The best part about making your own chile paste is avoiding those unnecessary preservatives and sulfites. I like to use chile paste to spice food up, but haven’t found much chile paste bottles out on the market that were free of sulfites, without added sugars, and tasted great (i.e. Whole 30 compliant). Fortunately homemade chile paste, very easy to make and this Paleo Sambal chile paste doesn’t require much cooking other than boiling liquid.
No wait, I retract. The best part about making your own chile paste is controlling how hot you want it! I do like it hot and very spicy! But not ridiculously spicy. Some chile loving restaurants would make their customers sign a waiver before trying some of their extreme spicy sauces. I could never get paperwork involved with my food, thus I’ve yet to sign a waiver for these atomic chile dishes. Oh I’m tempted to try, but I’m also too scared. I can’t handle that much hotness. 😀
But I can tell you why people love spice. Endorphins, the natural morphine receptors. There’s a science to it! Chiles produce a waxy compound called capsaicin which cause a burning sensation when contacted with cell membranes. In your belly, on your skin, in your eyeballs when you touch your face after handling peppers (wear gloves). In response to the pain your cells experience from the capsaicin burn, endorphins are released giving your brain a sense of euphoria similar to what you get from exercise, love, and…other things. (Ref).
Cool huh? Kind of masochistic in a way.
Running, Crossfit, romance novels, spicy food… I might be a bit of an endorphin junkie. In any case, Paleo chili paste is an awesome condiment to keep around and will keep you hot during the cold few months of the New Year. Better yet, this sulfite free and sugar free version will help you power through your Whole 30!
- 4-5 Dried Red Chiles
- ¼ cup of Lime Juice
- 1 Tablespoon of Vinegar
- 1 Tablespoon of Coconut Aminos
- ½ teaspoon of Salt
- (optional) pinch of Cayenne Pepper
- Remove the stems from the chile peppers and finely chop the chiles.
- Heat the lime juice and vinegar.
- Place seeds and chopped chile in a glass and add the heated lime juice and vinegar.
- Allow to steep for about a minute or two until the liquid turns color.
- Add the rest coconut aminos, salt, and cayenne.
- Blend until smooth.