The Jerk that Stole Christmas

Merry early christmas, everyone. It’s the end of november again and therefore time for another seasonal dessert. This time, a quick and easy take on christmas cake, with a blend of jamaican-style spices.

It’s not going to be a traditional jerk flavour, since it lacks any thyme, but it’ll still bring together the fragrant peppercorn flavour of allspice and black pepper with some christmassy dried fruit and the blend of cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves that both influences share.

A real taste of the season but also of the caribbean.

Plus, I swapped out the chillies in my old “mincemeat” recipe for a couple of scotch bonnets to give this cake a little bit of extra jamaican goodness and I strongly suggest that you do the same. Continue reading

The True Vindaloo

Hey there spice lovers, this month I’m hanging out at my buddy Exban’s place for a nice romantic wine and dine.

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Why? Partially because his girlfriend dumped him but mostly because I felt like making a proper vindaloo and needed someone to finish off the booze with. An explanation that, if anything, only raises more questions.

Since when did a vindaloo have wine in it? Why is there alcohol in an indian dish when the nation’s religions are so against it? And why can’t I drink it all myself?

Well, for starters, the vindaloo, or vin d’ aloo, isn’t an indian dish. It comes from goa and uses indian spices, certainly, but goa wasn’t a part of india at the time. Goa was officially portuguese and portuguese cooking had no such anti-alcohol restrictions. They were more than happy to be working with wine.

Their earlier dish, the “carne de vinha d’alhos” from which the vindaloo was derived, got its name from its three key ingredients: Pork, wine and garlic. Three ingredients to which the goan people added coriander, turmeric, chilli and a whole host of other spices, along with potatoes to bulk it out and keep the heat from getting too high.

Because, unlike today’s vindaloo, their vin d’ aloo wasn’t meant to be the hottest dish on any menu. All they wanted was a full-on fiery flavour to their marinated meat.

And, while even most “traditional” recipes pull from a later date, once the wine had been swapped for vinegar, I’m going to be taking it right back to its origins, today, with a rich and fruity red wine.

So, let’s get started, shall we?

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Kitchen Alchemy

Hey there heat eaters, today I feel like baking something simple with Grim Reaper Foods’ Alchemy. And what could could be simpler than a microwave mug cake? A subtler take on a ginger steamed pudding, topped with that wonderful, sweet, lemondrop and cognac sauce.

Plus, not only is it simple but it also takes under ten minutes.

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More Minis

Hey everyone, you remember The Mini Jar Company, right? Well today I’m featuring them and them alone, with a couple more little jars from Reading:

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To be more specific, I have for you their Pineapple, Chilli And Mint Salsa and their Ginger & Wasabi Chutney, the latter of which doesn’t actually contain any chilli.

Between the mint in the salsa and the rhizomes in the chutney, though, both of these items focus on the sensation they create, along with their flavour. These aren’t heatless like that one marinade that Mahi sent me. They’re just a little different from the norm.

And that, my friends, is what I try my best to represent. Spice products after my own heart.

So, let’s get into the review.

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An Easter Add-On

Hello again everyone, I hope you had a great easter.

This week, I’m celebrating with some seriously hot chocolate so, if you didn’t get all the cocoa-based delight you wanted or, if you’re somehow still not sick of the stuff, read on for my thoughts on the Psycho Chocolate, from Doctor Burnorium’s Hot Sauce Emporium.

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It just might be what you need to round off the festivities.

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Seafood, Fruit and Spice

Hey folks, I’ve been popping by my local farmer’s market a lot recently and one of the veg stalls has really rekindled my interest in the humble orange habanero.

Imported from spain, he’s managing to sell them fresh and full of fruity flavour, despite the snowy weather.

Personally, I’d recommend shopping somewhere similar for your hot peppers, if able, because I can definitely taste the difference. But, since big supermarkets seem to sell habaneros all year round, you’ll probably have more luck looking there right now.

Either way, though, they’ll work for today’s recipe – White fish poached in a ginger wine, habanero and orange sauce.

A sharp and spicy, yet sweet and fruity, almost honeyed dish that really is utterly delicious.

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White-Label Wonders

So this tuesday we’re going to be looking at another pair of products but it’s not a comparison post.

Instead, I have for you a couple of white label items from a single seller that we’ve already seen stuff from. It’s Daddy Cool’s!

Back again with some rather unusual recipes.

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2017’s Christmas Recap

Hey folks, it’s that time of year again. Christmas is fast approaching and, if you’re anything like me, you’re panicking over what to get your friends and family. So, this thursday, we’re going to go over everything I’ve had in the last year, seeing what would and wouldn’t make great gifts.

It’s time for my yearly recap.

But, this year, we’re not going to go by month. We’re going to go by theme.

So feel free to skip ahead to the bold heading that interests you or your gifts’ recipients most.

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Indian Potato Cakes

Hey folks, it’s recipe time again.

Not that you haven’t already had a couple this month but both of those were little, product specific recipes I came up with on the fly. Today’s is a touch more thought out.

This time, we’ll be making one of the best carriers for sauces – Potato pancakes.

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Weird Food Week

Hello again everyone, I’m bringing my recipe forward a couple weeks this time to celebrate national curry week. Or is it national chocolate week?

God knows why we’re having both at once this year but I’ve had vague plans for chocolate curry for a long while so it’s about time that they saw metaphorical print.

It’s time I made a chocolate madras.

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