I misread a fermentation recipe and ended up putting a pile of chopped chilli peppers in a jar of vinegar with huge helpings of rock salt. It’s been left overnight, unrefrigerated.

Can I recover this into some kind of hot sauce?

  • 1
    Do you have approximate measures of how many chillies and how much vinager and salt did you use? Commented Nov 3, 2017 at 10:28
  • About 200ml vinegar and 3 heaped tablespoons of salt.
    – jl6
    Commented Nov 3, 2017 at 12:12

4 Answers 4


This sounds like it would be an excellent condiment on deli-style sandwiches, serving a similar role to giardiniera. Just make sure to be careful with portioning, as vinegar/salt/spicy is a combination of flavors that could easily take over if you use too much.


Some ideas:

  • Use it in small quantities for any preparation that requires a mild chilli kick and acidity. For example, when making homemade Mayo we use a teaspoon of vinager to stabilize the emulsion. The quantity of salt in one teaspoon will not be drastic neither. I have made chilli mayo in the past and is lovely to go with fries or meat. Another idea is to use a couple of spoons to poach eggs. Sure, it will take a bit of work to finish 200ml this way.

  • A beautiful recipe that requires around 50g (so 1/4 of your prep) is Sicilian Caponata.

  • Make fresh cheese. If you make a batch with 3-4 L of fresh milk, you will probably need that much vinegar and salt in the recipe. Don't worry with acidity or saltness because most of that stay in the whey which you strain after. The chilli will definitively go well with that.


Not much. It's going to be too salty to be a hot sauce, you could try and sieve out the solid pieces of chili and re-use them, I don't imagine you're going to get a good result from that as they'll already have lost flavor. I can't think of that many applications, you'd use it whenever you need very salty, vinegary chili.


Carolina Barbecue Sauce. North Carolina is known for its spicy, vinegar based sauce. All you need to do is add a little ketchup, and some brown sugar and maybe dilute with some more vinegar. Look up a recipe and adjust based on what you’ve already added, and adjust to taste.

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