Hmong people simply call this dish pepper. It accompanies almost every meal, and it is never made exactly the same way twice. The basic recipe below can be served with any meal. Good chilies to use are the small red and green Thai ones. Hmong people like this condiment very hot, so the seeds are usually included.
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- 6 to 10 small hot chili peppers, chopped (more or less, depending upon desired heat)
- 4 green onions, white and green parts, chopped
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
- 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon MSG (or 2 teaspoons salt)
- 3 tablespoons fish sauce
- Juice of 1 large lime
- 1 to 2 teaspoons sugar
- 2 to 3 cloves garlic, chopped
- 2 to 3 Thai eggplants, chopped
- 2 tablespoons minced lemongrass
For a fine relish, chop or pound the herbs and vegetables. Add the seasonings and stir well. Or, to get the maximum flavor from the ingredients, use a mortar and pestle to pound everything together. If you are chopping a lot of chilies, or if your skin is sensitive, wear disposable gloves to keep the chilies from burning your skin.