Sriracha Sauce with Garlic Scapes

sriracha

O you who believe, fasting is prescribed to you as it was prescribed to those before you, that you may (learn) self restraint” Qur’an 02:183

Ramadan Kareem! Ramadan starts tomorrow pretty much all over the world. There is always a bit of confusion to the start date because if you follow the example and tradition of the Prophet, we have to view the sliver of the new moon to declare the new month. Others, are content to follow the scientific date of the new moon. Most of the time, ok not really, but sometimes, we all agree and start on the same date. I love the lunar calendar!! There is always that bit of uncertainty and mystery to the start of Ramadan which has now become tradition in itself.

Before I get on with todays post, there were a couple of questions I wanted to answer from the comments last week, which I should’ve mentioned in the post I guess. John from the wonderful blog Kitchen Riffs mentioned about living in Morocco and how the natives there broke their fast. I wanted to say that, in last week’s post I mentioned only South Asian traditions and food. In most of the Middle Eastern, North African and Mediterranean countries, the fast is usually broken with soup and in Morocco, specifically, the harira. This far healthier than what the South Asians eat but like John mentioned, they too go on to eat huge meals later.

sriracha sauce

Another great question was from Jasmine from the very funny and vibrant blog Absolutely Jas, who asked what my children think about fasting. For my children, it’s something thats part of our life, faith and family.

Fasting is prescribed for children once they reach puberty. The people who are exempt for fasting are the sick or elderly with medical issues, pregnant and nursing women if its a hardship on them and travellers. I should also add that if anyone misses any of the fast, they do have to be made up at a later time. Yes, there is no excusing the fasting.

I fasted through my pregnancy and while I was nursing. The fasting during my pregnancy was wonderful because it took care of my morning sickness but the nursing one was harder because I was so dehydrated after feeding my son. But it still beat the though of having to make up 30 fasts later on and probably by myself! One thing about Ramadan is that you are not alone. Almost every Muslim is fasting with you and that support and community means a lot.

sriracha sauce

I have always made sure that my children were used to fasting. I started them at a young age and let them fast on the weekends or half days. I always try to make it fun and allow them to experience a holiday. My son Laith, who is 8, fasted half days last year and he will again this year. My daughters are all of age, so they will all be fasting. For us, this is our holiday, it’s our Christmas, our Easter, our Hanukkah, and I want my children to enjoy their holiday. At the end of Ramadan, we have huge celebrations, parties and gift giving. However, until we get to that, we have a month of prayer, family and community.

So, onto the recipe today; I mentioned that I would be sharing my family’s favourite Ramadan treats this month and yet, here is a recipe for Sriracha Sauce. Guess what? We love this stuff and go through bottles of it. Our Ramadan table is not complete without a bottle of this and ketchup. We drizzle it in our soup, dip our bhajis in it and slather it over our samosas. 

One problem with store bought sriracha sauce, have you seen what’s in it? Names of stuff I can’t even pronounce and a lot of it is on the GMO list. I have successfully, made my house 90% GMO free. It hasn’t been easy because I have to go to a million stores to buy what I need and most of the time, its very expensive. The solution to that is making it yourself. Sriracha sauce is one thing you can easily make yourself and it tastes just like the bottled stuff but SO MUCH BETTER.

I had never though about making sauces and salsas myself because thats one thing I just buy without thinking. Lately, I’ve had to think and read labels. A wonderful friend of mine had talked about making some but hadn’t been able to because she couldn’t find the right peppers. I remembered that and searched up a recipe. Food 52 popped up with one that was so easy, it was silly.

I went on the look out for the peppers and by golly, I found some. I grabbed 2 pounds and went on my sauce making way. A note, if you are going to go all out and make your own sriracha sauce, please spend the extra money and get organic vinegar and cane or palm sugar. All the white distilled vinegar in the US is made from cheap, GMO corn. The Fresno peppers used to make the sauce are not cheap ( I got mine for $3.99/lb) so let’s use great ingredients.

fresno chillies and garlic scapes

The sauce will last about 6 months in the fridge but chances are it will be long eaten way before that and you will be making another batch within a couple of weeks.

