Spicy Homemade Chili Oil

Here's a chance to make your very own chili oil! This summer I decided to try and see if I could grow chilies on my balcony. I don't have green thumbs, but somehow they stayed alive and even produced quite a lot of chilies! I've used my very first balcony chili harvest for my own chili oil - useful in dressings, drizzled over pizza, or even just left on the table to add a kick to any meal. 

Spicy Homemade Chili Oil

A handful of dried chilies
A few cups of good extra virgin olive oil

To dry your chilies, thoroughly wash them, then leave them in an airing cupboard or in a place where they won't be disturbed. I wrapped mine loosely in kitchen towel and leave them in a cupboard for a few weeks. Once they sounds hollow when knocked and are crunchy to the touch, they're ready. If they go mouldy, do not use! 

Once your chilies are dry, cut a few of them up and grind them with a pestle and mortar. You can also run them through a food processor to grind them up. Add your whole and ground chilies to a clean, sterilized bottle. Add your oil - enough to cover the chilies. Leave a few weeks to develop in flavor and spice level. Add more chilies to taste, and even add dried chili powder or flakes to bump up the spice.