This recipe for Chinese hot chili oil makes an excellent accompaniment to noodles, dumplings, stir-fry dishes or salad-type dishes, such as Sichuan bang bang chicken.
This a very simple and straightforward method for making Chinese hot chili oil. If you like your chili oil even hotter, then increase the chili peppers or lower the amount of oil to 1/3 cup.
This recipe can make about 1/2 cup of chili oil which can be stored in a dry, clean and air-tight jar in the refrigerator for 1 month. If you use this chili oil very often, double or triple the ingredients to make a larger batch.
Before proceeding, please read the warnings about handling chili peppers safely.
- 10 to 12 small dried chilies (to make 2 tablespoons of coarsely chopped chili flakes)
- 1/2 cup peanut oil (or canola, vegetable oil, sunflower oil or olive oil)
- Optional: 1 tablespoon sesame oil
- Cut off the stems of the dried chilies and remove the seeds.
- Chop the chilies into coarse flakes (it’s easiest to do this by processing them in a blender for about 20 seconds).
- Place the chili flakes in a heat-resistant jar with a seal.
- Heat the oil in a heavy skillet over medium-high to high heat until it is starting to smoke. Continue heating the oil for 10 to 15 seconds. Remove the skillet from the heat.
- Wait 3 minutes, or until the oil has cooled to 225 to 240 F/107 to 122.5 C.
- Cool and strain the oil. But if you want to make the chili oil hotter, leave it for 1 or 2 days before straining. This will make the chili oil hotter and stronger. You can save the strained chili flakes for some other recipes if you like.
- Use the chili oil as desired in recipes or as a dipping sauce with dumplings and noodles. Stored in a sealed container in the refrigerator, chili oil will last for at least 1 month.
Handling Chili Peppers Safely
- Be very careful when you handle the chili pepper as the oil in capsicum can be very dangerous and harmful to your skin and eyes. You might want to wear plastic gloves when you are handling the chili peppers.
- Wash your hands thoroughly with warm water and soap after handling chili peppers.
- You also can use store-bought chili flakes or chili powder instead of whole dried chili peppers. This might be easier for beginners.
- Choose good-quality dried chili flakes or powder. Don’t pour the oil straight into the dried chili flakes as the high temperature of the oil might burn the dried chili flakes and spoil the taste of the chili oil.