Even Habanero

Even Flow. Another strangely-named bottle from Orriss & Son but, this time, it’s their original recipe habanero sauce. And, unlike with their Fresh Tendrils, it actually tells us something about what’s inside.

For this habanero-based product, along with the rest of their range, the company use primarily pepper juices, rather than full pods. Giving their sauce a distinctive, smooth texture and, dare I say, even flow.

It’s part of what sets Orriss & Son apart and they clearly wanted to capitalise on it here. Yet what sold me on today’s feature wasn’t on the front of its bottle, at all.

No, as nice as its peachy orange labelling is against the dark, orangey-red of the sauce inside, it was the ingredients list that really caught my attention:

Tomatoes, Habenero Chilli Juice, Red Pepper Juice, Cider Vinegar, Fermented Red Chilli (Chilli, Vinegar, Salt), Sugar, Maple Syrup, Smoked Chilli Powder, Fenugreek Leaf, Guar Gum (0.25%), Oregano

A list featuring many unusual forms of pepper and, more intriguingly, fenugreek leaf. Now when was the last time you saw a product with fenugreek leaf? Because I’m not sure I’ve reviewed even a single one.

As far as I can remember, the only time that I’ve talked about it was in my phaal shakshuka recipe, where it gave the perfect dry and slightly mapley, herbal taste to replicate the flavour of a stupidly strong, british-bangladeshi dish. That secret special something that seems to be in all superhot curries and indian-style pickles.

So, while Orriss & Son’s habanero is a bit weaker than what the leaf would normally be paired with, I’m very excited to see if their sauce can give me an instant hit of that indian restaurant taste at home. Let’s try it out!

On my spoon, the sauce looks a lot more textured than expected, with tiny shards of leaves and pepper skin. Yet, unless they all clump together, they’re practically unnoticeable on my tongue, beneath the promised “Even Flow”. The same ultra-smooth texture that we saw in the Fresh Tendrils.

The pepper juices really do make all the difference, in that regard, while still imparting plenty of rich, red chilli flavour to this tomato-based sauce. Along with subtle hints of habanero fruitiness and smoke, for depth.

Initially, that fruitiness helps to bring forth the sweetness of this product – Or vice versa – but both gradually fade away into a well-rounded, all over,

burn. Carrying all the trademark sharp and spiky feel of its signature chilli, while hitting far more of the tongue and throat than that pepper could alone.

It’s a high heat, towards the top of its number, and it lingers for a good long while. But so, too, does the Even Flow’s aftertaste. A dry, slightly bitter and unusually mapley, herbal flavour that I would recognise anywhere.

Orriss & Son haven’t skimped on the fenugreek leaf at all!

With that in mind, this sauce is exactly what I’d hoped it would be and it’s going to go great into my indian home cooking. As well as over snack foods, like bhajis, pakoras and samosas, or over a variety of meats, as a marinade.

It’s not the most unique of hot sauces, by any means, but it’s a great tasting one which definitely makes the most of its indian herb in a way that I’ve not seen elsewhere. So I would certainly suggest giving it a try, if you’re a fan of indian food.

Or checking out my encyclopedia page for other habanero products, if you’re not.

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