The Mini Jar Company is a fairly new company on the scene, being launched last year and like many companies, priding themselves on not using artificial ingredients and the products are made in small batches. They have a nice range of products available which are sold direct from their website and at many farmers markets and food shows. They are trying to fill the gap in the market for ‘non volume’ jams and preserves which are no longer available in supermarkets. Here we have their Scotch Bonnet & Tomato Preserve.

If I am honest, on first glance I wasn’t expecting much from this plain looking jar but as soon as I opened it I knew I was mistaken..this little jar packs some serious punch!

The lovely waft of warm spices and ginger hits your nose on opening, the texture is a perfect jam like consistency you expect with these products jagged yet at the same time smooth.

This product has a moreish taste which means a mini jar goes really quickly! I do wish this jar had a big brother (or sister) as I used it up far too quickly! The tomatoes and Scotch Bonnets work really well together the ginger compliments the scotch Bonnets Jamaican roots and the rum gives it a great kick! This is the first time I have seen rum in a chilli product and it works really well.

The Packaging is basic but this just shows these jars are not mass produced, it’s simpleyet effective it shows all the information needed and lets the product speak for itself. Now I have tried this product I will definitely be ordering it and trying some more varieties.

Looking on the website, there is a dedicated section to specialised Chile products, I feel the jars are priced fairly at £1.25 a jar. There is a great range and the benefits of a little jar means you can buy lots of different ones and try them all! I really like the sound of the Lemon and Naga Chilli Chutney and the Chilli Peanut Butter

Bottle kindly supplied by The Mini Jar Company


Scotch Bonnet Chillies, Tomato, Ginger, Garlic, Onions, Vinegar, Spices, Rum

Each product is handmade and heat scale ranges from very mild to very hot (we are talking Naga hot) all products The Mini Jar Company sell are made in small controlled batches which ensures a high quality product every time. They use no additives, colourants or thickening agents and all produce is locally sourced where possible.

One of the great things about their products are they are suitable for vegetarians, vegans & celiac.

Value (8/10)

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Here we have a new addition to the Chilli Festival Events for 2013, being held at Holker Hall, Cark-in-Cartmel, Grange-over-Sands, Cumbria. Here are the guys to give more information:

“We are delighted to be organising a Chilli Festival at Holker Hall on the weekend of the 28th & 29th September 2013. Holker Hall and Gardens is a fantastic venue, with a track record of holding successful events ranging from our annual Garden Festival with crowds of over 20,000 to our popular local producers markets.

We are being assisted by The Chilli Pepper Company Ltd to establish this as a successful event, following their previous involvement with the Lakes Chilli Festival held at nearby Levens Hall.(Please note we have been informed by the owners of Levens Hall that the event will no longer be held there due to parking/traffic movement issues in bad weather).

We are arranging a two day Festival with entertainment, cookery demonstrations, chilli eating competition and children’s activities.We are inviting specialist chilli companies from around the country, local specialist food suppliers and a range of on-site catering featuring cuisines from around the world.

We are experienced at handling and parking large numbers of vehicles and all the stalls will be located on hard standing to try and make provision, as far as possible, for any poor weather.  Unfortunately we cannot offer camping facilities.

Entrance will be £6 per adult with free entry for children in order to maximise numbers, discounted advance tickets will also be available through our website.

There is a great demand for an event of this kind in the North West and we look to build on the previous success in Cumbria.

Space is limited so if you would like to book a stall please contact us at or call 015395 58328


As I type this newsletter, I look at the date and realise we are over halfway through 2013! How did that happen? and it seems the sun has been showing it’s face and is predicted to do so into the weekend and beyond, much to the joy of event organisers and chilli growers alike. This weekend (6th & 7th) we have a big event just outside Newcastle, the North East Chilli Fest which promises to be bigger and better than last year, I am going so please say Hi.

Now those of you who have paid attention to recent posts on the site will have read that we promoting a competition with Gran Luchito solely in this newsletter, but only in the actual emailed version. This competition is to win 1 of 2 gift sets containing a jar of their smoked chilli paste, smoked chilli mayo and smoked chilli honey. The only way to enter was by clicking on the link in the emailed version of this article. This would take you through to the Gran Luchito competition page. The competition is open from now until 9.00pm on Monday 8th July, and is open to anyone, worldwide.

Gran Luchito Gift Set

So here we have all the articles published during June:

News & General Information:


Chilli Event Reviews:



This Newsletter is sponsored by Hot-Headz

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In the thesaurus, the word ‘Alchemy’ means the transformation of base metals into gold, this term can be transferred into the culinary world quite easily, and here we have Chilli Alchemy with their Red Onion & Chipotle Chutney. Alex and Jenny run Chilli Alchemy and they have a growing range.

Chilli Alchemy Red Onion Chipotle ChutneyNow I am very partial to an Onion Chutney, great with cheese and cold meats etc so how will this one hold up?

The labeling is simple and basic, but also clear and concise. It does the job, my only criticism would be that the company name wording is quite small so isn’t immediately obvious from a branding point of view.

So how does it taste? Once the lid is removed I get a nice aroma of the smoky chipotle and the balsamic vinegar. The onion pieces are a decent size and a nice deep brown colour. It’s clear they have soaked up the main flavours.

All too often, onion chutneys and relishes end up being pieces of onion and some very thin vinegary liquid. But I’m pleased to say that this is not the case, the mixture has been reduced to an ideal consistancy which will enable a spoonful to stay on top of a piece of cheese without becoming a mess in your lap!

So out with the spoon and I can see what I assume are pieces of chipotle pods and the odd chilli seed in amongst the red onion mix. The onion still has good texture, nicely softened and sweet but still retaining enough texture for a little crunch as it is chewed.

Another common problem with onion chutneys is that they can be overly vinegary, and again I’m pleased to see that isn’t a problem here either, whether it’s the use of Balsamic vinegar or the strong chipotle influence or both, it works to allow the red onion flavour through.


Red Onions, Red Wine, Sugar, Chipotle (3%), Balsamic Vinegar, White Wine Vinegar, White Wine Vinegar, Olive Oil, Sea Salt & Black Pepper

Jar kindly supplied by Chilli Alchemy

The onion flavour is not overpowering and the chipotle chilli gives a nice heat, actually hotter than I was expecting but that is a good thing! This is a chutney which will suit anyone who likes a gentle chilli kick, there is a lasting taste of chilli, but it is well balanced.

Overall this is a very accomplished product from a small producer, and nice to see there are no artificial additives.

Their products will be stocked at Chilli Bugs via their website and on Ebay, Chilli Alchemy will be listing on Ebay very soon.

In the meantime you can contact them on Twitter @chillialchemist or email them at

The 110g jar sells for £2.55 and there is a 220g jar for £4.00.

Value (7/10)

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