January 2013

Bring On  the Heat

After Heating up the North East food festival scene with its 1st event in 2012 which attracted over 10,000 visitors  the  North East Chilli Festival returns in 2013 promising to be bigger, better and hotter than before.

Held over two days the 6th & 7th of July, the 2nd North East Chilli Fest will bring together the great and the good of the UK Chilli scene Including ChilliPepperPete, the Chilli Pepper CompanyMr Vikki’s, Fire Foods, The Wiltshire Chilli Farm and even from as far as Dartmoor (a thousand mile round trip) the Dartmoor chilli farm, in fact it was Phil Palmer who gave last year’s favourite quote “if Carlsberg did chilli festivals it would be this one

As well as the great and the good of the chilli world the stalls are complimented by favourite local producers all doing chilli related specials making this one of the most diverse food events in the north east,

If that’s not enough they have also expanded the street food area where you can buy an amazing array of foods to eat while you check out top quality entertainment marquee including the famous chilli eating competition.

This is all set in the amazing grounds of The National Trusts Seaton Delaval Hall, (Northumberland) which was designed by Sir John Vanbrugh who also designed Blenheim Palace.

After sampling some of the world’s best hot and not so hot food you are free to explore the wonderful grounds and  relax in the many available areas.

Early  bird tickets Priced at £4 are available now from www.chillifest-ne.co.uk (all kids are free)

For  further info or ticket giveaway competitions contact – Mark Deakin 01912373240

info@chillifest-ne.co.uk  

www.hotstuffchillicompany.co.uk

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Here we have another exclusive new product from award winning master chef Grant Hawthorne, African Volcano Peri Peri marinade, this is paired with the earlier Sauce version reviewed by Rob House.

I know it’s nearly the end of January but I’ll start off with saying ‘Happy New Year’ as its my first review of 2013.

After doing a bit of research of Grant and his sauces, the first thing that caught my attention is that he has won numerous gold great taste awards, Im very eager to try this now and also tells me he is passionate and focused about his products.

It has an interesting appearance, at a glance I would call it a sauce lava lamp as its clear that the oil separates away from the other ingrediants which why I think it has a lava lamp look, but a good old shake will sort that out.

Oil is a key ingredient when making marinades as it aids the binding of ingredients to your chosen food, but not only that, it assists in browning and crisping meats. The bottle is a whopping 240g so if you are feeding the 5000, you are sure to have plenty left for your summer bbq.

The label is very simple, but has a different vibe than your day to day sauces, with a sketch of a volcano at the top, underneath you have 2 stripes of yellow and green, with the company and marinade name centred within it.

Ingredients :

Fresh chilli 3%; olive oil 11%; white wine; 28%; garlic 11% and other seasonings & ingredients. No preservatives.

The text is a little small and maybe hard to read if you have bad eyesight like me. Three red chillies glow on the front boasting the strength with the words ‘feel the African heat’ on top. It does have an African aura, but mainly from the colours.

Out of generosity, 30p of every bottle sold will be donated to the ‘Habitat of humanity’ South African charity, this is also displayed at the bottom of the label. Nice to see folk with a generous heart.

The smell is very inviting with rich aromas. Garlic is one of the most dominant ingredients pulling through. Comparing it to other peri peri marinades i.e nando’s, this is definately more exciting and doesn’t have that bland supermarket scent to it.

I have cooked with it, used it as a sauce, dipped my chips in it, spilt it, you name it. Whatever you pour it on, sure livens things up.

With it containing 11% olive oil, it is slightly on the runny side so be careful when pouring, I’m sure your not going to be that bothered if a bit more than expected drips out, more sauce more flavour.

I finally got me some chicken wings to accompany it, when eating, the skin was very crispy and had a rich garlicky taste, with a nice medium heat which didn’t build but conducted well within the chicken, the white wine gives it an ever so slightly sweetness which is quite pleasant to the palate.

The flavours are really charming and the heat has just the right balance alongside the ingredients which delivers it’s authentic characteristics. It pimps out your burps real for sure (hope that didnt put you off). I’m sure you can find more interesting recipes to play with, you can browse the African Volcano site for some of Grants own recipes.

One of them being pulled pork on peri peri bap, sounds tasty, eh? I highly recommend this if your a fan of peri peri as the chefs approach to detail in taste shines through and gives your everyday shop bought marinade a run for its money,although it being slightly more expensive, you can purchase this and a sauce version for £6.50 each plus shipping. International shipping available too, but has to be arranged first.

