Let me make an admission: I’m a condiment girl through-and-through. I probably make pesto once a week, and I’m never gonna say no to a hummus situation. It’s these little things that can take a basic dish (or that clean-out-your-fridge stir fry or scramble) and really elevate it to new heights. Case in point: this chile crisp (also known as the crack condiment). I got back to my apartment after being away this past weekend, and found myself with shallots, garlic, cauliflower rice, and assorted veggies on hand, and not much else. I whipped up a batch of this chile crisp (note: I halved the recipe), and tossed it with a saute of cauli rice, greens, and two soft-boiled eggs. While this not a remotely interesting base on its own, the chile crisp made this an out-of-this-world dish. It’s a cinch to make, can be stored in the refrigerator for one month (although trust me, it won’t last that long), and ups the ante on frittatas, scrambles, salads, roasted veggies… you name it. Read on for the newest player in my condiment rotation.
Makes 2 cups
Bring shallots, garlic, oil, cinnamon, and star anise to a simmer in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Cook, reducing heat as needed to maintain a gentle simmer and swirling pot occasionally, until garlic and shallots are browned and crisp, 20–25 minutes. (Take your time—you want to drive all the moisture out before they brown.)
Mix ginger, red pepper, soy sauce, and sugar in a medium bowl. Strain shallot mixture through a fine-mesh sieve set over ginger mixture. Let garlic and shallot cool in sieve (this will allow them to crisp further) before stirring back into chile oil.
Note: Crisp can be made 1 month ahead. Cover and chill.
Original recipe can be found here.