Batch 23 Fermented Hot Sauce Update #2

By Published On: November 8th, 20231.6 min readCategories: Projects

Two additions of fresh cayenne peppers in the past two weeks

A large jar of cayenne peppers fermenting in brine

Additions 2 and 3 of fresh peppers has the first jar nearly at capacity

Author’s Note: Every year since 2001, I’ve made a slow fermented hot sauce from a unique Cayenne hot pepper we’ve grown here since the early 1990’s. The hot sauce takes around six months to finish and, like wine and other fermented foods, each vintage is a little different from the other. Sometimes it’s good and sometimes it’s bad. I write these notes to track the progress and hope I learn how to produce more good than bad.

Despite the late start to this year’s edition of fermented hot sauce, things are doing pretty well.

Even though the nights are cooling into the low 40s and upper 30s, the days have been warm (70s and 80s) and the Hidden Lake Hot cayenne peppers continue to flower and fruit. As a result, I’ve been able to harvest 8 to 12 ounces of fresh peppers and add them to the fermenter each of the past couple of weeks, giving us about 1 full gallon of fermenting (future) hot sauce.

A bowl of freshly picked cayenne peppers

Today’s cayenne pepper addition (ignore the mini bells, Those are for chili).

Looking at my notes from last year, we had about 1 gallon of peppers fermenting at this time as well. The biggest difference is that last year’s Batch 22 had been running for nearly three months by this point in November. This year’s has only been going for two weeks.

Fortunately, the long range weather forecast shows a warm end to the month which (hopefully) means we’ll still have more peppers to add for at least another four weeks. So, maybe the late start won’t have as big an impact on Batch 23 as I feared.

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About the Author

author avatar
Sage Osterfeld
I’m just a guy with nearly an acre of dirt, a nice little mid-century ranch house and a near-perfect climate. But in my mind I’m a landscaper survivalist craftsman chef naturalist with a barbeque the size of a VW and my own cable TV show. I like to write about the stuff I build, grow and see here at Sage's Acre.

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