Ahead of a full article on the UK Chilli Cook Association (UKCCA) heats taking place this year, here is some information on the heat being held in Bedfordshire at The Mansion House Chilli & Gourmet Food Fiesta;

Chilli aficionados who believe they can cook an amazing Chilli-Con-Carne now have an opportunity to see how their favourite recipe compares with the best in the UK. The Mansion House at Old Warden, in association with Edible Ornamentals and the UK Chilli Cook Off Association, are holding the first heat in the Great British Chilli Cook Off. This event will be one of the highlights of the Chilli and Gourmet Food Fiesta which will be held in the grounds of The Mansion House on 8th and 9th June.

Hugely popular in the USA, chilli cook offs are rapidly becoming popular here in the UK. Teams of up to 4 keen chilli fans will have 4 hours to prepare and cook one gallon of chilli con carne to their own recipe which will then be judged by an expert panel.  The hottest chilli won’t necessarily be the winner as judges will be looking for the best appearance, aroma, consistency, taste and aftertaste of the chilli.  The winning team will receive a cash prize of £250 and entry into the UK final of the UK Chilli Cook Off which will be held later in the year. The winners of the UK final will a free expenses-paid trip to Las Vegas to represent the UK in the World Chilli Cook Off event.

Members of the public will also be invited to sample and judge the best chilli. The prizes for the public judging will include a Chilli Tour and Tasting for Two at Edible Ornamentals, the world’s first pick-your-own chilli nursery, and afternoon tea for four at The Mansion House.  The proceeds from the public judging will be donated to CLIC Sargent, the UK’s leading cancer charity for children and young people, and their families.  The UK Chilli Cook Off Association hope to exceed their charity donations for last year when they raised over £4000 for cancer charities.

To enter a team for the Chilli Cook Off at The Mansion House contact Shelley on 01767  626208 or register online at www.ukchillicookoff.co.uk

  • 2013 is the 3rd year the Chilli and Gourmet Food Fiesta has been held at The Mansion House
  • Teams will have 4 hours to cook a gallon of chilli from scratch, bringing their own ingredients and cooking facilities (Camping Gas or BBQ).
  • Each team’s Chilli will be judged by a panel of Chilli experts. Entry fee is £10 per team (teams can be made up of any number of people).
  • The competition will be split over the two days. Teams will only need to compete on either the Saturday or the Sunday, not both days. The team with the highest score over the weekend wins
  • All money raised from the Bedfordshire Chilli Cook-off will be donated to CLIC Sargent





There is something special happening on a small Island just off the South Coast of the UK, a Chilli Fiesta of course! For those who are trying to decide whether to go to the 1st Isle of Wight Chilli Fiesta, there are a number of very good reasons to come along these are:

  • It’s being held on the beautiful Isle of Wight
  • It’s raising money for a very worthwhile charity
  • It will involve Chillies
  • It will involve more Chillies!
  • It will involve Chillies ( did I mention that?)

chilli-fiesta-logo-3-330pxAnyway, The House of Chilli, purveyors of exquisite Chilli products is hosting the 1st Isle of Wight Chilli Fiesta on 27th & 28th July 2013.

The event, based at the Smallbrook Stadium on the outskirts of Ryde, will feature the cream of the chilli product industry from across the UK.

The spicy stalls will be offering a huge range of sauces, chutneys, chilli jams, chilli plants, fresh chillies, spices and all kinds of chilli related goods, as well as local produce, superb food, thrilling entertainment and exciting sideshows for kids and adults.

The fiesta will also play host to the 1st Isle of Wight Chilli Cook-off, the ever popular Chilli eating competition, big screen entertainment and much much more.

Why not make the Chilli Fiesta part of an extended stay on the island? From historic sites to natural delights, the Isle of Wight is a unique holiday destination and has something for everyone.

The Isle of Wight Chilli Fiesta is thrilled to be able to offer special ferry rates for visitors travelling to the island between 24-30 July 2013, from Portsmouth-Fishbourne or  Lymington-Yarmouth, if travelling by car, or from Portsmouth Harbour-Ryde Pier Head by foot passenger on the catamaran.

Buy your Fiesta tickets at www.isleofwightchillifiesta.co.uk and you will be sent a discount code for you to use on www.wightlink.co.uk – A car with up to 5 passengers will cost just £55 return, compared to the usual £90 and foot passengers will only pay just £10 instead of £18.

