One of my very favorite condiments is chili garlic jam – it adds international intrigue to dishes.
Like a good spy novel it has you guessing just what’s going on in there. A little (or a lot) spicy, a little sweet, and a little garlicky, you can liven up any dish by adding a tablespoon or two of this fabulous concoction. Slathered onto ribs, as a base for stir-fries and curries, spooned over a block of cream cheese, stirred into sour cream, brushed onto grilled chicken or shrimp, as a marinade for meats and vegetables – the versatility of this condiment is almost endless.
While you can buy decent chili garlic paste, making it yourself allows you to control every aspect. And it’s not hard! If you can puree and simmer – you got this! While basic chili garlic pastes or jams consist of just dried chilies, garlic, oil, and some form of sugar, this recipe has a few more ingredients – but no worries, they are all easy to find. The Thai take on this recipe is hard to beat!
For richness and depth of flavor I use a combination of Wholesome Sweeteners Coconut Palm Sugar and Organic Sugar and for undertones of Thailand, I add tamarind concentrate or paste which you can find at any Asian market and most grocery stores in the International Foods aisle.
Just an aside, tamarind paste is great to have on hand should you ever decide to try your hand at making authentic Pad Thai at home. Fish sauce adds another level of richness and keeps the recipe soy free. For a spicier jam, leave the seeds in the chilies. For mild, scrape them out before processing. This jam will keep for up to two months refrigerated and makes for a lovely hostess gift when attending a barbecue at someone else’s home.
Gluten Free Thai Chili Garlic Jam Recipe
2 tablespoons grapeseed or vegetable oil
10 red chilies (such as Fresno chilies), chopped
12 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
2 medium yellow onions, chopped
1 (3 by 1 inch) piece fresh ginger
1½ cups Wholesome Sweeteners Coconut Palm Sugar
1 cup organic sugar
½ cup rice vinegar
¼ cup tamarind concentrate or paste
Zest of 4 limes
2 tablespoons fish sauce
Put the oil, chilies, garlic, onion, and ginger in a food processor or blender and puree. Pour the mixture into a heavy saucepan and add the sugars, vinegar, tamarind, lime zest, and fish sauce. Bring to a boil, stirring, to dissolve the sugars. Reduce heat and let the mixture simmer until it has reduced and thickened, about 25 minutes, stirring occasionally. Let cool (mixture will thicken more as it cools.) Store in covered jars or containers in the refrigerator for up to 2 months.
A gluten free recipe that makes about 2 cups of jam.
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