Truth: I have an embarrassing collection of hot sauce in my fridge. Of course I have all of the usuals: Frank’s, Crystal, Cholula… But then I have the oddballs: TJ’s Yuzu Hot Sauce (not to be missed!), chipotle pepper sauce I used all of one time for a random taco recipe, habañero hot sauce that I’m not sure anyone actually likes, and something that may or may not have come from the airport in Jamaica. Is this at all familiar to you? If hot sauce is your thing (and hey, maybe even if it’s not), this is the recipe for you.
Originally from Yemenite, you’ll now find schug on just about every table in Israel. It’s like hot sauce meets chimichurri, and I don’t think I can come up with a better combination than that. Raw green chiles, tons of fresh herbs and lemon juice make this sauce unbelievably bright and fresh. Garlic adds a savory factor, while ground cardamom brings its distinct warm-spicy flavor with just a hint of sweetness. It’s a perfect balance.
My version scales back on the traditional 20 chiles, but it still packs a punch! Perfect on grilled proteins and vegetables, sandwiches, grain bowls— you name it. Schug is officially my sauce of the summer, and I plan to eat it on everything. Trust me— don’t skip this one!
Adapted from Michael Solomonov’s recipe, first featured in Zahav*.
Makes about 1 ½ cups.
- 10 serrano chiles, stems removed
- 1 cup parsley leaves
- 1 cup cilantro leaves
- 2 garlic cloves, root ends removed
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1 teaspoon ground cardamom
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- ½ cup canola oil
In a food processor, combine the chiles, herbs, garlic, salt, spices and lemon juice. Pulse until a coarse paste forms. Transfer the mixture to a large bowl and stir in the oil. The resulting sauce will be a little broken. Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a month!
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