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Chef Vikas Seth Of Sanchez & Sriracha Shares His Top 5 Must-Try Hot Sauces

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Chef Vikas Seth, Culinary Director, Embassy Leisure shares his favourite, must try hot sauces that he’s always incorporating in his, Mexican and Asian recipes! 

Before we dive in, here’s a brief on hot sauce - made from chili peppers and used in a variety of ways, hot sauce is served along with food as a condiment or as a protein marinade or even in fresh salsa. This has been a staple across multiple cuisines, and in my experience adds a layer of flavour and depth to various delicacies. The heat can more often than not make the flavour composition of your dish. What gives hot sauce a balance of flavour is that it covers all flavour profiles: salty, sweet, sour, bitter & umami. The five sauces I have chosen for you have as many of these notes, if not all. Get ready to have your taste buds tickled!

Huy Fong Sriracha Hot Chili Sauce/Rooster Sauce

Huy Fong Sriracha Hot Chili Sauce

660

This is a versatile table sauce that can add zest, intensity & heat to any dish, without overpowering the original taste. The flavour profile of this sauce is high on spice & umami rich. Predominantly accompanying Asian cooking, this sauce can also be used to add a hint of spice to sandwiches, as a marinade to grill protein or as a dipping sauce for a variety of appetisers. 

La Costena Chipotle Peppers in Adobo Sauce

Chipotle Peppers

299

One of my favourites, this Mexican sauce, adds a smoky warmth, not only to Mexican food. The most popular Mexican chili pepper in the world, the chipotle pepper or plum jalapeno is slow smoked, to mellow out their heat & canned in an adobo sauce made of tomato, vinegar, and onion. I call this sauce a flavour bomb, it can uplift any preparation, adding layers of heat, with a hint of sweetness, finish of smoke and a smack of tartness from the tomato, I often refer to it as Ketchup’s older sibling, as it comes close with an extra hit of spice. This sauce is primarily used for marinating protein but can also add a twist to stews, zing to burgers or an extra dynamism to a pilaf. 


Sprig Bhoot Jolokia

Bhut Jolokia Sauce

349

The world-renowned Bhoot Jolokia chili from India has made its mark for its spice level and is the hero of this hot sauce, while less spicy than the chili itself this sauce packs a punch. It can be used as a flavouring agent to add a layer of heat or intensify the pungency of various dishes, from curries to chutneys and pickles as well. Most commonly brought out in a hot sauce challenge, this is my recommendation for those spicy food fanatics, be sure to handle with care & eat at your own risk.

Sprig Habanero Sauce

Habanero Sauce

349

This sauce is made using the spiciest Mexican chili, the habanero chili. While it has a kick, it also has a complexity of flavour, and subtle floral notes, tingling your taste buds with a lingering sharpness. Use this sauce to add zest to Mexican favourites like tacos, quesadillas & burritos or drizzle a bit to break the monotony of a cheesy pizza.

Lee Kum Kee Char Siu Sauce

Char Siu Sauce

265

This sauce has a well-balanced flavour; a salty and sweet contrast with a hint of spice made using fermented soya bean paste, honey, soy & spices. An Asian go to sauce, this has a lush, honeyed taste and is a favourite as both a marinade and a finishing sauce to add a layer of flavour once dishes are completely cooked as well. Commonly used to make the well-known Char Siu Pork Belly. 

Pro-Tip

#LBBRecommends: Our resident hot sauce aficionado, Sreepathy Paliath shares the best hot sauces to have in the kitchen. The more, the merrier, right?

Inputs by Chef Vikas Seth