Chilli garlic paste is a versatile condiment to have, to pack a punch or raise the spiciness of any dish,. You can get a variety of bottled chilli garlic sauces or pastes at your supermarket, but nothing like homemade!! You know exactly what has gone into it and the best part is you can adjust the amount of chillies or garlic you add to it.
We like it a lot spicy in all our dishes, so you will see me using a lot of green or red chillies. I always have a bottle of this super easy chilli garlic paste in my refrigerator at all times!! A dash of it in soups, slathering it (yes, slathering!! I told you we like it spicy) on breads for sandwiches or burgers, stirring it in Chinese stir fries and sometimes, my sons will just use it as a dip for chips or even idlis (steamed Indian rice-lentil cakes) and dosas (rice-lentil crepes)!!
It is very easy to make with simple ingredients you will almost always have in your pantry. You can use any type of dried red chillies. Garlic just needs to be peeled and sliced or chopped. Vinegar adds a tang to it as well as helping to preserve it for a longer time and I do add a teaspoon or so of oil to cut back the pungency of the chillies a little bit.
I do deseed the chillies (easy; snip off a small portion near the stem area, slit with a pair of scissors lengthwise and the seeds will just rain out of the chillies!)
- Around 40 to 50 dry red chillies
- 10 to 12 large cloves of garlic, peeled and sliced
- 1 teaspoon vinegar
- ½ teaspoon sugar
- 1 teaspoon oil
- Salt to taste
- Deseed all the chillies and soak in enough hot water for about half an hour.
- Peel and slice or chop the garlic cloves.
- After half an hour of soaking, drain the red chillies.
- In a blender or mixer, add the soaked chillies, garlic, vinegar, sugar and salt and blend to a fine paste.
- Remove from the blender into a bowl. Add the oil and mix it in.
- Stir well and store in an airtight container (preferably glass) in the refrigerator.
- Use as needed in a variety of dishes like sandwiches, Chinese, pulaos, biryanis, Thai dishes etc.
- It can be stored in the refrigerator for a couple of months at least.
- I deseed the chilies as sometimes the seeds do not get blended fine and we do not relish these seeds popping in our mouth.
- Use as much as needed in various dishes and the spiciness of the paste depends upon the chillies used. Some are much more hotter than the others, so use accordingly.
- Amount of garlic can be adjusted to your palate.
- Make sure to either use gloves while deseeding the chillies or wash your hands well with soap and water after handing them.