Kari Bates sent me a recipe for this incredible sauce. I've tweaked it just a bit for proportions, subbed a couple fresh ingredients, and added a few process steps. This is fabulous with chicken, wild mushrooms, root vegetables, or enchiladas, to name just a few.
Note the extensive use of reduction in this recipe. Reducing at relatively high heat as Kari does here intensifies and focuses taste profiles and allows a certain amount of caramelization; the result is a concentrated burst of flavors that will nicely accent a myriad of dishes.
I've included a recipe for house made chili garlic sauce. If you're pressed for time, you can certainly use a favorite commercial version of your own, but try making this at home and I bet you'll never go back to store bought. My recipe is a Sriracha style sauce we make with red jalapeños, but as shown below, you can sub the chili of your choice and thereby moderate or intensify the heat level. If you use dried chiles, reconstitute them in plenty of fresh water until soft, prior to making the sauce.
House Made Chile Garlic Sauce
2 heads Garlic
20 red Chiles, (Jalapeño, Serrano, Hatch, Thai, Etc)
2 bulbs Shallot
2-3 Tablespoons Apple Cider Vinegar
2-3 Tablespoons Grape Seed Oil
1 Tablespoon Agave Nectar
1 teaspoon Fish Sauce
Sea Salt to taste
Preheat oven to 400° F.
Peel the outer husk off each garlic head and trim about 1/2″ off the tops, exposing the cloves. Wrap each head tightly in aluminum foil and place them on a baking sheet.
Dry roast garlic for 40 to 45 minutes until cloves are soft. Remove from oven and allow to cool until handleable.
If you opt for fresh chiles, rinse and trim off the tops. It's your decision at this point to remove seeds and trim membranes or not. Leaving them in with any chile that packs a punch means more heat. Rough chop chiles.
If you used dry chiles, reserve a few tablespoons of the soaking water and discard the rest. If at any point your ingredients seem a bit tight, (due to the use of dried chiles), add a bit of the water to loosen things up.
Rinse, peel and trim shallots, then mince.
In a large sauté pan over medium heat, add the peanut oil and heat through. Sauté shallot until the raw smell has dissipated and they're beginning to turn translucent.
Transfer shallots from pan to a blender or food processor. Squish the roasted garlic into the vessel, then add chiles, agave nectar, vinegar, and a teaspoon of sea salt. Blend to a uniform, fine paste.
Reduce heat on sauté pan to medium low, add the chile paste and fish sauce. Blend thoroughly, and allow to heat through.
Taste and adjust salt, agave, and water balance as needed.
You can strain the sauce at this point if you prefer a smoother texture, or leave it as is.
Transfer sauce to a glass bowl, cover and refrigerate for at least four hours to allow flavors to marry. Sauce will last for 2-3 weeks refrigerated.
Here's that fabulous Chili Lime Cream Sauce
1/4 Cup dry White Wine
1 fresh Lime
1/2 Cup Whipping Cream
1 Tablespoon fresh Ginger Root
1 Tablespoon Shallot
2 Tablespoons Chili Garlic Sauce
6 Tablespoons unsalted Butter
Cut butter into 1/2″ cubes and bring to room temperature.
Zest and juice lime, reserve zest and 1/4 cup juice.
Rinse, peel and mince ginger, shallot, and garlic.
In a small sauce pan over medium high heat, combine the wine, lime juice and zest, ginger, and shallot. Simmer, stirring steadily, until reduced by 50%. Pulse with an immersion blender until smooth and uniform. Pour through a strainer and discard the remains; return base sauce to pan.
Add cream and continue simmering, stirring regularly with a whisk, until reduced by 50%.
Reduce heat to low and whisk in chili powder, blending thoroughly and heating through.
Add butter one cube at a time, whisking each in before adding the next.