Product Reviews

We review this West Indian Pepper Chili Sauce called Voodoo Mango made by Angus & Oink. With this stye sauce we are expecting some great strong flavours and looking at the colour of it it certainly looks good, so what did we think? Would we buy it again?

Ingredients: Mango Pulp(40%), Onions, Garlic, Chillies, Ginger root, Malt vinegar (from barley), Turmeric, Mustard, Cumin, Coriander powder, Golden syrup & Seasoning.

Made & available from: Angus & Oink
Also check out their recipe page using this sauce: http://www.angusandoink.com/recipes/

Priced at: £4.50 for a 250ml bottle (Price correct at time of publication)

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Something I was not expecting to receive to review but was most welcomed, a product kindly supplied by Seggiano, their Crema di Peperoncino Chilli Paste.

Reggiano Crema di Peperoncino Chilli PasteSeggiano is the name of the small hilltop village on Monte Amiata in southern Tuscany, where Peri Eagleton and David Harrison have farmed organic olives since 1985. Twenty years ago they started selling their local Olivastra Seggianese extra virgin olive oil and a selection of artisan foods from small family food producers. This quickly grew into their brand today ‘Seggiano’, named in honour of the village where the story started.

Italians have a passion for food; I should know my girlfriend is Italian! Often the food is simple and made with the finest ingredients one can source to create a wonderful taste experience. That said there is a lot of bad Italian around where people do not follow these rules, just churning out any old pasta dish and charging the public for the privilege. Seggiano appear to have stuck to their principles and although clearly doing well, exporting far and wide, keep the honoured traditions alive and haven’t gone too mainstream. Indeed their website states “When we say handmade, we mean handmade. Our artisan food is freshly prepared in small batches using current harvest ingredients”

Ingredients: Fresh Calabrian Chillies 80%, Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Wine Vinegar, Salt.

The packaging is not eye-catching and more that of an ingredient of basic food stuff you keep in the cupboard ready. Italians though not known for keeping things quiet and understated often let their food speak for itself. However I feel I am being a little harsh as this is not a hot sauce but a quality ingredient so perhaps it is well labelled.

The jar is beautifully packed full of chilli’s with a deep red colour, you can see the whole chilli is used with all the seeds packed in too. The Naso di Cane is a variety of chilli or peperoncino, which is specific to Calabria. The name derives from the entertaining fact that the small angular shape of the pepper is undeniably reminiscent of a dog’s nose. Its robust, yet rounded flavour has an unusual depth, which is impossible to find in your average run-of-the-mill chilli sauce. The aroma is sweet, mellow and peppery and does not give away any expectation of heat. The texture is that of a roasted sweet pepper with the seeds adding in a bit of variety. Initially no heat hits you but then gently and unexpectedly a wonderful warmth fills your mouth. The actual flavour is a little difficult to describe, it is not one I am familiar with from my experience off so many chilli’s. I am likely doing the chilli a great disservice by saying this but to help you imagine a flavour it is a little like a peppadew you can purchase from any deli counter in the UK, however this has a much more sophisticated depth and warmth of flavour. So far I have tried this product straight on top of bruschetta, stirred into Bolognese, and as the main source of heat in a crab linguini every time this produce performed. Seggiano have done a great job and provided a true quality ingredient.

If you like the product enough you can even holiday on their farm if you wanted to. Then you can not only taste the dream but live the Italian dream too!

Flavour
(8/10)
Heat
(5/10)
Packaging
(4/10)
Value Prices will vary for this product depending on where you source it
Overall
(7/10)

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Chillilicious, A mother and daughter team from deepest darkest Fife and Scotland’s 1st Chilli farmers, started making chilli chutneys back in 2011 when they decided to try and grow the spicy fruit on their 2.5 acre farm, which has since grown to include 2 large poly tunnels, where they nurture over 4000 chilli plants, farm shop, glass art studio, a commercial kitchen and a biodiversity pond walk that serves to express and compliment their core values of fresh organic local produce.

Monkey Punch from ChilliliciousThe family team have won numerous awards since then and travel all over the UK to chilli festivals and specialist markets selling their creations.

Having tried a few of their products in the past I was looking forward to trying a new one, Monkey Punch harks back to the company’s beginnings being a chutney full of hearty chunks and deep rich flavours.

The name derives, I guess, from the use of banana as the main ingredient but rather than being the base flavour it acts as the fragrant after-note of the onion and sweet vinegar you’d expect from a more traditional chutney.

