This stuff is the bomb baby! Seriously, we always have a big jar of this in our fridge. Always! I started making it years ago, after I found a fabulous recipe in the China Moon cookbook by Barbara Tropp (it’s an awesome cookbook). Of course I have tweaked the basic recipe tons, so it’s not as she wrote it any longer, but that’s the fun thing about recipes.
What I loved most about her chili oil recipe is that there’s lots of chili paste as well as the flavored oil. I wound up reducing the oil a lot, so that it’s mostly paste with just a little oil. Because that’s just how I roll… I also remove the garlic cloves from the oil, so that there’s no worry with botulism at all (garlic + oil in a jar is not a good thing). I also add dried onions, although I’m planning to try finely minced fresh shallots next time. That’s the great thing about this recipe. It’s so adaptable!
And don’t even think about throwing away the cooked garlic! It will keep in the fridge for a couple of days, and it fab stirred into soups or mixed into a scramble. I’ve even caught my husband eating it with a spoon.
This chili paste is wonderful stirred into just about everything, and makes a fabulous dipping sauce with a splash of tamari and a small dollop of the chili paste. You can also stir a little into soups, congee, scrambles, stir-frys, salad dressings or just as a condiment with steamed rice. You will find yourself putting it in everything!
When my brother was in college, he would regularly hit me up for jars of this. I was his chili dealer. His meals consisted of steamed rice, homemade kimchi (from his roommate’s mom) and this chili paste. Sounds pretty tasty to me, and it worked perfectly with his very tiny budget.
The ingredients are all easy to find, especially if you have an Asian grocery nearby. I buy my chili flakes at Costco, and the preserved beans at a market near my house. You can also double the recipe to make a big batch. Just make sure to store it in the fridge. Oh and I almost forgot. The chili paste will be much hotter and fresher tasting if you use new chili flakes, rather than a bottle that has been sitting in your pantry for a while. Let me know if you have any questions when you go to make it. Seriously guys, you are going to love this stuff!
And like always, this recipe is gluten-free and vegan!
If you make it, take a picture and tag it #julieskitchenette on Instagram so I can see.
- 1 1/2 cups toasted sesame oil
- 1 cup dried chili flakes
- 2/3 cup dried fermented black beans, coarsely chopped (not regular black beans)
- 7 large garlic cloves, lightly smashed
- 1/4 cup dried onion flakes
- 1 tablespoon finely minced and peeled fresh ginger root
- 1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons organic granulated sugar
- Combine all of the ingredients into a large saucepan and bring to a low simmer over medium heat, stirring occasionally. Once the mixture is at a simmer, reduce the heat to low and continue to cook at a very low simmer for 15 minutes, stirring as needed. You may need to adjust the heat periodically, as you don’t want the mixture to get too hot and burn the chilies.
- Remove from heat and let cool. Remove the garlic from the oil mixture. Scoop the oil and chili mixture into a clean jar with a lid. Make sure that the chili goop is covered with oil. If not, drizzle a little sesame oil over top. This will keep it from growing any mold. Refrigerate for up to 6 months.
- Tip: This recipe can be doubled for an extra-large batch
- Gluten-free + Vegan