Sweet chilli sauce is one of those things that people tend to buy ready-made, but it’s really quite easy to make yourself. It’s fairly time-consuming, so just best to make a large quantity in one go and preserve it in bottles for future use. Sweet chilli sauce keeps well for several weeks, and once opened it will last about a week in the fridge.
It’s also a great way to use up or preserve chillies when you’ve got a glut of them and don’t know what to do with them all!
- 500g fresh red chillies
- 3 cloves of garlic
- 3 cups of white vinegar
- 3 cups caster sugar (you can substitute raw sugar, but this will take longer to dissolve; or palm sugar, although this will also take longer to dissolve, and will give a stronger, sweeter flavour)
- Food processor – if you don’t have one, that’s ok – but it will take you longer to finely chop all the chillies)
- Sterilised airtight bottles to preserve the sweet chilli sauce in
- Set aside 100g of the chillies, halve, and place in a bowl
- Halve and de-seed the rest of the chillies (this is time-consuming, and you’ll want to wear cotton or rubber gloves so you don’t burn your hands), and add them to the bowl
- Coarsely chop the chillies, and put them in the food processor
- Add the garlic and one cup of the vinegar
- Process the mixture until it is well blended and the chillies are finely chopped (alternatively you can chop by hand, and then mix with the garlic and vinegar in a large bowl)
- Place the chilli mixture, the remaining vinegar, and all of the sugar in a large saucepan, and stir over a low heat for 5 minutes or until the sugar is fully dissolved
- Turn heat up to high, and bring to the boil
- Reduce heat and simmer for 30-40 minutes, stirring occasionally
- When the sauce is nice and thick you can transfer it to your bottles, and seal immediately
- Sweet chilli sauce goes great with a wide variety of snacks and nibbles, especially my post-apocalyptic Thai fried sweetcorn cakes.