To change up the recipe a bit and because I was able to find the last of the garlic scapes at my farmers market on Saturday, I decided to exchange the garlic for the garlic scapes. 

sriracha sauce

 

Sriracha Sauce with Garlic Scapes

Cook time: 

Total time: 

Serves: 3 cups

adapted from Food 52
Ingredients
  • 1 pound/500g red Fresno chillies (can use red jalapeños), roughly chopped
  • 8-10 garlic scapes, roughly chopped (or use 8 garlic cloves)
  • 2 cups/470mL organic, distilled white vinegar
  • 1¾ teaspoons sea salt
  • ¼ cup raw turbinado/demerera sugar.
Instructions
  1. Soak the chopped chillies and garlic scapes in the vinegar and salt, in a jar or glass bowl.
  2. Let sit over night to mellow out the heat of the peppers.
  3. The next day, pour the chiilies and the vinegar into a small saucepan, add the sugar and place on medium high heat.
  4. Bring the mixture up to a boil, and then lower the heat and simmer for 5 minutes.
  5. After 5 minutes, pull off the heat and allow to cool to room temperature.
  6. Once the mixture has cooled, using a blender, puree the solids.
  7. Pour the blended sauce through a strainer, pressing against the solids to get out all the liquid.
  8. Pour into a clean jar and bottle and store in the fridge.
Notes
A great, fresh and bright tasting hot sauce. Has more kick than the bottled version. Fresno chillies may not be available everywhere but in a pinch, you can use red jalapeños or red serranos.

On Sunday, just to get the mountains out of our system before fasting started, we took a drive up to Mount Evans. As is the usual weather for our picnics, it was hailing, raining and cold and it was wonderful. 

We stopped by Summit Lake which is a few miles before the summit of Mount Evans and walked around. It is so beautiful. The landscape around the lake was carved out by glaciers many years ago and it is just fascinating to see. One of the things that amazes beyond anything else, is the sustainability of life at 12,000 feet. The tiny flowers that bloom at this altitude can overshadow fields of tulips and rain forests filled with orchids. 

yellow flowers

purple flowers

I have also added a tab on my top menu for the Rocky Mountains. I decided to dedicate a whole page for my love for the mountains. Please check it out every now and then as I add more photos to it. If you check now, you will see more of the amazing flowers I saw on Saturday.

Hope you enjoy some of the photos of Mount Evans and I will be back soon with another Ramadan favourite. Have a great week!

  1. oooh also just saw this- brilliant! bit late for garlic scapes (we call them wild garlic, or ramsons here) but definitely making the siracha anyway minus that!

  2. Thanks Nazeen for posting this recipe. My teenage boys will love you forever! I have probably have mentioned before that they like their food spicy and we go through a large bottle of hot sauce about every 3 weeks so we do not have to worry about the 6 month expiration date on the sauce. Take Care, BAM
    Bam’s Kitchen recently posted..Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana SmoothieMy Profile

    • I hope he likes it! It’s so much better than the bottled stuff and I am sure he will love it.

  3. What a wonderful hot sauce. I can see that this would be good to make in big batches and then bottle up to give away as gifts. I had no idea you weren’t allowed to drink during Ramadan. I understand going without food but I would think it is important to keep up the fluids especially in the heat of summer and doing everyday activities like playing sport or having to breastfeed – so easy to become dehydrated. I hope if goes well for you and your children xx
    Hotly Spiced recently posted..Chicken Cacciatore and…A Little Bit of HelpMy Profile

    • I actually gave some of this away as gifts to my friends for Ramadan, so yes, it’s definitely great for that. No, we’re not allowed to drink or eat. But if you drink enough during the breakfast then it’s usually ok. I make sure to never have cheese for breakfast, really makes you thirsty!

  4. Oh Nazneen, you are too kind, and thank you so much for answering my question. It’s so lovely that you have made ramadan into such a family celebration, and I’m not sure why I thought it would be any different 🙂 Fabulous sriracha recipe too – the bottle in my fridge is from my trusty Asian grocer and all in Korean – I have no idea what it in it. Unfortunately though, I have never seen a fresh fresno chilli pepper or red jalapeno anywhere. I may have to plant my own crop and go from there!
    Jas@AbsolutelyJas recently posted..Lady Crushes… And Chicken…My Profile

  5. Ramadan Kareem Nazneen. Thank you for enlightening us further as far as the traditional month of fasting is concerned; may yours be one of peace and contentment. Thank you also for the sriracha recipe: I have not tried making my own but shall surely try . . .

