January 2013

Joy from Seaspring Seeds has been in touch to draw our attention to their challenge they are running with their world famous Chilli variety, the Dorset Naga. Now everyone wants the best yeild from their Chilli plants but can you beat Joy and Michael?

Heres Joy to explain all:

THE CHALLENGE: How many chillies can YOU grow on one Dorset Naga plant?

In 2011 we picked 781 chillies off the Dorset Naga plant at the bottom of the page, and last year we counted 766 chillies on another plant (see video below).

But we think we can do better.

This year we are aiming for 1,000 ripe chillies!

We will grow our plant in a large pot using peat-free municipal compost. It will be kept well watered and given plenty of fertiliser. The plant will have as much natural light as possible and be kept in warm conditions throughout its life – heated greenhouse when young, then in a polytunnel from April onwards. Can we get a thousand chillies on one plant? We will see.

Can you do better?


We challenge all chilli growers to see who can get the most red chillies off one Dorset Naga plant. The winner will get £15 worth of seeds. BUT if you get more chillies on your plant than we do we will double the prize to £30 of seed.

The plant can be grown from seed or a plug plant, but it MUST be a Dorset Naga, so if you didn’t get the seed from us you will have to tell us where the seed came from, and convince us it really is Dorset Naga (there are a lot of fakes around). Older plants, i.e. ones that are more than a year old are not accepted in the challenge.

Any growing method can be used, i.e. it can be grown hydroponically, in a pot or in the ground. Fruit can be picked regularly, or all at the end of the season.

This competition is based on trust. Keep records, take photos, do a video.

End date is 15th November 2013.



It’s always an exciting time here at Chilefoundry HQ when we receive new ranges of Chilli products in for review, especially with the influx of new Companies selling and promoting their wares. January is a popular time for us to receive product due to the lull before the new Chilli season starts in earnest.

chilli wizardsWe have received some of the product range from Chilli Wizards, Simpsons Seeds and the complete range from Mad-Ass recently, which is going out to some of the review team this week so look out for their reviews soon.

Another interesting package received this week was from another new company called Twisted 7 Sauces who have some imaginatively named sauces. These will be reviewed in due course.

And we are expecting product from The Chilli Jam Man, Chillilicious, and South Devon Chilli Farm too.

So if you would like your products reviewed, please send them to the address on the Contact tab on the top of our website.


I was immediately drawn to this Simply Add Chilli product by its packaging; it’s really eye catching and is clear that this is a versatile product to be kept in the fridge and used when food needs a kick.

Even the square shaped jar with the black lid sets it apart from other products, if I saw this on a shelf I would pick this one up first as it is aesthetically appealing. The cloth lid covering gives the product that made at home feel too.

The product has a sweet smell which must be due to the freshly squeezed lemon juice and fresh strawberries. It has an extremely thick, chunky, consistency and I would associate this with making pasta sauces, coating meat before grilling, and adding to a dish where chilli peppers are needed but fresh maybe unavailable.

The website describes Simply Add Chilli as a delicious chilli based dip come cooking condiment and I couldn’t agree more, there are 3 varieties going from mild, wild to extreme they are handmade with 100% fresh and natural ingredients

Jar kindly supplied by Simply Add Chilli


Chilli, Onion, Garlic, Vinegar, Lemon Juice (Freshly squeezed), Sugar, Fresh Strawberries, Scotch Bonnet.

When tasting the product you are first hit with the sweetness of the strawberries and then the heat of the chilli, it has a very unique, warming, flavour, which works well within food or as a chutney type dip with meats and cheeses.

Value (7/10)

**Please note we have reviewed a product from this range before but the company was then called Just Add Chilli**


{ 1 comment }

Matt Simpson of Simpsons Seeds, a Chilli expert, author and general all round nice guy tells us how to make paprika;

“We don’t have the nice dry climate here in the UK that is enjoyed in the US and Mexico, so sadly we cannot dry chillies out in the open. It can be possible to dry chillies in a greenhouse, but this is risky, this last year, the ‘wet one’, it would have been pretty much impossible.

I have spoken to folks who dry them above ranges, Aga’s and over fire places, this may well add an extra element of flavour to them, but this can take some time, also, if there is much moisture in the kitchen from kettles or boiling water, it can take longer.

I have found that best way to dry them is to use a dehydrator, I have owned a couple over the last few years, surprisingly, the cheapest, has produced the best. It was bought online can was just under £40.

Unlike the more expensive one, this one does not have a thermostat, so I have to rotate the rays a couple of times. If I don’t the sliced up flesh tends to get a little bit caramelized. Brilliant! I do check the trays every couple of hours to make sure things are drying well.

Combined with the de-hydrator is a very basic blender, and also a cheap coffee grinder. I have been asked why I don’t invest in more expensive equipment. I found that they have the same life expectancy as the cheap stuff. What I would say is make sure that you cover your face, or buy a decent dust mask when it comes to processing the hotter chillies.

The drying fumes from the de-hydrator can be pretty harsh on the non chilli lover in the house hold, chilli fume related coughing fits are a common place occurrence for me, more so when drying Habanero’s and especially so the 7-Pots, which as mentioned earlier are insanely hot. Best thing to do is place the dehydrator in a spare room, shed, or somewhere unlikely to cause domestic problems. Do remember that pets noses are far more sensitive than ours, dogs many hundreds of times so.

The procedure is to cut the pods into slices, or pieces, try to make sure that they are as similar sizes as possible. This ensures that the drying time is the same, if the pieces are of uneven sizes, the drying time will be varied, some pieces will be caramilising, (which does add to the flavour), whilst others are still soft. Once dried, they need to be allowed to cool to room tempreture.

The next part of the process is the blender. It’s also a good chance to experiment with mixing two, or more varieties together. As a seed producer, I tend to make quite a bit of sweet paprika, this as you can imagine, I find a bit dull. So a few years ago I began experimenting using the sweet paprika as a base, and then adding the powder from a hot one.

The use of a blender leaves largish pieces, these have their uses, why not keep some back and mix them with crystal sea salt, this was they can be used as BBQ rub or steak seasoning. I tend to go for fine powder, it takes up less space, and mixtures are less likely to settle. This is where the face protection is very important. As mention I have been using a cheap, (less than £10) coffee grinder. The powder does float up in the air, even more so when emptying the grinder into a storage jar.  I found that using a spoon was kinder on the lungs, also giving each batch a few minutes to settle within the grinder before opening to decant also helps.

Suggested sweet peppers, Napoleon Sweet, Marconi, Honur F1, although any that take your fancy should do, I like to use a thick fleshed type. As for the hots, well, there is a huge range out there, go for ones which suit your tastes, remember that you will get less paprika from thinner fleshed, which includes the stupidly hot 7-Pot. Try some of the Aji’s, or thicker fleshed annums.”

Link to Simpsons Seeds Sweet Pepper Seeds

Link to  Simpsons Seeds Chilli Seeds



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