Inspired by It's Alive with Brad Leone I picked up a copy of Firey Ferments from the library. The book is all about making fermented hot sauces of all kinds (and other spicy ferments, like horseradish and mustard).
I tried looking for a the recipe so I could just link it but alas there are a zillion variations of this, most of which are not fermented. This is pretty much the version from the book:
Hawaiian Chili Pepper Water
- 4-10 small hot peppers (I used 10 peppers, which were all varieties of Thai hot peppers, although some might have been cayenne)
- 1 clove garlic
- 2 slices ginger
- 1 pint mason jar
- 2 cups unchlorinated water, plus 1 tbsp salt (combine to make a brine)
- 1 tablespoon of rice vinegar
Peel garlic and ginger, remove stem end of peppers. Crush all ingredients with the back of a knife, and place in mason jar. Fill jar with brine, leaving 1 to 1 and a 1/2 inches of headspace. Screw jar lid tightly (no need to burp the ferment). Ferment for 1-2 weeks, until cloudy and it has a pickle like acidity. Add the rice vinegar. Keeps in the refrigerator for up to one year.
I just put it up tonight so I have no idea how it's going to turn out. It's quite a strong brine, but even after 5 minutes of it sitting there I could taste the freshness of the peppers in the water. I'm feeling pretty good about this one!