Excuse the pun, but Sriracha is totally hot right now.
It's the bright red sauce that comes in the bottle with rooster logo on the front and the green squeeze top found on restaurant tables across the city, Lays even uses Sriracha as a flavoring in its potato chips.
Event: Click here for more info on the L.A. Sriracha Festival happening Oct. 27 from 3-6 p.m.
Now the spicy stuff is getting its own festival. The first annual Los Angeles Sriracha festival happens this Sunday. Festival cofounder and "The Sriracha Cookbook" author Randy Clemens joins the show with more.
Randy Clemens on the differenced between Sriracha here and in Thailand:
"The one most people know and love is the Huy Fong Foods version that's made here in SoCal. It's the one with the rooster on the bottle and the green cap, and I think that's what most people know as Sriracha. But there's actually Thai versions as well.
"There's a town in Thailand called Sriracha and it's made a little differently there. The one we have here is spicy. It's a fermented chili sauce that's got a little bit of garlic, sugar, salt and vinegar added. Same base ingredients there used in Thailand, but the version here is quite a bit thicker. It's used more as a condiment versus a dipping sauce, whereas in Thailand it's more of a dipping sauce. But essentially the recipe is the same but they use different peppers in Thailand and end up being a little different.”
On some of his favorite ways to use the sauce in his cooking:
"I think buffalo wings were kind of my first where I looked around and didn't really have more Frank's Red Hot and I thought, 'well I'll try Sriracha and that was kind of my first foray into it. As far as crazier, I've definitely had a lot of fun in the breakfast and dessert categories and even drinks. I've got a watermelon Sriracha sangria that's better than it should be."
On using Sriracha in desserts:
"The weirdest one is definitely the pineapple upside down cake and where you'd normally have the cherries, it's little puddles of Sriracha. I found some Fresno and serrano chiles and mixed those up and blended up a batch myself. there is a recipe in both books for how to make your own homemade Sriracha."
On what to expect from the Sriracha Festival:
"Beachwood BBQ and Brewing from Long Beach, besides pouring some of their beers, they will also have a Sriracha brazed and glazed spare rib with spicy sweet vegetable slaw. Gorrilla Tacos is going to be there and they're going to be making cauliflower, honey date, olive taco with cashew Sriracha salsa negro. Those are two of the dishes I'm excited about, but there are a bunch of others. Scoops is going to be there with ice cream the year. They're doing a lemongrass ginger Sriracha burnt sugar ice cream and a mango Sriracha sorbet.”
Burning Thai Bruschetta from "The Veggie Lover's Sriracha Cookbook
Makes 4 to 6 servings
• 8 ounces cherry tomatoes, halved lengthwise
• 3 green onions, white and green parts, sliced on the diagonal
• 2 tablespoons Sriracha
• 1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger
• 1 teaspoon light brown sugar
• 8 large leaves Thai basil, chiffonade
• Zest and juice of 1 large lime
• 2 teaspoons Bragg Liquid Aminos, or low-sodium soy sauce
• 4 large cloves garlic, peeled
• Salt and freshly ground black pepper
• 1 baguette
• Extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling
In a large, non-reactive bowl, mix together the tomatoes, green onions, Sriracha, ginger, brown sugar, basil, lime juice and Liquid Aminos. Mince 3 cloves of the garlic, and add them to the mixture. Season with just a pinch of salt and pepper. Cover and let sit at room temperature while you preheat the oven and prepare the baguette.
(This can be prepared up to 1 day ahead and stored in the refrigerator.)
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Slice the baguette into 1-inch thick slices on the diagonal.
Arrange the slices in a single layer on a baking sheet. Drizzle lightly with olive oil.
Toast in the oven until golden, but not quite brown, about 4 minutes. Remove from the oven, and scrape the remaining clove of garlic across the top of each warm slice of toast. The coarse texture of the just-crisped bread will actually act like a grater, getting little flecks of garlicky glory onto each piece.
Season the tomato mixture with additional salt and pepper, to taste. Give an additional stir and transfer to a serving bowl. Serve alongside the toasted baguette, allowing guests to spoon on their own tomato topping, family style.
We want to see your most creative or outrageous Sriracha recipes! Send us a recipe and we'll pick a winner at random to win 5 bottles of Sriracha hot sauce. Post your recipes in the comments, or find us on Facebook, Twitter, or email us at TakeTwoShow@scpr.org. Good luck!