Aji Dulce “Hot” Sauce
- 15 ml (1 tablespoon) olive oil
- 6 cloves garlic, minced
- 400 grams (14 ounces) sweet yellow onion, chopped
- 200 grams (7 ounces) shredded carrot
- 1.8 kilograms (4 pounds) ripe tomatoes (plum tomatoes work well here), diced
- 200 grams (7 ounces) Aji Dulce peppers (about 25 pods), stems removed and pods chopped
- 2 medium limes
- 218 ml (1 cup) white vinegar
- Salt to taste
1. In a sauté pan over medium heat, sauté the oil, garlic, onion and carrot until onions are slightly browned.
2. Add the diced tomato and cook over medium low heat until the mixture is a thick liquid, with most of the chunks of tomato broken down, about 30 minutes.
3. Add the Aji peppers and simmer for another 15 minutes.
4. Add juice from the limes and the vinegar and stir the mixture while cooking for another 5 minutes. Season with salt to taste.
5. Let the mixture cool and puree in a blender.
At this point you can either leave the liquid with the seeds included or you can strain through a coarse strainer. Bring the liquid to a boil and then let cool. Pour into hot sauce bottles or you can use canning jars as well.
For a variation that combines sweet fruit with some heat, to the mixture above add 300 grams (11 ounces) of a fruit preserve — apricot works well — and one half of a regular habanero pod, seeded and ribs removed. The preserves will make the final mixture slightly thicker and it can easily be used as a glaze or as a topping.