Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Condiment of the Week: Huy Fong Chili Paste

I spent New Year's Eve away from Hun, and I had a lot of time on my hands to wallow in singleton habits: namely watch really cheesy horror movies, eat junk food, and drink champagne. I noticed two startling aspects in my life in fuzzy, champagne-induced, relief: (1) I should figure out something to regularly blog about other than the crappy Upstate weather, (2) we had a shitload of condiments in our fridge.

I vowed that night to feature one condiment "chilling out" in our kitchen each week. Thus, Condiment of the Week was born.

This week I am choosing a PMS fave of mine: Huy Fong (or Rooster) Chili Paste. To say that I've used three jars of this since I've graduated college is saying something for a cowgirl like me. It's ground chilis marinated in oil, (sometimes garlic), and vinegar. It is finame without setting fire to your tongue (well, not if you add too much). From soup to salmon, I love to use it on almost anything.

I usually add it with soups and with dips. I love it in pho, a dirt-cheep and amazingly delicious Vietnamese noodle soup. I love to add it with soy sauce, along with a little sugar, to dip dumplings in. I use it on stir fry.

But my number one favorite use is with Ramen and sesame oil as a PMS-craving delight. I boil up some Ramen (I prefer the oriental flavor), and leave a little bit of water and all the noodles in a soup mug. I add the high-sodium packet of flavoring, toss in a couple of drops of sesame oil, and a few teaspoons of the chili paste. I got my roommates hooked on it while I was attending grad school.

I swear, if you are on the cusp of aunt Flo coming to town, the above combination could save your relationship with your significant other, hankies, and wasted bitchiness that could be set to more productive uses. At the minimum, it will help clear out your sinuses.

This week, I give a shout out to Huy Fong and his (her?) culinary contribution to condiment world.

9 comments:

tNb said...

Now, for a singleton who tends to rely on popcorn for dinner this may be a culinary stretch ... but now I feel compelled to find myself a jar of Huy Fong's finest. At least the rest of my neglected condiments will have some good company. ;-)

Cowgirl Betty said...

Oh you will not regret it . . .

Kimchihead said...

This stuff is tasty, but not very hot. I used to drink the stuff. ;-)

Daddy Papersurfer said...

I'm going to look through my drawers ........ now!

Rybu said...

I love the new look!

Anonymous said...

Looking into the frig can be frightening...I have approximately 5 kinds of salsa lurking in various,and often hidden, spaces: Paul Newman's Own, Harry & David mango, H&D olive, Pace (of course), oh yeah...Costena (with atilde sp? N) and of course there's jalapeno tampenade...maybe even some others.hmm..time to clean heffer

Cowgirl Betty said...

Kimchihead: Drink the stuff? Whoohoo!! You are more of a condiment cowboy than I thought! Eat habineiros for breakfast, washed down with a mild cup of Tobasco? ; ) You would greatly appreciate my mother (heiffer)

DP: I think there are more comfortable places to store your chili paste than in your drawers--it might chafe...

rybu: thank you, still dusting off the shelves, though . . .

Heiffer: no wonder I have so many condiments in my fridge--like mother like daughter!

Anonymous said...

uh,oh...I also found a jar of pineapple ginger chutney (great with pork loin!) heffer

Anonymous said...

...er...uh...also some jamaican jerk paste (great with almost anything that's not dessert)...what's a well seasoned ol' barn animal to do, but experiment with various flavors?
heffer