After the Firecracker Hot Sauce hit my farmers’ market table, several folks asked for something hotter. “Mo hotta, mo betta,” my faithful CCFM supporter Dan said, and he was serious about it.
So what is a relative hot sauce wimp to do when her peeps are asking her to bring on the heat? How could I even test the sauce for flavor if it is too hot for my somewhat meager palate?
Saved by the toothpicks! Turns out, the little bit of sauce I could pick up by dipping a toothpick into it as it ferments was enough to get a sense of the flavor balance without sending smoke out of my ears and nose.
Using mostly medium red hot peppers (cayenne, cherry peppers, serranos and fresnos) and more habaneros than seemed sensible, I created a balance that can vary between HOTTTT and medium-hot. Because the latest batch uses fresno hot peppers (comparable to jalapeños), it is more along the lines of medium-hot. For you, my beloved “Mo’ hotta, mo’ betta” folks out there, stay tuned for the batches later this summer, made with hotter Vermont reds.