Piri Piri Pepper Sauce

What the heck is a piri piri pepper? No, it’s not Peter Piper’s worst nightmare (well, okay, maybe it would be). Also known as the African Bird's Eye pepper, it’s a chile of Portuguese origin that’s most famously prevalent in Africa. I came across it in a little shop in Pike Place Market and knew I had to try it out. With my recipe for the Bennett’s special already partially formed in my head, I figured that a sauce would be the perfect way to include this exotic little pepper in my plans.

After some tweaking, the sauce was spicy, sweet, and tangy. It had complexity and a heat that just kept you coming back for more, and it was super easy to make. And here’s a hint: it might be REALLY good on smoked meat…

The piri piri pepper sauce, ready to serve!

Piri Piri Pepper Sauce
(makes about 3 1/2 cups)

3 cups distilled vinegar
4 teaspoons chopped dried piri piri peppers
2 tablespoons Kosher salt
2 1/2 teaspoons garlic clove, chopped
1 teaspoon honey
1 kaffir lime leaf, crushed

Combine all ingredients in a blender or food processor and blend together. Reserve and let rest for at least two hours.

Let me know what you think in the comments!
This was the Bennett's special: Grilled chicken on a strata made with roma tomatoes, kale, Grand Central Bakery bread, and Georgetown Brewing's Roger's Pilsner, all topped with a thin gravy and roasted yellow & purple cauliflower florets. That's the piri piri sauce in the ramekin on the side!

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Lover of big ideas and bold flavors. Food should be like family and friends: honest, fun, and fulfilling.

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