    • Thank you so much Eha, I appreciate the sentiment and well wishes. The sriracha recipe is so easy and it tastes just like the bottled stuff so I hope you do get to make it.

  6. I feel so proud for your son, who is keeping fast with you. I wish you and your family a successful Ramadan fast and may God bless you with all happiness.
    I experiment with chillies and hot sauces and this one looks fun.
    Balvinder recently posted..Blueberry and Almond MuffinsMy Profile

  7. Glad you enjoyed my comment on how Moroccans typically broke their Ramadan fast! And I’m glad to get these recipe for siracha. I go through loads of the stuff, and never really even thought of making my own. I should – I agree with you on all of loads of suspect ingredients in the commercial kind. Great post, and fun pictures! Thanks.
    john@kitchenriffs recently posted..Royal Bermuda Yacht Club CocktailMy Profile

  8. If you’ve been following me on Instagram, you’d know how much addictive I can be for sriracha. It’s crazy good stuff.

    So glad I have a recipe to reference if and when I make it myself. Thanks for sharing 🙂
    Kiran @ KiranTarun.com recently posted..Shrimp Fried RiceMy Profile

  9. That seems a fairly unusual variety of pepper. Where did you manage to find it? Can you suggest a good substitution if one cannot find the preferred variety?

    Happy holidays! My holidays are off center from the dominate culture too (Buddhist) and so I know a bit about what it’s like to be doing something “odd” from the dominate perspective… Maintaining such a strict spiritual discipline, especially for such a long period, is an interesting and educational experience. May you all be blessed by it.

    • I think you can sub any red hot pepper in their place but the flavour profile might change slightly. Like I mentioned in my post, red jalapeños are a good sub. I was able to find the Fresno chillies in my local Sprouts Market here in Denver.

  10. Wow, you found the peppers! I looked 2 months back, must try again. Can’t wait to try yours.

    Happy Ramadan to you all, may Allah bless your whole family. I am excited! Let us know of any things you do for the kids special for this month. I am collecting ideas for family traditions.

    I love that you tabbed Rocky Mountains, your pics are gorgeous!

  11. A wonderful post, Nazneen, and so informative. Thank you for continuing to shed light on the customs surrounding Ramadan and, in particular, those followed by your family.
    I am anxious to give this homemade sriracha a try. At Christmas, I’ve been giving gift baskets filled various condiments and jams that I’ve made. Sriracha sauce would be a welcome addition, though finding Fresno chilies — and even good jalapeños — in November may be a problem. I wonder if either chili could be frozen when in season for use later in the year. Hmmm …
    Thank you for sharing this recipe and for taking the time to further explain Ramadan.
    ChgoJohn recently posted..Grilled Spring Rack of LambMy Profile

    • Thanks John! I think you can most definitely freeze the chillies. Whenever I grow mine, and have a surplus, I freeze them and then pop them frozen into my dish. They are as a good as fresh. In this sauce you will be puréeing them anyway so using frozen ones would be just fine. I might consider chopping them before freezing so it’s even easier to throw into the vinegar. Maybe a basket could find its way over here this year…..

  12. Wow! I don’t think this sauce will last even a month in my refrigerator. It looks so good! It’s a wonderful thing that you get your children involved. I guess that’s the reason we have festivals and celebrations..they bring the family together! Love these pretty flowers. I will be checking on your Rocky Mountains tab frequently so I know what to look out for when I visit my brother in Denver!
    Sugar et al recently posted..Cornflake, Cranberry and Raisin CookiesMy Profile

    • Garlic scapes are the top green parts that the garlic grows. It grows into long curly stems if you let it grow and then eventually grows another flower like garlic head on top. Apparently, if you plant that little garlic head, you get garlic. Are you familiar with sriracha sauce? I am sure they have it in the UK, but I guess it can be considered a chilli jam though the sugar content is quite low and it’s quite runny like a sauce. I think it would be great on cheese but it is a hot sauce so it would be hot!