Happy tuesday again, folks. Today, it’s time for some seasoning.
Chilli salts, instead of sauces, this week and both from companies that we know well.
The Mini Jar Company on the left, makers of salsa, chutney and a great, fiery peanut butter, making their return with an aji lemon (or lemondrop) sea salt.
And, on the right, Wiltshire Chilli Farm, sporting the same brown action lines that we saw on their Dark Habanero sauce for a chipotle salt. A product that promises to be a massive step down in heat from both that and 🔥 the last two items that I had from them 🔥.
Two rather different product flavours – One bright and citrusy and the other rich and smoky – but a single product type all the same.
Let’s see what I make of them.
Well, right off the bat, Wiltshire Chilli farm’s angular, white logo atop bold action lines gives it the most impact of the pair and the colour of those lines, while not unique to this product, does say a fair bit about its flavour.
Whereas the small, round, white label that the Mini Jar Company have chosen does showcase the two main flavours at work – Lemon and lemondrop chilli – but it also leaves the salt itself to do most of the talking. A choice that seems far from ideal when it’s all a fairly flat, pale, creamy colour.
Visually, Wiltshire Chilli Farm’s “Chipotle Chilli Salt” is the more impressive by far and, while it doesn’t have the most original of names, I have to give it the win there as well. “Lemon Sea Salt With Aji Lemon Chilli” is far from succinct.
They do, however, come in near identical grinders.
The physical element of their packaging differs only in lid design, with the Mini Jar Company providing a brief explanation of the adjustable grind on their cap, while Wiltshire Chilli Farm only give us a lip for easy lid removal.
Both grinders possess this coarseness setting feature, though, and, with this shot of the instructions, you can now know how to adjust either:
Assuming that the extruded clear plastic shows up on camera, that is.
Whether it does or not, though, I’m not going to be showcasing the adjustable grind today. There are, quite simply, only so many pictures of salt that I can take before going madder than I am already.
Instead, here’s a single spoonful of each and maybe next time I showcase a grinder I’ll show you its varied grain size.
And, before I do any tasting, I want to bring up the ingredients real quick.
The Mini Jar Company’s salt is exactly what its overly long name says:
Sea Salt Infused with Lemon Juice, Aji Lemon Chilli
While Wiltshire Chilli Farm’s contains:
Sea Salt (68%), Ancho Chilli, Garlic, Chipotle Chilli (10%).
A thoroughly rich sounding blend that’s even richer when I actually try it.
It’s smoky and salty, yes, but it’s also dark, lightly raisiny and heavily, heavily roasted, with delicious garlic undertones.
Its burn is at the very bottom of a
and basically irrelevant once put on food but the salt’s so absolutely full of flavour that I don’t really care. I put this on just about everything.
Chips, for sure, but also any other style of potato. Risotto and most other forms of rice. Padron peppers. Macaroni cheese, spaghetti and other forms of pasta. Noodles. Stir fry. Pizza. Steak. And even salted caramel, if it’s not up to par.
Very little doesn’t benefit from this product’s sheer, savoury richness so, while I don’t tend to use a lot of salt in my daily life, I’m tearing through this one like no other.
And it really is like no other because, sadly, I’m not getting through the other salt I have on show at all.
It has a greater strength than its counterpart. A high
that qualifies as hot and actually gives my food some fire.
Yet the flavour that it has is a disappointment. Citrussy, yes, but almost entirely from the actual lemon, not the lemondrop.
Instead of having the unique, toasted citrus taste that made the dried pepper work so well in my fruit risotto, this is simply lemon salt with added heat. A combination of lemon juice and salt that I don’t personally enjoy.
While I absolutely adored their peanut butter, I don’t think that this Mini Jar item is anything special at all. It’ll be a good seasoning for fish but it really is just a spicy lemon salt.
My last spicy lemon product, The Chillees’ marmalade, managed to win me over with pure quality, even when I couldn’t really taste its pepper’s flavour, but this one doesn’t stand out to me in the slightest.
Of today’s two products, I can only recommend Wiltshire Chilli Farm’s but I recommend that one wholeheartedly. It’s mild but truly phenomenal.
Wiltshire Naga salt on everything. Once I tried it never went back to Chipotle!
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It’s going to be a while before I use up all the salt that I have, since a little goes a long way, but I’ll definitely keep your recommendation in mind for when I run out.