Attention: This is an old post regarding a product which has since ceased production. To the best of my knowledge, neither it nor its makers still exist but the review will remain on my site, for posterity. For a more recent sauce with the same name and concept, however, try looking at Wiltshire Chilli Farm’s Firemite, instead.
Hey folks, I’m going to be brutally honest with you. I don’t like the taste of today’s product.
But then, it is a well known, divisive flavour. One that people either love or hate.
I am, of course, talking about Marmite. Or, as it’s sometimes known for legal reasons, “famous yeast extract”. The signature ingredient in Fire Foods’ Firemite sauce.
They were low on this sauce when I picked it up so I didn’t get much chance to taste it ahead of time. I was quite unsure as to how I’d feel about it, too, since I’m among the half of the population that hates the thing that makes it unique.
Yet, while I can’t stand the dark, salty, savoury, kind of malty and vaguely meaty flavour of Marmite on its own, that taste sounded perfect to liven up a tomato-based dish that might otherwise be lacking in umami. Bolognese and con carne being Fire Foods’ two main suggestions.
Blended with tomato and naga, as it is in their Firemite, I thought that I might actually like that well known yeast extract.
I was wrong.
The tomato may be their main ingredient but it’s not the main flavour. Or even a major one.
It’s really just a base for the yeast extract to build upon, whilst toning its sheer strength of flavour down to a more tolerable level. Though still not one I could stand a full spoonful of. Despite having poured one:
Fire Foods have not skimped on the Marmite here. This is an intensely flavoured sauce that you really won’t need a lot of to change up a meal so it comes as no surprise that it also has a fair bit of heat to it.
The bottom end of my
to be precise. Which makes it pretty mild for a ghost pepper sauce but hotter than most of the usual supermarket fare.
There’s no heat rating on the bottle, or on their website, but, if there were, I have no doubt that this product would be labelled “extra hot”.
Yet, as I’d recommend using it – a dash or two in a meal to add some depth of flavour, I doubt that there are many chilli fans who’d struggle with it. It’s a great level of heat to be noticeable but usable.
And actually, when it’s in a bolognese, I enjoy the Firemite. Not just tolerate it but actually think it improves the dish.
I may not like it on its own but I will definitely be using this product.
For serious marmite lovers, it might be a pour on sauce but, for the rest of us, this is a beautiful, usable cook in.
Fire Foods have done well on this one but I do have to comment on its packaging.
It’s a bold label, curved at the top to hold the company logo and very indicative of the sauce’s flavour with its fiery orange-yellows and dark black background.
But it’s not designed to be. It’s the exact same label we see on every Fire Foods sauce.
The same chillies set against the sun logo, the same unleash the heat tag line and no other art. Aside from the name in that little gradient box, nothing sets this bottle apart from any of their others.
And that name seems either poorly printed or quite easily worn. A problem we also see with its description and ingredients list.
Speaking of which, I probably aught to show you that list because it doesn’t quite match the one on their website:
Tomato (Tomato, Tomato Juice, Citric Acid), MUSTARD, Yeast Extract, Vinegar (Barley), Naga Chilli, Xanthan Gum.
But, as always, it’s not really the bottle that matters. I wouldn’t recommend this sauce as a collection piece but, if you like marmite or think you’d like a touch of it in your meals like I seem to, it’s certainly a sauce worth trying.
5 thoughts on “Firemite – Love it or Hate it?”