I was reading through my usual blogs and news orgs this morning and got to Ezra Klein at the WaPo. The usual wonky stuff, but he is a sorta foodie so he has links to recipes and such like. A link I followed led to the food guy at the NT Times in a video on how to make hot pepper infused oil. Piqued my interest because 1) I like chili oil and 2) chili oil is expensive. I din’t have all the stuff on hand that he mentions in the video, but I did have the basic stuff. I used some slices of ginger, and tossed in a few allspice berries, a few cloves, a sprinkle of coriander and cinnamon. And the red pepper flakes, and the szechuan peppercorns. Fun was had.
Warm the oil (I used peanut oil.) over a low flame, you don’t want it to get too hot or the peppers will burn. 230-240 degrees is about tops. Conversely, too cool and the flavors won’t infuse. Anyway, warm the oil and dump in the peppers and the other spices, then let the oil return to heat. Shut off the burner and set the pot aside to let it steep. Longer is better although you can use it right away. Strain the solids and maybe filter the oil through cheesecloth. I did but it isn’t required.