Zhoug

Updated: Jun 8, 2021


I love spicy food and hot sauces. I didn't used to like it until I traveled in South East Asia, especially Thailand, where my body and palate began to adapt to the heat introduced to the local cuisine. Every country and it's culinary culture has their own beloved 'Hot Sauce', you will find at every kitchen table and grocery shelf. In Israel and the Arabian Peninsula, it's Zhoug.

 
 

Originated in Yemen, finding it's way to the shores of Israel, through it's vibrant Yemenite community, Zhoug (or Zhug), quickly became Israel's most sought after hot sauce, and was soon embraced by the entire country as it's goto hot sauce option. Zhoug traditionally made with hot green chili peppers, cilantro (coriander), garlic and cumin. However there are many varieties and traditional recipes that may call for different spices such as caraway, cardamon and fenugreek.


Here I chose to share with you the basic Zhoug recipe which I use all the time, with sandwiches and hot plates. In Israel it is typically offered as an addition to the most familiar and beloved street food staples, the falafel, shawarma and sabich (warm eggplant and hard boiled egg) sandwiches, but also with numerous other plates and dishes.


So... Let's do this!

 

Ingredients:

  • 35g Cilantro bunch (coriander) stems and leafs included

  • 1 Serrano chilli

  • 2 Jalapeños

  • 1 Tsp ground cumin

  • 1 Tsp Fenugreek

  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed

  • ½ Tsp Sugar

  • 1-2 Tbsp Neutral oil (I used grapeseed)

  • Salt and pepper to taste

 

Now What...


Step 1

  • To a food processor add the the chilies (I use a combination of 2 jalapeños and 1 Serrano for a medium heat level).

  • Add the garlic cloves and the the cilantro

  • Add the spices and season with salt and pepper

  • Pulse to a coarse by smooth texture, similar to that of a pesto.

  • Check for seasoning

 

Step 2

  • Transfer to a sanitized jar

  • Add oil and mix well.

  • Using a small spoon taste and adjust seasoning as needed.

you can keep it in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.


Bon Appétit






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