Sunday, September 13, 2009

Picka a Peppa, any peppa

What follows is Not a secret: I love hot sauce.  Vinegary, peppery, it can liven up any food, with a bit of brightness and that selson tingle across my tongue.  Eggs,  potatoes, pasta, beans, veggies, pretty much anything it'll work on.

This next thing isn't a secret either: Trini's love hot sauce too.  They aren't shy about it either and put it on on nearly everything.  From Trini dishes like Doubles, Roti, and various curries and stews to less traditional hot sauce landing pads like pizza.   When they have a landing pad that big, they are sure to land a freaking Chinook of hot sauce on it.  

The stuff isn't just abundant, it's good too, and varied.  I have a softspot in my heart burned thumper for places that make their own condiments, and nearly every Roti shack, doubles stand or fine dining establishment has their own variation.  I love this, and I get a little excited seeing those big unmarked plastic bottles, and knowing that the contents inside are going to be a spicy surprise.  At nicer restaurants there will be a little silver container with a small spoon, generally made of some heat resistant metal so as not emerge from the sauce bent from the heat.  

I've found that you can make a relatively reliable snap judgement on an eatery based on the quality of the pepper sauce.  Searingly hot sauces that glop onto food and overwhelm it means,  that the join is either supremely confident in the sauce, or that they need something to cover up the quality of the food (or some combination of the two).  Other places have sauces that excel at adding both heat and interest to food, giving you new flavors to explore in your smoldering mouth.  Do I detect some cumin, cilantro and curry  bubbling underneath that fiery fruity blanket of habanero peppers?  I believe I do, and I like it.  

This is a bit of a secret: Trini hotsauce knocks me on my ass.   I'll watch Trini's pour it on, as I gingerly dot my food with it.  Thankfully, I can control it, and i can make it as hot as I want.  

Here are a couple of recipes for ya to layer on,

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