Lacto-fermented Hot Thai Chili Sauce

Lacto-fermented Hot Thai Chili

Tangy with a punch of heat. This hot Thai chili sauce is just what you need for your next Asain inspired meal!

This simple chili sauce was inspired by one I had at a Thai restaurant, which I discovered is quite similar to sambala popular sauce in Asia made from chilies, vinegar, and spices such as garlic. You can find it in many grocery stores in the States as well.

This sauce adds that perfect pop of flavor and bit of heat to your favorite dishes with the added benefit of being lacto-fermented. While the commercial sauces you find in the store use vinegar for the tang, it can be achieved naturally with whey and unrefined salt. As an added bonus, it is healthy for your gut too!

I’ll be the first to admit that I don’t get enough fermented foods in my diet. Simple little things like this lacto-fermented hot Thai chili sauce may not make all the difference in the world but every little bit helps!

For this recipe you can use a variety of red chilies depending on the flavor you want to achieve. Thai chilies pack on more heat but the recipe tastes equally good with jalapenos or serranos.

Drizzle it over Thai-inspired pizza, in a noodle soup for an added healing benefit, or to a yellow curry for an extra layer of heat!

Lacto-fermented Hot Thai Chili Sauce-www.

Lacto-fermented Hot Thai Chili Sauce

1 lb hot red chilies (Thai, Jalapeno, or Serano)
1/2 cup water
2 cloves garlic
2 TBS whey
1 tsp unrefined salt

Add all the ingredients into a blender. Blend on high until almost smooth.

Pour into a glass jar and screw a lid on. Leave on the counter or in a cupboard for three days.

Store in the refrigerator for several months.

Lacto-fermented Hot Thai Chili Sauce
  • 1 lb hot red chilies (Thai, Jalapeno, or Serano)
  • ½ cup water
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 TBS whey
  • 1 tsp unrefined salt
  1. Add all the ingredients into a blender. Blend on high until almost smooth.
  2. Pour into a glass jar and screw a lid on. Leave on the counter or in a cupboard for three days.
  3. Store in the refrigerator for several months.

What do you use hot chili sauce for?

London Fog Fauxccino


Can you tell I’m a huge fan of all things tea and coffee?

Although I’ve made many fauxccinnos over the years, I hadn’t yet turned my favorite winter drink — the London Fog — into one.

Move over London Fog — there’s a new kid in town: the London Fog Fauxccino.

This winter I’ve savored many mugs of Earl Grey London Fog Lattes and Earl Grey Mocha Lattes. Now that spring is here, I’m ready for a change!

The key to this drink is the ice cubes. Often, an iced drink will include ice, milk, tea/coffee, and sweetener — but the ice makes the drink watery as it melts. Instead, I made tea ice cubes, inspired by my coffee ice cubes.

Problem solved!

Join me at Traditional Cooking School, where I am sharing the recipe. 


12 Ways to Save Money on Coffee

12 Ways to Save Money on Coffee

Coffee, it’s a beautiful thing.

What is not to love? I generally have a cup or three every day.

Let’s be honest for some people, it is their life blood. Thankfully caffeine doesn’t wake me up which is why I can sit here at almost ten o’clock at night while drinking an iced mocha.

I didn’t come to love coffee until I was in my mid-20s. That first cup of recently roasted small batch, freshly ground coffee with a bit of coconut milk and raw honey won me over.

I have never looked back. That’s what happens when you start with the good stuff.

Since I enjoy the drink so much I realized that I needed to save money on coffee if I was going to continue to do so.

If you are like me these tips will come in handy, and allow you to keep your addiction (Uhm, your love of coffee) going without breaking the bank.

12 Ways to Save Money on Coffee

1. Buy Quality Bulk

You will generally save money if you buy a few pounds of coffee at a time. Many companies, especially smaller ones (at least in my experience) give you discounts for larger orders. For me, a bulk purchase of coffee is 5 pounds.

It is also an ethical issue for me. I will not buy coffee from a  company whose workers are not treated and paid fairly.

I think organic, far-trade coffee is amazing, it is always a good, ethical option. I tend to stick to small companies that use organic practices but aren’t yet certified (which can take several years and is very expensive) and where most of the money goes back to the farmers and workers.

