Saturday, 11 August 2018

Sweet Chilli Sauce

A couple of days ago I picked this year's first batch of ripe chillis.

The large red ones are a type of "Cayenne", the small red ones are "Aji Benito" and the solitary yellow one is a "Golden Cayenne".

The total weight of those chillis was 233g, which was just a little short of the ideal quantity (250g) for making a batch of our favourite Sweet Chilli Sauce. I decided to go ahead anyway, and just reduce the quantities of the other ingredients by a small amount.

If you want the recipe for this sauce you can find it HERE, but for the purposes of my post today I'll paraphrase it. By the way, we usually make a half-quantity because I can seldom produce 500g of homegrown chillis all at once.

The chillis are prepped by removing the stalks and seeds, and then roughly chopped. You can use any type of chilli you like - mild, hot or atomic - but we don't like the atomic ones so I made this sauce with fairly mild ones. This is a sweet chilli sauce after all, not a Hot Sauce, so it doesn't need a huge amount of heat.

The only other ingredients required are a couple of cloves of garlic (optional), caster sugar and white vinegar. [NB: NOT malt vinegar or pickling vinegar, nor indeed white wine vinegar!]

The chillis are then blitzed for a few seconds in a food-processor, along with the garlic and a third of the white vinegar. This reduces them to a coarse pulp.

The pulp is then poured into a large saucepan with the caster sugar and the other two thirds of the vinegar. It is stirred gently over a low heat for about 5 minutes to dissolve the sugar, then brought to the boil.

Next, you turn down the heat and simmer the mixture gently for about 35 - 40 minutes. You will know when the sauce is ready because it changes to a much deeper colour and thickens to a sort of "jammy" texture which resists the spoon when you stir it. Don't cook it for too long though because you don't want to caramelise the sugar.

When the sauce is ready, allow it to cool before decanting it into sterilised glass jars. I think you'll agree that this particular batch of sauce is a beautiful colour! It filled two small jars.

You can use this sauce immediately, but it will keep (in sealed jars) in the fridge for several months if it really must!


  1. I love sweet chilly sauce. Would enjoy if it is homemade:)

  2. We make something similar but using either jam sugar or added pectin to make a jam. Made with lemon chillies it's absolutely delicious. My wife once picked the jar out of the fridge and spread it on her toast one morning thinking it was marmalade, but she really enjoyed it and has had it on toast for breakfast several times since! You may also want to check out chilli and tomato jam recipes?

  3. I do like sweet chilli sauce but am not likely to make any. I was warned that the fumes from the cooking could be a bit intense.


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