In fact, true to the genre of sauces all over the world, the hot sauce is not only an accompaniment but does honors as the prime ingredient in many dishes.
The term hot sauce couldn’t have been more apt for it refers to any hot and spicy sauce made from chilly peppers or cold extracts and vinegar. Thus, you can have sauces made from any kind of chilly pepper (i.e., the fruits of crops hailing in the Capsicum family) like red peppers, habanera or tabasco. The Tabasco sauce is the most popular amongst all the hot sauces out there.
How hot your hot sauce will be is dependent on the type of pepper being used. Thus, you have the bell pepper with a barely-there flavor at one end of the spectrum and the robust habaneros, which will work up quite a steam, at the other end. Interestingly, it is a substance called capsaicin, which imparts the characteristic heat to the pepper.
The hot sauce is a favorite ingredient in several Mexican and Cajun dishes and in Thai and Vietnamese cuisine. However, its widespread use is, as a barbeque accompaniment.
Barbecue sauce is poured onto grilled or barbecued meat. It is also used as a dipper. A hot barbecue sauce is usually a blend of sweet, sour and spicy elements and the most popular combination contains tomato flavorings, vinegar and sugar.
Barbecue sauces come in myriad forms, with each region boasting of the native BBQ sauce. So you have the fiery Texas variety with a tomato base, the vinegar and tomato based Arkansas variety tempered down by molasses, the white grape based Alabama type and the black pepper, mustard and vinegar concoction hailing from South Carolina.
For all of the fire they spew, hot pepper sauces are simple to prepare.
Take a few peppers (the number wholly depends upon how hot your sauce will be) such as habanera or tabasco, a cup of water, 1/3 cup red wine vinegar, one bell pepper, a tablespoon of paprika, salt to taste and cumin if you so desire. Chop or grind the peppers and boil it with all the ingredients. Lastly, crush this heady mixture in a blender. Your hot pepper sauce is prepared.
Some peppers are nothing short of live ammunition and are known to cause skin irritation and are especially nasty when they get into the eyes.
There’s more to a pepper than just the sweet flavor. Peppers are storehouses of vitamins A, C and E, potassium and folic acid. So apart from the distinct taste, the hot sauces also impart some nutritional value to the dishes that they grace.
The hot sauce retains its own in whatever dish it seems. As the saying goes, like it or loathe it, you just can’t ignore it.