More Black Salsa

Hey folks, how’s it going? Today, I want to take a look at a rather more mainstream company.

You’ve probably never heard of Salsa Tamaƶula but I’d be amazed if you’ve never heard of their signature product. After all, this “Valentina” hot sauce is the mexican staple, on almost every restaurant table across its home country.

ValentinaBlack

So it comes as absolutely no surprise that MexGrocer stock it, along with their more obscure sauces. Any importer worth their salt should.

No, today’s big surprise comes in the form of a second bottle. Another sauce from the same brand, bearing their company name in the same white-outlined, green lettering on red and black.

TamazulaBlack

A slightly smaller container of Salsa Picante Tamaƶula Muy Picante, colloquially known as “Tamaƶula Black”.

Why black? Because the Salsa Tamaƶula sauces are more commonly seen in yellow labels, with these darker ones denoting their extra hot variants – That “Muy Picante” on the packaging.

Extra hot might not actually mean “hot”, though, so let’s see what I make of them.

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Return of the Ancients

Hey there heat eaters, do you recognise this chilli?

ChilhuacleNegroCropped

I wouldn’t be surprised if you don’t, since it’s been a long time since I last had it and this time was my first time seeing it fresh, too. It is, however, the chilhuacle negro (literally “ancient pepper black”) that we saw dried in my old enchilada recipe, where I was reviewing La Picanteria’s peppers and salsa.

Honestly, though, that salsa was a tad disappointing. The dried chillies, themselves, had a wonderful earthy flavour that was uniquely reminiscent of artisan tobacco and, even way back then, I thought that I could do better with them. Now, I finally get the chance.

So, years on from that first taste, having I finally managed to track down another supplier of the pepper, I’m making myself a superior salsa negra. A black salsa that isn’t quite the traditional sort but uses the proper aztec peppers and tastes astounding.

Like, devour three portions in one sitting and then go out for more ingredients levels of astounding.

But they are hard peppers to get a hold of and, while Yorkshire Peppers had plenty for me, I can’t guarantee that they have enough to go around. If you want to follow along with today’s recipe, you may need to substitute a milder, equally rich chilli like a poblano or a rehydrated ancho or pasilla.

They won’t taste quite the same but they’re the closest easily available peppers that I can think of.

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Choc Chip Cheese

Hello again everyone. This time around, we have something weird and rather horrific-sounding, I’ll be honest, but it comes to me from a company that we’ve seen before. One who’s cheeses I thoroughly enjoyed.

Today, though, we’re looking at the latest from them, The Great British Cheese Company. A much madder creation, if you ask me, because it contains chocolate. Chocolate, chilli and lime, to be precise.

GBCChocCheese

And, while it barely looks any different on the outside, it makes no attempt to hide its uniqueness once I’ve peeled back the wax:

GBCChocNude

It’s a pastel shade of cocoa-brown, with whole chips of chocolate and small flakes of both red and green pepper all throughout.

It’s not the most tempting looking snack, even by cheese standards, but the aroma wafting from it holds far greater appeal – An overtone of something akin to green candy, with subtler notes of smooth, creamy chocolate cheesecake. None of their usual strong cheddar here, just a gentle scent that reminds me of either chocolate limes or a mint aero.

It’s rather enticing but smell can only get you so far. What do The Great British Cheese Company have in store for its taste?

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Bunster’s Imposter

Hope you’re doing well, my fellow freaks. Today, we have something slightly novel. A sauce post on a sunday.

Why? Because it’s not a review but a look at the hot sauce making kit that Bunster’s kindly sent me back in january. And, more importantly, at what I made from it.

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A certain bold-flavoured, crazy concoction that I whipped up to feed my friends in a blind taste taste. To see if they could decipher which of the six sauces from that kit was actually my own recipe.

I’m not going to say anything more specific on my front page, so as to let you play along with 📽️the video📽️, but, once you click that “Continue reading” button, it’s about to be full on spoiler territory. You have been warned!

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Serious Sweet Heat

Hello there, everybody. Last week we looked at a few jams and one of them was really rather hot. It wasn’t super hot, though, despite using superhot chillies, so, today, we’re gonna go hotter. And we’re going to do it with a similar product type: Thai sweet sauces.

Essentially just bottles of pourable chilli jam.

SweetHeatSauces

We’ll start off mild, with Wiltshire Chilli Farm’s hungarian hot wax version, but quickly take a flying leap into the extreme with their Trinidad Scorpion sauce, recently featured on Hot Ones. Then, to finish off, we’re going to look at a very special breed of reaper from Chillis Galore.

