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consistency Question regarding Sauce v Salsa and dilution.

Hello all,
 
A newcomer enters your hallowed domain, I have a couple of questions and would appreciate some hand holding.
 
i am in Spain, for all intensive purposes think ‘Mars’ when it comes to obtaining ingredients and such like, oh, and I am on low funds and finally, most Spanish people don’t eat hot food.. I am on a winner here right? Oh, I also have a stomach condition that gives me intense stomach pains and had me off work for 18 months recently.. it isn’t easy being a chili head but it hasn’t stopped me.
 
Now to the question, I am making ‘hot’ sauce for me now, but my end game is to sell hot sauce to businesses here for tourists to put on their food while here.. since you can’t get decent hot sauce here (not hot ‘hot’ anyway) the tourists love it but the Spanish don’t make it... oh, and the ‘angle’ as it were, I have a delicate stomach.. so i am aiming to make hot sauce for people like me, who like the SHU but who go through 7 hells afterwards.. thats the end game. To make a hot sauce that doesn’t recreate the alien stomach bug scene.. I,want ‘Hot’ sauce I can eat, without killing me in the process. We are just starting out.
 
i make my veg and fruit and throw it in a pan, liquidize the snot out of it, then heat it for around an hour to 2 hours then bottle in re-used jam jars (having boiled them thoroughly first) and close the lid, jar cools, safety popper on jar goes down, jar is pretty much good to go as long as you don’t open it.. I think ...
 
As it stands a batch of veg costs me 32€.. (early days still, just nailing down recipe first) but i get 4 Jam jars out of it, full of lovely chilli salsa.. tastes fine,  but at 8€ a jar... cost alone!
 
on burgers and in kebebs though..OMG.... .anyway, I then look at a bottle of Tabasco and realise that tobasco is at best 10% mash (is this the right term for the veg?) and 90% vinegar... where as my bottle, 20* the size is 95% mash and 5% vinegar.
 
i want to aim for a 50/50 maybe 40% mash 60% vinegar mix, I also don’t want it to be too runny..
 
Finally, the question, and sorry it took so long.
If i take my mash and add a few litres of apple vinegar (apparently the one to use) what container should i use to age it in? Ideally i want to age the mash/vinegar mix for 6 months.. forget the stereo typical image of oak casts stacked high in a forgotten warehouse somewhere aka Tomb Raider style ... i have little here like that.. can i use plastic water bottles 6 to 8L in size (goes without saying they are sanitized) or does it have to be thick glass or more beer style with an air lock?
 
 
now ‘one’ thing, my friend in Australia sent me a bottle of “sh1t the bed hot sauce”, yes it is a real thing, yes it sounds stupid, yes, australians have a dry sense of humor..no, it does not have a 1 in the name, it uses a i.
 
the thing about that sauce 50,000SHU was that whilst tasted great (very fruity) it absolutely sent me to the 7 hells ripping my stomach apart, i think it was the citrus used in the sauce, most people wouldn’t notice but as i said i am delicate stomach wise.. I read in the pinned 101 making chilli sauce for the first time common quests thread (thanks for that btw) that home cooks should be aiming for ph of 4.0 (very useful tip. Ty)... now I have yet to try BUT if i make a batch and the ph4 rips my stomach it is possible to make a chilli sauce z( or salsa) that isn’t PH4 but more neutral?
 
doctors still haven’t given me a prognosis other than ‘we know it isn’t x y or z’ but certain food typs trigger it, its an intense pain always in the same spot, about 2cm left of my belly button and 2cm down.. so a lot of the testing i am doing is trial and error, don’t ask me how painful it was to find out but things like raw lemons and tomato skins are a HELL NO!   
 
anyway, i have many more questions but i think I have taken enough of your time already, thank you in advance of any reply you may give.
 
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Here is my take on what your going for I try my best to explain but have a few questions of my own.

For this.....
If i take my mash and add a few litres of apple vinegar (apparently the one to use) what container should i use to age it in? Ideally i want to age the mash/vinegar mix for 6 months.. forget the stereo typical image of oak casts stacked high in a forgotten warehouse somewhere aka Tomb Raider style ... i have little here like that.. can i use plastic water bottles 6 to 8L in size (goes without saying they are sanitized) or does it have to be thick glass or more beer style with an air lock?

What it sounds like is you want to age this like Tabasco and that means you will be fermenting the ingredients, generally this just consists of ingredients, salt and water if needed. (we can go into ratios if needed) Then aged for a period of time.....and to make shelf stable vinegar is added to get to that 4.0. I don't see any problem with using plastic so long as its sanitized before throwing your ingredients in. You don't necessarily need an airlock, it just would cut down on maintenance, you can set it and forget it. Without it you just need to "burb" the bottles by twisting of the lids just enough to release pressure. This will only happen for about week or two depending on how many sugars are available in the ing. you are using. After the two week period you usually good to just leave it alone.

