Chinese Pantry, Ingredients

“La Gan Ma” aka Spicy GodMother

La Gan Ma is a type of brand of chili oil, which my family and I always have on hand. Inside the chili oil is fermented black beans and chili. You can either just use the oil, or use the ingredients inside as well. It’s great for sauces, dressings, and soups, especially wonton soup when you need a kick.

We usually make our own secert family chili oil. I can’t tell you what it is because my brother will kill me if I do.

Here is a basic recipe that you can make your own

  • 1 1/4 cups canola oil
  • 2 tbsp dried red chilies
  • 1 tbsp whole unroasted Sichuan peppercorns
  • 2 tbsp fermented black beans

Heat the wok with the oil. When it is very hot and slightly smoking, turn the heat to low. Add the chilies, peppercorns and black beans and cook gently for about 15 minutes. It’s okay if the chilies turn a little black, you want that. It’s flavor baby!

Allow the mixture to cool and then pour it into a jar. Leave it to stand for tow days then strain the oil. It will keep indefinitely.


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