer bores, plus the renovators of Victorian houses, the singer-songwriters, the runners, the connoisseurs of northern Bengali cuisine, the collectors of everything Louis Armstrong recorded between August 1925 and June 1928, his seminal period–they are driving me inexorably toward life as a fat man in a bungalow swooning over sweet-and-sour pork. You drove me toward them.

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