chili pepper vinegar
photograph by Matt Hulsman

Yield: 4 cups.

4 cups apple cider vinegar
3 tablespoons sugar
2 teaspoons salt
20-30 small red and green chili peppers

Use only glass bottles with screw tops or cork toppers. Wash bottles thoroughly and wipe dry. In a saucepan, heat vinegar, sugar, and salt, stirring occasionally, until sugar dissolves. Simmer for 10 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to cool.

Wash peppers and pat dry. For a milder version, cut peppers lengthwise and remove seeds. (Note: Always use rubber gloves when working with hot peppers.) For hot pepper vinegar, remove tops of peppers and pierce, leaving seeds in place.

Add 10 to 15 peppers to each bottle. Using a funnel, add vinegar mixture to bottles and secure lids. Store in refrigerator and enjoy for up to 4 months.

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Lynn Wells is a personal chef with more than 20 years of experience in the food and hospitality industry and a degree in Nutrition Management from UNCG.