So i’ve always had an interest in Chillies, and I’ve wanted to grow them and make sauces since I can remember. I don’t know whether it’s the heat that entices me, or the flavour, or what. But there’s one thing that I certainly don’t like, and that’s the mornings after (*horrendous flashbacks*).
Back in the UK I tried everything to get my chilli plants to grow. Inside, outside, on the windowsill, above radiators, big pots, small pots (you get the picture). I won’t embarrass myself by putting any pictures up of my attempts, but if you just took a pile of soil and shoved a dead stick in the middle – you wouldn’t be far off how my plants looked. They either didn’t like the cold, or a much more plausible explanation, didn’t like me.
In Australia though, everything grows so well! (take that- plants on my windowsill at home!!) For example, we recently just got all of our off cuts of our veggies (capsicums/bell peppers, chillies, lemons, loads of other things) and just buried the lot in soil and left it out on the balcony. I’d say within a week shoots were popping out everywhere, and to this day I still don’t know what plants they are. Maybe they are some kind of weird hybrid lemon chillies which will make me millions of $$. But alas, I wait for the day they produce anything…..
But anyway, back to the regular Chillies. I’ve made it my mini project to grow some chilli plants on our tiny balcony and hopefully make some sauces. I started off with modest expectations of the plants, but they quite literally exploded in size after about 2 months and have now swamped the balcony (before and after pictures below). It’s getting to the stage where I just open the door a crack, throw some water in their general direction, and snap the door shut before they spread into the flat and take over the place like some kind of crap horror movie on Netflix (I’m thinking an eight part ‘revenge of the balcony chillies’ Netflix original series starring Michael Cera, and a very displeased Samuel L. Jackson).
So I took a fairly sizeable harvest not too long ago, a mixture of Cayenne Peppers (hot) and these chillies called ‘firecrackers’ (very hot). They are mostly green, and do actually turn red, but I am way too impatient and (as I’ve discovered) they melt my face off when they are red anyway so I am forever cutting them at the green stage.
I tried to follow some jazzy recipes online which incorporated onions, capsicums (bell peppers), and all this weird shit, but it ended up being a soupy mess and tasted like a gone off chicken broth. see picture.
But I stumbled across this quality guy on Youtube a couple of weeks ago, ‘It’s alive with Brad’, where he makes a fermented chilli sauce and, to be fair, it looked pretty sick. You wang all the chillies in a pot with salt, sugar, garlic and some other bits, shake it around a bit, and then leave it on the side for two weeks and do sweet FA except for burping the gas off once a day (otherwise it blows a hole in your wall and pisses off the neighbours).
I tried this, and well. It worked! I’ve done a few different batches over weekends where there has been no surf and the mates are being shit, and I’m getting to a stage where I’m getting some-kind-of vague consistency. It started off so hot that you couldn’t taste anything whatsoever except blood from the all the internal bleeding (again, just kidding, but they were blooming hot lol). But I’ve done some tweaking (basically adding more garlic) and there is some kind of flavour now! Wahey!
In summary, I’m not entirely sure what this blog post is even on about except that I grew some chillies, fucked up my first few batches of sauce but now it’s okay. Please don’t message me asking for my recipe because it changes every time and it’s shit.