This recipe was passed down by my grandpa and probably from grandpa of his. It is quite different from most hot sauces you find in the supermarkets, this sauce gives a tingly feeling in your mouth due to the Szechuan Peppers and it is super easy to make. This sauce can also be a base for various dishes originated in Szechuan or just to spice up your food.
Grandpa was born in Sichuan province, China and moved to Taiwan in 1950 when the air force of R.O.C. retreated from China.
This is a staple hot sauce in Sichuan and at home.
What is MALA?
“Mala”, is actually two words in Chinese: 麻辣 (ma2 la4)
麻Ma2 is a tingly feeling like your foot just went numb and someone is poking it.
辣La4 is spicy.
That explained this sauce a lot.
You can easily adjust the heat level with the chili you use.
I’m using crushed red peppers (that’s actually spicy and flavorful!) in this recipe, but you can easily use any dry chili you find in the supermarket. Since Mexican chilies are easily accessible here in the US, I’ve made this sauce with chili de arbol before and it turns out wonderfully.
Szechuan pepper is a bit harder to get, you might need to look for an Asian store or a serious spice shop (or Amazon). I bought mine at Market Spice in Pike’s Place, Seattle. It was a bit pricey but I cannot argue with the quality! It was some of the best Szechuan Pepper I’ve ever purchased (the only other one that could compare were the ones I bought in Szechuan).
You can grind the spices with a mortar and pestle by hand, tho it might take a while. The method is suggested if you’re just making a small amount, less than 1 cup of spices in total since it will be hard to blend in a blender. I remember the days when my mom made me grind ALL the Szechuan peppers before she makes hot sauce with them… those were long afternoons. But I love mortars and pestle! No matter where I move, I always have a set in the kitchen. Great for grinding fresh spices(essential for a good curry), pounding chili and garlic for Thai food and making a delicious guacamole.
Since I make this hot sauce in larger batches, I used my Vitamix to blend all the ingredient in this recipe.
We’ve been trying to live a minimal lifestyle, there isn’t a lot of appliances in our kitchen(no toasters!), and if I can only have one kitchen appliance besides stove and oven, it will definitely be a blender(or a rice cooker? uhoh I can’t decide), and mother-in-law happened to have a Vita Mix laying around and she gave it to me. Oh the things I can do with a blender! Smoothies, curry paste, juice, spice blends, salsa verde, radish cake!
I have a dry cup for my good-old VitaMix to blend all my spices in and it only takes seconds.
You can find the spice at your local Asian food store or I’ve collaborated with Gardenaire on a spice called “Red Robe of Sichuan” all you need to do is purchase it and add burning hot oil!
BUY IT HERE (Flavor: Red Robe of Sichuan)
- 1 C Chili flakes
- 1/2 C Szechuan Pepper
- 1/8 C Toasted sesame seeds Optional
- 1 Pinch of salt Pinch of salt
- 1 C Olive Oil or other vegetable oil
- Blend with a blender (or food processor)/ground with morta 1C Chilli Flake 1/2C Sichuan Pepper
- Sift out Sichuan Pepper shells, discard the shells
- Move powder into a jar
- Add 1/8C Toasted sesame seeds (OPTIONAL) Pinch of salt
- Heat up (till you see little ripples on the surface) 1C Olive oil
- Pour hot oil into the jar & mix well (enjoy the sizzle!)
COLLECTION OF MALA RECIPES:
TRY Mala Hot Sauce WITH:
台灣的正港 “死川忍” (我小時候覺得四川話很簡單，所有音都發三聲就是四川話了,不信你試試看)
- 用果汁機/石臼 磨成粉
- 1杯 辣椒粉/辣椒粒 (粗粒的那種)
- 1/2杯 花椒粒
- 用篩網過濾花椒殼 (白白的，口感不好)
- 1/8杯 熟芝麻
- 用鍋子加熱 (油會開始起波紋)
- 1杯 橄欖油
- 把熱油倒入罐子裡，攪拌均勻 (會發出讓人很舒服的滋滋聲喔!)