In the beginning there were peppers, and humans saw them and knew that they were good, capable of setting the mouth afire, torturing and tantalizing the taste buds all at once. We kept coming back for more. We are still coming back for more. Hot sauce is most definitely a phenomenon of epic proportions, with aptly named selections galore and more sampling than a scorched tongue can handle.
There are classics, Tabasco and Sriracha (make your own), that will never be replaced, and they are worthy of the well-earned reputations and following they have. But, to simply settle on those, or even on one or two of the many tongue-frying varieties that warrant names referencing hell or volcanoes, well, that‘s selling ourselves a bit short. There’s more to hot sauce than just clever handles and being hot.
The truth of the matter is that hot sauce is really simple to make, tastes much better when done fresh and is a lot of fun to tweak here and there, adding a bit of fruit or funking up with roasted veggies. It doesn’t take long to get as hooked on making hot sauce as we are on using it.