When you stick with smaller companies you get to have at least a tiny peek into the lives of those who grew your coffee. Right now my personal favourites are Leiva’s and Hope Coffee. Sometimes I find an ethical brand on Amazon as well.

2. Grind Your Own

Even low-quality beans taste better is you grind your own beans. Sure it tastes a bit better if you grind it right before brewing. Really though if you grind a few days worth at a time and store it in a glass jar you aren’t going to notice, maybe be if you are an uber coffee snob…

You can buy a fancy grinder or you can get along just fine with an inexpensive one like me.

3. Roast Your Own Beans

This is my ultimate goal. The first time I had coffee from freshly roasted beans I thought I had died and gone to coffee heaven. It was SO good.

Do I roast my own right now? No. I do have green coffee beans from Honduras waiting for me buy a roaster or popcorn maker. (Elliot Homestead uses a popcorn maker.) Space to store another appliance is an issue right now.

I saved, at least, $2 per pound when I bought my green beans.

4. Drink the Leftover Coffee

Some of you may gag when you think of this suggestion buy I do it.all.the.time. Frequently I will use it for an iced coffee or a mocha.

12 Ways to Save Money on Coffee 3

5. Make Coffee Ice Cubes

Making coffee ice cubes is my favourite way to use leftover coffee. I keep a tray in the freezer and pull small out everytime I make a fauxcinno. They are perfect in iced “Dirty Chai” as well.

6. Cook with Coffee

If you have a little bit of coffee left, try adding it to a chili or other savory dish. Sometimes I will replace some of the liquid in a chocolate dessert with coffee to bring out the chocolate flavors.

7. Use a French Press

Many people are big time Keurig fans, there is a huge appeal with the convenience of making just one cup of coffee. Even if you have a reusable cup and add your own grounds, it is an expensive initial investment. Most regular coffee pots require you to use a new filter with each pot coffee you make.

The French Press really is the perfect option. It is comparable to the cost of a typical low-end model coffee maker. It is plastic free (which is very important to me). You never have to buy filters since it has it’s own built in.

The taste of coffee from a french press is incredible as well.

12 Ways to Save Money on Coffee 2

8. Make Your Own Creamer

If you are a black coffee fan then you can ignore this tip. Most creamers at the store are not even worth picking up off the shelf at the store. If they are, then you better believe they will not be inexpensive.

My Favourite Homemade Creamers:

9. Clean Your Grinder

I’m not going to lie, I am so bad about this. The oils and dust from the grounds build up and over time impart an off taste to your coffee.

Off taste= bad coffee= throwing coffee out

If you are like me and you grind your dehydrated liver (hello liver pills) and herbs in your coffee grinder you are really going to want to clean it out so that liver taste doesn’t affect the perfection of the coffee.

10. Order Simple Drinks

I am a big believer in spending your money on the ingredients to make coffee drinks at home instead of buying them out. Yet sometimes you are out with a friend, maybe you are working at a coffee shop, or you are running errands and you really want a coffee.

It’s okay to give yourself that freedom sometimes. When I get a coffee out I try to stick to basic drinks like a black coffee or an iced coffee and just add some half and half. I’ve even been known to carry a bottle of stevia in my purse…

That way I can enjoy being out and having an occasional coffee but don’t find myself paying $4+ for a cup of coffee.

(In all honesty I do buy mochas out from time to time, especially when it’s an Organic, Fair-trade shop.)

11. Make Your Own Fancy Hot Drinks At Home

Now this one only applies if you get coffee out. I am a huge fan of fancy coffee drinks. My body doesn’t like them because of all the sugar but I am all about making my own (if you didn’t already know).

Even when using high-quality ingredients like raw milk, and I pay almost $15/gallon for it in the Central Valley still costs me less than a drink at the average coffee shop. I don’t have an exact breakdown for you at this moment. 

Fancy Coffee Shop Drinks to Make at Home

12. Cut Back

How many cups of coffee in a day do you really need? Of course, this comes from the woman who is sipping on a mocha at almost 9:30 at night. I range from one to three cups a day but I have been know to drink about five…

This may be stepping on toes but I am of the opinion that coffee should not me drank for long term help for need. I am blessed to be one of those crazy people that can drink coffee at midnight and half asleep with no issues, hence the copious amounts of coffee.

