All the bottles chili oils I’ve tried are dull, often have added flavoring and food coloring, and taste weird to me. Additionally, none that I’ve found have the numbing effect of the Szechuan peppercorn – which is the best part of Dan Dan Noodles. We’re going to have to make this from scratch. The good news is this is very fast and easy to make. The bad news is you may have to source your peppercorns from an asian market or the internet.
If you’ve never had Asian style chili oil it can be deceiving. Dried red chilis aren’t exactly comparable to your typical Mexican style hot sauce. I mean, you could certainly make this chili oil from tabasco or habanero chilis but that would be nuts. The heat is mild and catches up to you on the back end. The Szechuan peppercorns make your mouth all tingly and numb and it’s freakin amazing.
I’ve used a mix of green and red peppercorns but you could use one or the other. Green is a little more floral than red. You’ll also want to source Korean Chili Flakes. They don’t have as many seeds which I prefer texturally.
There’s one really, really important safety concern here – we’re cooking with hot oil. Make sure your container is going to be okay with super hot oil. I recommend a Mason Jar. If you’re going to use a funnel, make sure it’s made out of metal (not plastic like my roommate once did making cannabis oil). If you’re at all worried about the container, put it on a high rimmed sheet pan or in your sink before you pour.
Just be carefully and pour with confidence. And maybe have a fire extinguisher handy. Cause your mouth is gonna be screamin for more fire!! WHOOOWZA!!
Szechuan Chili Oil
- 1/2 cup vegetable oil
- 1/4 cup chili flakes
- 2 tsp freshly ground szechuan peppercorns
- 1 tsp salt
- Add all spices to a mason jar or other heat proof container.
- Heat oil in a pan over medium low heat.
- Just before it starts to smoke, remove it from heat and pour in to container.
- Allow container to cool to room temp for at least 30 minutes.