This inaugural event will be raising money for the “Beaulieu Respite”, which is a local charity on the island that helps children with severe learning disabilities, challenging behaviours and complex health needs, some of which are life limiting.

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Throughout the country there are now a handful of Chilli Shops opening their doors to the chilli community for them to get their Chilli fix. The first and original shop and company to do this in the UK is of course Chilli Pepper Pete’s in Brighton. Started by Miranda and the late great Gandalf of the Chilli world Pete Seymour who sadly passed away last summer.

But his legacy lives on, the company continues to grow and develop with Miranda at the helm, Steve the ‘Sourcerer’ and the rest of the team working hard to fulfill orders or work in the shop in Trafalgar Street, in the North Laines, Brighton,  just down from the Railway Station. You can read my original article of the shop when soon after it opened in 2011 here

Every company, from time to time needs to reinvent themselves and Chilli Pepper Pete is no exception. With a new look website due very soon, Miranda has decided redesign the company logo, pictured below

Coupled with the new company logo, Miranda and the team have decided to re launch one of their top selling and all time classic sauces, Dragons Blood and develop it into a range of 6 different sauces, each having the name Dragons Blood as the main branding but with each sauce being different. These are:

Dragons Blood Hot BBQ Sauce – £4.50            

This is a new take on the previous Smokin’ Chipotle Devil sauce with Chipotle Peppers, Cranberry; Blackcurrant juices as the key ingredients to create a hot fruity sauce which will make any BBQ more interesting!

Dragons Blood Hot Fruity Sauce – £4.50

This sauce is an updated version of the previous Sting in the Tail, the sauce base of Mango and Apricots luring you in but with the kick of Naga Ghost Chillies and Habaneros.

Dragon’s Blood Hot Green Salsa – £4.50

There are not many all green sauces out there, but this is one of the few, although technically a salsa and made with Tomatillo’s and a whole lot of Chilli , it would be great with Nachos.

Dragon’s Blood Hot Naga Sauce – £4.50

This is where we start to build up the heat levels, this sauce is crammed full of Naga Ghost Chillies, the hottest all natural sauce, with the fruity pineapple base which was the classic ingredient from the original Dragon’s Blood.

Dragon’s Blood Original Mega Hot Sauce – £7

Reverting back to the classic Dragon’s Blood, this is definately a sauce for the brave, with 6.4m extract to add the fiery kick.

Dragon’s Blood XXX Ultra Hot Sauce – £10

The title says it all really, if you want it insane, then this is your sauce, with 12m extract, this is the Dragon of old!

These are already available to buy direct from Chilli Pepper Pete. The Dragons’s Blood range now has it’s own Facebook page too.

The new labelling looks fantastic, clear and glossy. We will be reviewing these in due course but if first impressions are anything to go by, they will be a hit that Pete himself would be proud of.

And for those of you local enough to the Brighton shop, Miranda tells me that their Chilli plants should be available to buy from the shop any day now, there is sure to be some unusual varieties available for purchase.



Mark Gervaux, or The Ribman as he is better known on the streets of London, is famed for his amazing slow cooked Rib meat which he sells regularly on Thursday at Kings Cross and Sunday at Brick Lane. But it is his Hot Sauces which are really taking off, particularly the original Holy F*ck!

And it is the demand for this sauce which has prompted Mark to launch a Kickstarter project to try and get enough backers to raise £10,000 by the 25th of May. He wants to buy a shipping container and convert it into a kitchen so he can upscale hot sauce production.

Recently I managed to visit Mark and sample his Rib rolls and you can find that article here.

Now for those unfamiliar with the Kickstarter concept, it is quite straight forward. The project creator sets their target and the investment plan and then once approved, the project goes live (today) Mark sets different levels of backing so anyone can pledge different amounts ranging from £10 up to £1000.

At each different pledge amount, for your investment you will get something different as a thank you for helping reach the target.

For Mark, these range from;

£10 gets you 2 bottles of Holy F*ck

£50 gets a bottle of each of his hot sauces

£500 would get you a free Rib Roll whenever you want from his street food stall for a year.

The top level of backing is £1000 and for that you would get Mark to come to your house or party venue and cook his Ribs for up to 50 people.

There are other pledge levels in between too.

So thats Mark’s plan, here he is to tell you about it himself

The project has only been live for under an hour and there has been just over £500 pledged and 29 backers.

Heres the link to the project page again so you can make your pledge


And for those who have not experienced Mark’s sauces, here’s our own Darth Naga reviewing the sauce:


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