I see coffee as a simple pleasure to be savored and enjoyed. Instead of gulping back several cups in a day limit yourself to just two (because if you are like me, I have a hard time having just one).  Over time it adds up, and you find yourself anticipating that cup or two all the more.

Try adding in things like a basic cup of Earl Grey tea or warm vanilla lemonade, which is my favourite way to start my day. Over time it adds up, and you will probably find yourself looking forward to those two cups if you don’t gulp back several a day.

What are your tips to save money on coffee?


London Fog Latte

London Fog Earl Grey Latte

Light, yet creamy and delicious.

Let me introduce you to the London Fog Latte, also known as an Earl Grey tea latte. Hot Earl Grey tea is blended with frothy almond milk, raw honey, and vanilla extract. It’s pretty much heaven in a cup.

I started drinking this delicious drink about a year ago when I saw it on a blog or in a shop somewhere, I can’t remember now. What I do know is that this delightful cup of goodness has found a special spot in my tea loving heart.

I have a confession to make, I went 30 years not putting milk in my tea. I could not stand the taste! That’s because I was using dairy milk, as soon as I tried almond milk I was in love. I have no idea why, I enjoy heavy cream in my morning coffee but I can not stand it in my tea. That’s okay, I’ll save my dairy for coffee and hot cocoa.

The London Fog is said to have originated in the Pacific Northwest, nowhere near the London England like I first assumed. It actually endears me to it all the more since I have so many friends “up north”.

A London Fog Latte is the perfect way to celebrate early spring, though I tend to drink it all year round. Now that I make my own Earl Grey tea, my french press has been known to hold tea leaves instead of coffee grinds. What can I say, a cup of tea and a good book like “Little Women” get me every time…

“You can never get a cup of tea large enough or a book ling enough to suit me.”

~C.S. Lewis

I use orange blossom honey because it is simply amazing, as an added bonus it blends well with the citrus notes of the Bergamot.

London Fog Latte

London Fog Latte

2 bags (or 2 tsp) Earl Grey Tea
1 cup hot water
1/3 cup almond milk (or milk of choice)
1 tsp raw honey
1/4 tsp vanilla extract

Bring the water to a boil and pour over the tea. Allow to steep for 5 minutes. Meanwhile heat the almond milk.

Remove the tea leaves (bags), stir in the raw honey and vanilla extract.

Froth the milk with a milk frother is desired and pour into the tea.

London Fog Latte
Serves: 1 mug of tea
  • 2 bags (or 2 tsp) Earl Grey Tea
  • 1 cup hot water
  • ⅓ cup almond milk (or milk of choice)
  • 1 tsp raw honey
  • ¼ tsp vanilla extract
  1. Bring the water to a boil and pour over the tea. Allow to steep for 5 minutes. Meanwhile heat the almond milk.
  2. Remove the tea leaves (bags), stir in the raw honey and vanilla extract.
  3. Froth the milk with a milk frother is desired and pour into the tea.

Have you ever tried a London Fog Latte?


White Hot Chocolate (Inspired by The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe)


Rich and creamy, this dairy-free white hot chocolate transports you to the land of Narnia.

As winter melts into spring I can’t help but to think of the magical land of Narnia as it was right before Aslan returned, in The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe. It was a cold and bleak place, with no hope for the future, a world of never ending winter.

Edmund followed his sister Lucy through the wardrobe, unable to find her, he found himself alone and cold in the snowy woods.

To his surprise a “Queen” better known as the White Witch pulled up beside him in her sleigh. Once she realized he was a “son of Adam” she changed from harsh creature to a flattering and almost nurturing type. Despite Edmund’s trepidations he was beguiled but the promise of warmth, a hot drink, Turkish delight, and ultimately a kingdom.

Edmund felt much better as he began to sip the hot drink. It was something he has never tasted before, very sweet and foamy and creamy, and it warmed him right down to his toes

~C.S. Lewis, The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe 


I always wished that I could be Edmond just for a few minutes so I could savor the delicious, hot drink and Turkish Delight too!  It left me wondering what that very sweet and foamy and creamy could possibly be.

It couldn’t be classic hot cocoa since that was already popular in England. It occurred to me that it very well could be a white hot chocolate, which is oh so creamy, and not commonly drank at that time.

Join me at The Nourishing Gourmet for the recipe.

White Hot Chocolate (Inspired by The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe)