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Make It: Chili Pepper Aioli

Posted Jun 01 2010 12:45pm

To go with the Chipotle-inspired salad I concocted last week, I made a makeshift dressing with some dried peppers I got for my bday from my dear friend Taylor.

I knew the chili peppers would go well with the other flavors in the salad, I just needed a way to get the peppers into a more manageable form. The first thing I thought to do was throw it in my food processor. But with what? Well, to make it a dressing, it had to be an oil. Olive oil was my best bet.

To prepare them for processing, I cut up the peppers and removed most of the seeds (which is where the spiciness is!). Be careful when you’re handling spicy peppers. Wear gloves or wash your hands frequently and do not, under ANY circumstances, touch your face while you’re working with them! After cutting the peppers into smaller pieces, into the processor they went.

I added about half a cup of olive oil total, a few tablespoons at a time. Start with a few glug and then as the peppers get processed, stop to scrape the sides with a spoon and add a few tablespoons more olive oil. I also added some salt at the end. This is what it ends up looking like:

It’s perfect for adding a little kick to salads, rubbing on meat or fish, or adding to guac or homemade salsa. And the best part? It took less than 5 minutes to make! Most aiolis also contain garlic and some have egg for texture, so if you want to bulk yours up, try adding those.

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