Watch a couple video's on fermenting, its basically all the same whether you are making sauerkraut, pickles, hot sauce etc.

for this....
I also don’t want it to be too runny..

I would suggest using a bit of xanthan gum this will thicken the sauce and prevent separation. Little goes a long way.

For this...
now I have yet to try BUT if i make a batch and the ph4 rips my stomach it is possible to make a chilli sauce z( or salsa) that isn’t PH4 but more neutral?

I think this may be possible what i am thinking is using vinegar diluted with water for your sauces to keep the ph above 4. For the salsa I'm not sure maybe cutting back on the tomatoes and diluting? maybe with adding salt to keep the tomato "taste" can still use the xanthan gum to thicken either if needed. But, going above 4.6 would not make this shelf stable and the product would need to be refrigerated.

Hope this helps, and best of luck
 
Thank you!! Most helpful, so, im essence, cook my mash, add vinegar.. store in large container and air off gassex...
 
does ambient temp matter? Is winter here now but come may / June it gets really hot here until October.. maybe ferment until late Aperil, early May before it gets too warm?
 
 
Zhardoum said:
Thank you!! Most helpful, so, im essence, cook my mash, add vinegar.. store in large container and air off gassex...
 
does ambient temp matter? Is winter here now but come may / June it gets really hot here until October.. maybe ferment until late Aperil, early May before it gets too warm?
temps
No vinegar, just salt and water. Ambient temp does matter, usually want to stay in the 60-75F range. lower temps are ok but it will be a slower or not as active ferment. Higher temps you will have a more active or quicker ferment.
 
Here is a link to a free ebook that will give you some understanding on fermenting...
https://www.culturesforhealth.com/media/docs/Lacto_Fermentation_eBook.pdf
 
One thing to note, is I don't recall an instance where I cooked all ingredients prior to fermenting, after yes but not before. If you cook prior to fermenting you are most likely killing off all beneficial bacteria that's needed for fermentation. I would guess you would just end up with a slimy mess after a few months? could be wrong. But if you are set on cooking prior I would highly suggest that you add the bacteria back in (after cooking and cooled) to your mash prior to setting to ferment. you can pick some up online here
 
https://www.caldwellbiofermentation.com/
 
Here is a ferment I'm working on now....this is raw peppers, salt, and water only. Its about a month old
IMG_1841.JPG
 
Ok, Round 2, “a little more”..
 
i have read “some” of the Ebook (Ty!) and at 175+ pages can see there is a lot of info!
 
however, what i take from it was, prep the veg, everything, chillies last, chop and remove seeds, add water and salt and the lacto yeast thingymajig.. taste daily until tangy, then stick in fridge or cold -ish room..  the longer the better..
 
questions.
i get the impression fermentation is more for solid veg, cabbage, pickles etc, not for a mix of veg, seasoning, herbs, fruit juices etc, i just feel my mix is too watery and wont create the water air block needed? * to clarify, all the pictures show veg pushed to the bottom of a jar with a clear brine ‘gap’,at the top.. my mash is very runny and uses a lot of fluids* so
1) should i then only ferment the veg i will use instead? Adding the more runny stuff later?
2) how much water should I put in the mix? If i put my mash in a glass jar, let me say 2 litres worth, how much water over it, an inch, two inches? I don't want to dilute it too much..i think? OR do I? Remember at the start I said I wanted to get more sauce out if my veg, is this the way? 
3);does leaving the chili seeds in the fermentation matter ?, i want to keep the heat...later, just before cooking it will be liquidized for a long time..

as always, thanks again..
 
 
You can ferment it all together. May be easier if you don't completely liquefy all your ingredients first. Just rough chop it all and use weights or a ziplock filled with water to keep your ingredients below the surface of the water. 
 
As mentioned by beerbreath81, don't cook your mash first, it won't ferment properly. With a fermented mash cooking at all isn't necessary but if you want to cook it, do it at the end. 
 
Thanks!

I suppose a status update is in order. Well..

Big bottle front and centre is the sauce.. has been fermented and blended snd will be blended again. To my surprise i found that a) it wasnt that strong and b) wasnt that hot.. so more chilli was added and now it needs to age.

Green jsr, cucumbers becoming gherkins

Jar on right, added to 3 litres of puree will become burger reñish, but i am thinking i need hotter chills, oh, I ordered a load pf seeds from la semilla so now i just have to grow them.

Thanks again all for the help..
 

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