Reprinted with permission from Pok Pok: Food and Stories from the Streets, Homes, and Roadside Restaurants of Thailand by Andy Ricker with JJ Goode. Copyright 2013. Published by Ten Speed Press, a division of Random House. All rights reserved. Available wherever books are sold.
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons distilled white vinegar, preferably a Thai brand
- 1/2 cup water
- 21 grams fresh or drained pickled red Thai chiles, coarsely sliced
- 1 1/4 ounces peeled garlic cloves, halved lengthwise
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
Combine the sugar, vinegar, and water in a medium pot and set it over high heat. Bring to a vigorous simmer and cook for 10 minutes or so, whisking to help dissolve the sugar.
Meanwhile, pound the chiles, garlic, and salt in a granite mortar (or pulse in a food processor) to a very coarse paste. Stir the mixture into the pot.
Decrease the heat to maintain a steady simmer and cook until the liquid thickens slightly and becomes just slightly syrupy, 8 1o 12 minutes. The sauce will thicken as it cools. Let it cool to room temperature.