Torrisi's Spicy Sauce

"This sauce is the invention of Rich Torrisi and Mario Carbone, of Torrisi Italian Specialties in NYC, and is all over the food blogs (Pinterest, Food52 just to name a few). What drew my attention is that Food52 mentioned jarring it and giving as gifts... What a fab idea! I didn't realize I'd fall in love myself and have to triple the recipe! It's a creamy, spicy, heavenly spread that lends itself to a million things - roasted meats and chicken, eggs in any form (fried, scrambled, fritatta), tossed with grilled shrimp to top a salad (or for an appetizer), stirred into cooked greens or a soups - stews - beans. Serve as a dip with toasted pita or a rustic corn chip, or even use as a sandwich spread. The uses are endless, and delicious. This sauce will keep up to 6 months in the fridge, if it lasts that long.... Enjoy!"
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Ready In:
2 cups


  • 4 ounces pickled peppers
  • 2 ounces roasted red peppers
  • 1 ounce tomato paste (or 2 oz. crushed tomato for a looser, thinner version of the sauce)
  • 14 cup olive oil (extra-virgin is always best)
  • 14 teaspoon red chili pepper flakes
  • 14 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 14 teaspoon sugar (I prefer brown, but white is fine too)
  • salt (please taste the sauce first, many pickled peppers are plenty salty!)
  • 1 tablespoon garlic, minced (not in the original recipe, but I love the extra dimension it adds)


  • When it comes to the pickled peppers, B and G hot cherry peppers are suggested by Torrisi, although the pickled jalapenos from the grocery store would be great too. Throw in a chipotle pepper for a smoky version of the sauce. Play with it!
  • Combine all ingredients in a food processor or blender, and mix until desired texture is reached. Torrisi's makes it "slightly smooth" -- I like mine pureed quite finely.
  • If jarring for edible gifts, I like to use the jam jars that allow you to insert a small square of fabric (I like using red-checked gingham, since it looks so Italian) and a tag with the recipe or a list of sauce uses.

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I am a married cruise-only travel agent with two stepsons, aged 20 and 25. It took a while to get the boys used to my cooking, as they were raised on fast food and pre-packaged foods (i.e. mac-n-cheese from the blue box, frozen dinners, Chef Boyardee, McDonalds, etc.). My mother is from Spain and I lived there as well as Germany, England and Italy growing up, which influenced both my career and my cuisine!</p> 8726943"
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