1

I am preparing a spiced chili oil that I have to store at room temperature for specific reasons. The oil will be consumed within a week, and is stored in a relatively loose-fitting container and also is not filled up all the way, so I'd assume that would be sufficient to prevent botulism concerns (probably the other bacteria would be what I would be worried about more). I can't add vinegar (or any other acidic component) because it would not go well with the flavor of the oil. Is this mode of storage safe?

1
  • "not filled up all the way, so I'd assume that would be sufficient to prevent botulism concerns " - such assumptions show why food safety regulations are meant to be followed blindly to the letter. By trying to think it through, you're actually putting yourself in danger.
    – rumtscho
    Commented Feb 20 at 7:24

1 Answer 1

1

Yes, as long as it was made with only smoking hot oil, dried chilies or chili flakes, and dry spices.

The “loose-fitting container” is utterly immaterial. I guess you were thinking that that means there’d be oxygen in there, but the stuff at the bottom of the oil doesn’t know or care what gases are at the top of the oil.

But normal Sichuan chili oil is essentially dehydrated by the preparation process (and wasn’t wet to begin with), and maintained in that form by the fact that it is oil-based. (Also the pH is probably quite low.) It’s common to store it for a long time at room temperature. Nothing can grow in it. If there are spices floating on the top, eventually they might absorb enough humidity from the air to grow mold, but that is not a matter of weeks.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.