Flavour
(8.5/10)
Heat
(5/10)
Packaging
(7/10)
Value (7.5/10)
Overall
(8/10)

 

 

 

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This sauce from Rico Picante has a great aroma, smoky with the acidic hit of vinegar; its mild flavour is earthy and slightly sweet. It has the perfect table sauce consistency and despite it being mild has a rich flavour which is unique to any other table sauce I have tasted.

Its packaging takes me to Mexico, its subtle font colouring; works well with the labels background and reflects the product inside.

The sauce is a mix of fruity Aji Amarillo and the deep red, mild, berry flavoured Aji Panca Chilli producing a great smoky flavour.

Rico Picante has 5 varieties ranging from mild to extra hot and won the great taste gold 2012 award.

We reviewed their Amarillo sauce back in November and the review can be found here and features more detail on the company in general.

The sauce comes in a 150ml bottle and is priced at £3.50 and is available from various online hot sauce sellers including Chilli Pepper Pete and The Devils Garden

Ingredients:

Aji Amarillo 50%, Dried Aji Panca 25%,  Onion, Garlic, Vinegar, Water, Vegetable Oil, Salt, Black Pepper, Sugar and Citric Acid.

Bottle kindly supplied by Rico Picante

Flavour
(7/10)
Heat
(5/10)
Packaging
(7/10)
Value (7/10)
Overall
(7/10)

 

 

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Peri peri sauce is a blend of chilli, onion, garlic, lemon, herbs and spices which is typically used as a marinade or seasoning. Whilst peri peri sauce originated in Portugal, it has become commonplace across much of Southern Africa.

Today is a rather exciting day here at the ChileFoundry as we have been given an exclusive first look at a new product from award-winning Master Chef of Great Britain, Grant Hawthorne.

Grant founded African Volcano in early 2012 with a view to bringing the flavours and heat of Africa to UK shores. Up for review today we have a new, hotter version of his African Volcano Peri Peri sauce. The existing medium strength sauce has not only won Scooby’s praise, but a gold 1 star Great Taste Award too.

Ingredients:

Chilli (5%), Dried Chilli (1%), Tomato (15%), Onion (15%), Olive Oil (9%), Red Wine (3%), Garlic (2%) and other seasonings/ingredients.

Picking up the large 240g bottle the first thing that is evident is the separation of the olive oil from the other ingredients. This is perfectly natural and after a quick shake, the ingredients are emulsified again.

I take a moment to study the differences between the labels of the hot and medium products. Aside from the obvious addition of an extra chilli and change to the product description, very little has changed. The one exception is that the “Peri Peri Sauce” text is now white instead of red. This is a welcome change as it is much easier to read against the green background. I quite like this product’s packaging – some of the text is a little hard to read, but the artwork on the front of the bottle makes a refreshing change from the usual chilli/devil/skull motifs that are synonymous with many hot sauce manufacturers.

Removing the cap from the bottle I am instantly greeted by a waft of enticing aromas. The smell is more complex than I was expecting and is more reminiscent of a French classic such as chicken chasseur or beef bourguignon than the supermarket peri peri sauces I have grown accustomed to. I think this is mainly due to the use of tomatoes, garlic, onion and red wine.

The initial taste is quite rich, but the herbs and spices soon take centre stage and work to balance the flavour. The sauce is very smooth, so distinguishing the spices used is very tricky. I would guess that Grant has utilised bay leaves, paprika and oregano but I’m sure that his recipe contains 1 or 2 secret ingredients too.

This sauce is quite hot and left a pleasant warmth in my mouth which lasted for several minutes.

Overall, the combination of flavours in this sauce is excellent. It is definitely one of the more versatile sauces I have tried and works brilliantly with a range of savoury dishes. I particularly enjoyed cooking Peri Peri Prawns – a recipe which is provided on the African Volcano website. A squeeze of lemon juice really accentuated the flavours of the dish.

The price is £6.50 and African Volcano will be donating 30 pence from the sale of every bottle to the Habitat for Humanity, South Africa charity.

You can purchase African Volcano products direct through their website or via one of their stockists. On Saturdays, Grant also runs a stall at the Maltby Street Market in London, so if you’re local why not pop by for a taster.

Flavour
(9/10)
Heat
(6/10)
Packaging
(7/10)
Value (7/10)
Overall
(8/10)

 

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