This simple and versatile recipe comes from David Rocco’s Made in Italy. Essentially just garlic, salt, various chiles, fresh basil and sun dried tomatoes covered in a bit of olive oil to preserve it, this makes a wonderfully flavorful base for a large variety of food. This is my third time making a large batch. I think of it as my kitchen helper on those tired weekdays when I need to make something with pizzazz but my energy level is less-than-perky.
I use whatever chiles are at hand. Generally I try to remove the ribs and seeds from the larger ones to control the heat. Of course all the stems must go. I don’t bother trying to clean the tiny chiles, which tend to be the hotter kind. This time around I used a lot of those tiny red Thai ones so the condiment turned out especially spicy. A little goes a long way.
Generally I add this to pasta sauces, sautéed veggies or use it with tofu or fried tempeh. Yum!
Italian basil, garlic and chile condiment
3 cloves garlic, peeled
1 poblano chile, stems, ribs and seeds removed
4 jalapeño chiles, stems, ribs and seeds removed
~½ cup Thai chiles, stems removed
¼ cup sun dried tomatoes in olive oil
1 tsp salt
~12 Italian basil leaves
Olive oil to prevent oxidation
Simply place everything but the olive oil in your food processor. Pulse until coarsely ground. Scoop into a cleaned jar. Pack down a bit and cover with olive oil to prevent oxidation. Seal with lid and keep refrigerated. I’ve no idea how long this can last but have happily used mine over a few weeks. I merely top it up with olive oil each time.