Sichuan Red Chile Oil
This ruby red chile- and spice-infused oil is a key ingredient in all kinds of Sichuan dishes. Alice Kim
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This ruby red chile- and spice-infused oil is a key ingredient in all kinds of Sichuan dishes. See Matt Gross’s article See Matt Gross’s article Flavors of Sichuan for information on hard-to-find ingredients. This recipe first appeared in our March 2013 issue along with Matt Gross’s story Capital of Heat.

Sichuan Red Chile Oil (Hong You) Sichuan Red Chile Oil (Hong You)
This ruby red chile- and spice-infused oil is a key ingredient in all kinds of Sichuan dishes.
Yield: makes ABOUT 2 CUPS

Ingredients

  • 2 cups canola oil
  • 4 star anise
  • 3 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 3 cao guo (black cardamom pods)
  • 3 whole cloves
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 stick cinnamon, broken in half
  • 1 (3″) piece ginger, smashed
  • 1 cup (about 32) chiles de arbol, stemmed and chopped
  • 3 tbsp. Sichuan peppercorns
  • 1 tbsp. light soy sauce
  • 12 tsp. kosher salt

Instructions

  1. Heat oil, star anise, garlic, cardamom, cloves, bay, cinnamon, and ginger in a 2-qt. saucepan over medium heat; cook, stirring occasionally, until garlic is golden, 15-20 minutes. Transfer to a 1-qt. glass jar with chiles, peppercorns, soy, and salt; let cool to room temperature. Using a slotted spoon, remove and discard garlic and ginger; seal jar and let sit at least 24 hours. To use, strain oil, discarding solids. Store refrigerated up to 3 months.

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