Szechuan Chili Oil

Prepare a small saucepot with about 2c neutral oil, and start heating gently. Add aeromatics. Quantities are aproximate and very forgiving. Adjust according to taste. Heat to barely above boiling. Hot enough to get spices to bubble gently, but not brown significantly. Allow to gently bubble for about 1/2 hour.

Put about :

in heat shock resistant bowl. I usually add a couple of crused chile arbol or pequin for extra heat. I find the typical Chinese or Korean flakes to be rather mild.

Strain hot oil on to chili and stir. There should be enough oil such that about 1/4 of the oil is above the level of the chile in the bowl. Full flavor develops in a few days. Stable for a few months. Perhaps more in fridge.

Aaron Birenboim