UNIVERSITY OF PENNSYLVANIA - AFRICAN STUDIES CENTER
"HOT AFRICAN DEVIL PEPPERS"
You can also substitute Chile Pequins. Basically, both of these are very hot, tiny little dried red peppers about 1/4 to 1/2 inch long. Use a good quality Spanish or Portuguese olive oil, if possible. Otherwise, just select a good quality Italian or Greek olive oil. The seeds won't swell up much. You can also just put the whole dried peppers in there. The ratio of peppers to oil has more to do with how hot you want it. The longer you soak, the hotter it will be. At the end of the soak- preparation, it makes a seasoned oil-like "sauce" that is quite spicy. If you use whole peppers, you might want to put it in the food processor to make it more "sauce"-like.
The Portuguese cookbook I have at home suggests Piri-Piri Shrimp. All they do is marinate the shrimp in the sauce and then cook them outdoors. I suppose you would use the same procedure for chicken. The same cookbook also adds kosher salt and cider vinegar to their piri-piri:
2 to 6 (or more) dried hot red peppers (depending on hotness and personal taste), 1 t kosher or course salt, 1 c olive oil, 1/3 c cider vinegar.
They chop the peppers then mix them with everything else in a 1-pint shaker jar, cover tightly, shake, and store at room temperature. They claim the sauce will keep well for a month (but with hot peppers and vinegar, I'm sure it would probably last indefinitely). Shake the sauce every time you use it. [Note: This is an American cookbook, so t=teaspoon, c=cup.]
Another historical note: The piri-piri peppers were brought from Brazil (Portuguese New World settlement) to Angola (Africa). The peppers became so integral to the local cuisine, that they became known as "Angolan peppers." From there they made their way to Portugal. Piri- piri can simply be thought of as Portuguese hot pepper sauce.
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