Ingredients: Bananas, kiwis, lemons, apples, dates, onions, allspice, salt, tumeric, white wine vinegar, sugar, jalapeño extract, lime extract, cayenne chilli.

Rather than being a mushy condiment as you may think you’d get from a banana based product, Monkey Punch has been expertly crafted and not over cooked so the texture of the apple, onion and other ingredients gives a satisfying bite that would work wonderfully served with a cheese board or plate of cold meats.

Heat wise the label promises an “explosion” but is, for me at least, a gradual warm glow that’s builds with every bite to a comfortable lingering finish, the chutney uses a jalepeno extract and dried cayenne, both of which are masked by the other ingredients so only provide the warmth. Although Chillilicous have hotter products in their varied range, their ethos is to concentrate on producing a well balanced and flavoursome accompaniment to food rather than trying to melt the face of the most hardened of chilli heads.

The packaging of Monkey Punch still has the homemade feel about it and the labels look like they could still be applied by hand, the printing isn’t glossy but a honest attempt and a fun design. (This may be a 1st run jar and the labels may improve during production as the company has recently been tweeking the brand design).

As with their other products you can choose to purchase a small 40g test jar for £1 (great for creating gift hampers) or the full size 270g jar for £3.95 which should last you one dinner party or a month of ordinary meals.

Gluten free and Vegan friendly

Flavour
(7/10)
Heat
(2/10)
Packaging
(6/10)
Value (8/10)
Overall
(7/10)

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Great British Sauce Co Hot and Sweet Chilli SauceThis review is for a hot sweet chilli sauce made by the Great British Sauce Co. I’ll admit that I wasn’t looking forward to this review having low expectations. You can buy a the old faithful litre of standard Chinese sweet chilli sauce at any supermarket and get it even cheaper at an Asian supermarket if you are lucky enough to have one nearby. However the Great British Sauce Co’s Hot and Sweet Chilli Sauce has been sent to me and as this is British product I couldn’t turn it down. Their website states “In our kitchen we are inspired to create products that celebrate our British cosmopolitan culture and we promise that we will always make them here in Britain” I can almost hear the national anthem playing in the background.

The label is welcoming and looks to me how a product of its type or a ketchup should look. Something I always do is check the range out to see if the labels match and I am please to see that the marketing flows through their range in a stylish way. But it’s not just about how pretty or clever the label is will the sauce be worth the packaging? On the bottle you will also find:

“At the Great British Sauce Company we’re passionate about creating delicious, properly made sauces and condiments. All our sauces are packed with
flavour and use the best ingredients we can find. Our Hot & Sweet Chilli Sauce carefully blends fruity sweetness with a serious chilli bite. Great in stir-fries, as a table sauce, marinade or dip”

Ingredients: Sugar, water, plum puree 12%, modified maize starch, salt, red pepper flakes, Habanero chillies 1%, concentrated lemon juice, garlic, citric acid, thickener: cellulose gum. May contain traces of wheat flour, soya, mustard or celery.

The sauce itself is clearly sticky and it smells sweet as you would expect, but different to the basic sweet chilli sauce this one has some hidden gems another aroma stands out and hints of the chilli hiding inside. The heat level is quite respectable too almost catching you by surprise. You get both an instant hit with this, one at the same time as the pleasurable fruity notes the Habanero brings to sauces, then a nice building burn to keep you interested. So far I have used the sauce as a dipping for dim sum style fried starters, as a basic sauce to pimp my burger and to make a basic frittata meal come to life. I have not yet tried as a stir fry sauce but you just know this sauce would work to perfection. Perhaps the British can teach the Chinese a thing or to you can even Visit the GB kitchen for more seasonal recipe ideas.

You can tell from the attention to detail that the co-founder Andrew puts his heart and soul into this sauce, and the others in his range, aspiring to have each bottle tasting as good as the original homemade version.

Having finished writing the review the final task was to look up the price, I was expecting a premium of around £3.99 – £5.99 with this product. However much to my delight when I was pondering ‘no matter how nice the product is I probably would still stick to the Chinese sweet chilli sauce’….. The price per bottle is a mere £2.00. So it’s tasty, spicy, British and reasonably priced. Would I but it again? YES.

Flavour
(8/10)
Heat
(4/10)
Packaging
(7/10)
Value (8/10)
Overall
(7/10)

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