It’s going to be a wild ride but I’ll have sweetness to balance out my suffering and I’ll make it through, as I always do, to bring you my thoughts on the whole lot.

Let’s get started!

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The Jam Man Cometh

Happy tuesday, folks. Today’s review has been a long time coming.

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This particular jar was found at a food festival by my buddy, 📽️ Lord Grim 📽️, but I’ve known about the Chilli Jam Man for longer than I’ve had this blog.

Because, while I don’t know what festival my jar of bhut jam came from, it really doesn’t matter. The Chilli Jam Man is one of the biggest names in artisan fiery food, possibly even the biggest, and you can find him and his “jambassadors” at just about every food-themed event this side of london. His coverage is a wonder to behold.

But it’s not just the one jar that I have from him, today. No, I picked up a couple, myself, to round out the range and better showcase his brand:

GroupJamMan

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Lantern Fruit Gulab Jamun

Hey folks, I’m back again for another recipe and, this week, it’s something special from my childhood. Not, this time, anything involving the nesparo from my summer holidays in spain but, instead, something both closer to and further from home.

Today, I’m going to be making gulab jamun – An indian dessert that I grew up sharing with my muslim neighbors and one that is, in fact, named for its similar appearance to another regional fruit.

Yet I’m not making them just to relive my childhood. No, I have indian supermarkets near me if I need a quick fix of those sweet milk dumplings. And they’d be rather more traditional than mine.

What I’m making are, in fact, the “lantern fruit” gulab jamun from one of my favourite cooking games, Battle Chef Brigade. And I’m going to be using some rather more authentic ingredients than the other recreations that I’ve seen. Properly highlighting the flavour of fire that the in-game dish is known for, without sacrificing the fictional fruit’s lighter, more refreshing qualities.

Gulab

Before I get started, though, I’m sure you’re all wondering what exactly the “lantern fruit” really is.

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South Indian Chutney

Hello again, everybody. We’re finally nearing the end of my Reading Chilli Fest review backlog but, rest assured, some of the best are still to come. As well as one of the weirdest:

Manjira

Today’s product is a pachardi – Something that I’d never even heard of, before the event. Looking into it, though, it appears to be akin to a chutney or pickle and is traditionally either served as a side or used as the base of a curry. Much as an achari would use a regular chutney or one might use Mr Naga, if they’re looking for serious heat.

Where the pachadi sets itself apart, though, is in its high coconut content and the use of oil, rather than acid, for preservation. And, when made fresh, it’s often blended with yoghurt to form the keralan equivalent of a raita.

So, that’s what Manjira’s set out to popularise, here in the west – Quite literally a different side of indian cooking. But how does her “Hot Garlic” version of the “South Indian Chutney” hold up?

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Stellar Melt

Welcome back, everyone, to another weekend recipe post. With

finally uploaded earlier this week and a new batch of goodies from them recently added to my collection, today seems like the perfect time to talk about how I use their 7-pot sauce.

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Solaris is a tangy yellow pepper sauce that only really comes into its own on hot food – Preferably meat, fish or cheese – where its equally tangy, fruity, scorpion-like pepper and honeyed mustard notes become a lot more apparent.

I played around with it a tonne when I wrote but nothing ever seemed to outshine the simple blend of melted cheese and either ham or tuna in a panini. The mustard with the meat, the tang against the cheese and the fruity chilli and yellow pepper notes to pair the two together. What could possibly be better?

Well, I set out to find out and came to the conclusion that there was one solitary answer: The same thing with added basil. Perhaps not the revelation that I was looking for but a great find, all the same.

So, today, we’re going to make my homemade ham, cheese and basil panini with Solaris sauce. A real lunchtime favourite of mine.

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Summer Fruit

Hey folks, I hope that you’re all enjoying the summer sun.

Today, I have for you some rather summery sauces that I picked up a little over two summers ago. A pair of highly fruity products that I tried all the way back at Reading Chilli Fest and have been just waiting to post my review of.

But, between freebies, newer items and the fact that I wanted to spread such fruity sauces out, it’s only now that you’re finally seeing this pair. The final pair, in fact, of Mango sauces from that event:

BurningChillees

Both from companies that we’ve seen before and both from companies who’s fruitier items have impressed me in the past.

How will these two, in particular, compare, though, to the oodles of other mango sauces on the market?

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