News

Gardening Angel Web Graphic DEV02_smThose chilli loving people at Greenhouse Sensation has been nominated for ‘Best Online Garden Retailer’ and their lovely Quadgrow & Vitopod have also been nominated for ‘Most Innovative Product’ in the Great British Growing Awards.

Now if you would like to vote for them you have a chance of wining £750 worth of Gardening vouchers. All you have to do is click here or on the graphic to jump over to the site and vote.

There are lots of other categories to vote in as well, West Dean Gardens, home to the UK largest Chilli Fiesta and also in the running for “Most Inspiring Vegetable Garden to Visit”, must admit they inspire me each time I visit.

{ 0 comments }

A while ago we proposed an award for the company/individual that has impressed us/you with their effort, commitment and enthusiasm to promote and expand their business.

We asked for recommendations, and two people stood out from the rest by the number of recommendations, after much deliberation we had to pick just one winner this year.

And in the gold envelope this year is…… Cliff Hyslop AKA The Devon Chilliman.

Cliff Hyslop Win The ChileFoundry Award 2015

We selected Cliff as after twenty+ years in the food industry he started The Devon ChilliMan Business and glammed up one of his catering vans with a vinyl chilli coating. Then this year he took on a very major and very altruistic endeavor of working inside Channingswood Prison to take over their 7 massive and then unused polytunnels, working with unskilled prisoners, to grow over 2000 chilli plants using the Autopot water system and a feed from Growth Technology.

As you can imagine this is a big gamble and it has taken almost all of Cliff’s time and energy to make it happen, he has even ended up with a serious stay in Hospital. This success of the prison project has seen Chilli Pods become a tradable commodity at the prison and there are lots of stories to be told about what you can and cannot leave lying around that could be used to aid and escape.

After growing a range of chilies Cliff has to sell his crop to recoup the ever growing setup/running costs, and I am happy to say he has managed to do this in his first year with still some pods left to pick and from what I have seen he has some very happy new customers from all around the country.

Just incase you wondered who the runner up was this year is was the amazing Adam Marks from Mr Vikki’s who always seem to do an amazing job producing gold medal winning chilli products.

We would like to thank all the readers who recommended people/companies for this award.

{ 4 comments }

Having followed the UK chilli scene over the past two years, I am often jealous at the abundance of fantastic looking chilli festivals across the country (especially the South Coast and South West), and whilst I plan to travel further a field and witness the Clifton Chilli Club putting people through pain in the flesh rather than on Youtube, it would be nice if there were some a bit more local to me. So it should be no surprise that I’ve had the 27th September pencilled in my calendar as soon as I heard there was going to be a chilli festival in London.

The Festival of Heat - London’s Chilli Festival - 27th September 2015

This year was the 3rd annual Festival of Heat and it took place Red Market Gallery on Old Street in London’s now trendy East End. Over the past few years chilli sauces have been given a similar cultural status to craft ale and beard grooming, and as a result are very popular with the subcultural group known as Hipsters (see this amusing Hipsta Cop cartoon for further proof http://www.thepoke.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2015/05/tumblr_no86n6IaRo1uvs95yo1_1280.jpg), therefore it was no surprise to see this festival taking place in this particular part of London.

The East End is also famous for being one of the most multicultural parts of London, so it should be no surprise to hear that this was reflected in the festival’s entertainment and food stalls.

Despite being late September, it was a bright sunny day (something my chilli plants could have benefited from in August, instead of grey clouds) and there was already a long queue to get into the festival prior to it’s opening at 12pm.

Once inside we had a stroll around the Festival Market area and got stuck into sampling some of the many chilli sauces on sale from over 18 different stalls. Festival regulars such as Burning Desire, Grim Reaper Foods and Mushemi Fire were present, alongside some local sauce makers such as Dips, Made in Hackney and Gifty’s Kitchen. Particular highlights for me were Dips BBQ bonnet sauce, Capsicana’s Brazilian cook sauce and #Piggate chilli Pork Scratchings sold by Mushemi Fire who either had insider information on rumours about our Prime Minister or had the packaging printed that week in time for the festival.

The festival was sponsored by Encona, who also had a stall and was selling their range of sauce for £1 per bottle. Whilst, in my view, their sauces are nowhere near as nice as those sold by the smaller sauce makers present at that festival, at that price I picked up a few bottles and was given a chilli chocolate cupcake for my troubles!

Around 1pm the festival stage area opened with live music including Bengali Folk and Bollywood dancing, which my two year old enjoyed dancing to as opposed to trying the chilli sauces (“Chilli sauces are too spicy Daddy!”),

The Festival of Heat1

The festival also had a Kitchen Area which hosted workshops of chilli sauce making, chilli oils, medicinal attributes of chilli plants and saving chilli seeds. I attended the ‘Rare Chilli Masterclass’ hosted by Pritesh Mody from World of Zing, a company who make sauce, spices and dried chilli’s. Pritesh spoke about the different varieties of chilli and their different uses in cooking, and passed a few dried chilli’s around for us to try. This included Aji Amarillo, Pasilla and Chinese White Chillies. To finish we were shown a demonstration on how simple it is to make a really tasty chilli sauce.

By 2pm the festival was heaving to the extent where it was hard to sample as many sauces as I would have liked, therefore the organisers may want to consider a bigger venue next year but overall we had a really nice day. The weather was great, the chilli sauce stalls were varied and with the live music and kitchen workshops meant there was something for everyone and I’m already looking forward to next years festival.

The Festival of Heat5

The Festival of Heat4

The Festival of Heat2

{ 0 comments }

Huy Fong Sriracha in the UKIt seems hard these day to praise the UK Supermarkets, but with prices coming down, and now thanks to that hero of the UK Hot Sauce scene Stuart McAllister from Hot-Headz UK supermarket giant Sainsbury’s is now stocking Huy Fong Sriracha in over 500 stores nationwide.

This is quite an achievement and follows many many months of work from getting the product through label compliance, to finally getting the stock listed and into the Sainsbury’s distribution system.

We have described this sauce as iconic and it is true star of the USA chilli market with a reported 20+ million bottles of the USA produced sauce sold per year. The taste is unique and if you ever run out of things to do with it there is always The Sriracha Cookbook we reviewed a while ago.

Now for the really good news.. Sainsbury’s is selling a bottle of this magic hot sauce for only £3.00 a bottle. I know where I am going tomorrow so I will see you in Sainsbury’s.

{ 1 comment }

<div align="left">
Page 2 of 11512345678910...2030405060...Last »
<br /></div>