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spicefreak

Member Since 08 Nov 2015
Online Last Active Today, 01:51 AM

Topics I've Started

Chilli Pepper Pete's Zhoug

20 April 2017 - 08:40 AM

Welcome back, spice lovers, today we tackle the mighty Zhoug!

Not that it's actually that powerful of a heat but doesn't it sound like a cheesy Sci-Fi Villain?

 

This one, however, is intended to improve your health, not end it like that mighty space emperor, and it looks to do so by combining the antibacterial properties of chilli and garlic with lemon juice's vitamin c and a good deal of fresh herbs.

 

 

It was the first of Chilli Pepper Pete's sauces and even pre-dates the formation of the company.

Its labelling reflects this, being the simplest of their range with little more than their logo, its name and a brief description of the product.

 

Yet, despite its simplicity, the bold red from which the name is cut out stands out well from the bright yellowy green background that represents the sauce's flavour. A sharp, green taste with a fair bit of citrus, if its description is to be believed.

 

To find out if it lives up to its promises, I poured myself a spoonful.

 

zhoug2.jpg?w=680

 

Half liquid, half paste, this sauce doesn't seem to have stayed together too well but a good stir will sort that out nicely.

 

I can smell the citrus and herbs right away, with the cumin coming through just a little less powerfully than the strong coriander but it's a little less noticeable still in the taste, as the garlic content really makes itself known. This is very strong flavoured product.

 

Interestingly, though, the leafy herbs seem to have enough green, grassy flavour between them to transform the citrus elements from the lemon they actually are into something tasting rather more of lime. Which certainly works for this sauce.

 

And as for the chillies themselves, it uses the green thai sort, matching the colour of the other ingredients. They don't to the flavour of this sauce, though, being rather overpowered by everything else, but they do give it a nice, respectable

2.5/10

Heat

on the tongue that lingers as it dies away.

 

It's a pleasant medium burn that remains for long enough to be good and warming should you need it but this zingy sauce, or “zauce” as the company have dubbed it, is definitely more about its flavour. A strong flavour that apparently hails from the Arab country of Yemen.

 

That would technically make it Asian-styled but the taste of this product strikes me as much more reminiscent of north African cuisine, with its garlic and cumin providing a powerful backnote to its otherwise rather fresh flavour.

 

It has all the lime and coriander you'd expect from a jalapeño sauce but the jalapeño itself isn't there and that backnote gives it a very different feel overall.

 

It's not bad in the least but the sheer strength of its flavour takes a little getting used to. I would not use Pete's Zhoug as a pour on sauce but, thinned down a bit, it would make an excellent sauce for fish and maybe for chicken.

 

I also feel like it would be quite at home in a good few Moroccan and Tunisian dishes, as part of a unique pesto or maybe, just maybe, with Indian food. It does, after all, seem uniquely suited to pairing with lentils and chickpeas.

 

And, as for it being good for you, I wouldn't purchase artisan chilli sauce just for the health benefits myself but its ingredients sure do look like the thing to fight off a cold. When all blocked up, I could see myself eating this straight, if only to get some flavour back into my life.

 

Assuming I still have any left by that point.


The Rib Man's Holy Trinity Travel Set (Contains Expletives)

12 April 2017 - 04:54 PM

This week's blog post is a little break amidst a flurry of free samples to look at some sauces that really interested me. And, since it was as cheap to get the travel set as a single full sized bottle, I figured why not get and review them all at the same time?

 

Hello again everyone, today we’re taking a look at The Ribman’s sauces. All of them.

Because he doesn’t really make three different sauces, just the same one with slightly differing chilli content. And that chilli content doesn’t change the flavour anywhere near as massively as it did for the Melliculus Popping Candy.

 

But, while it is just three heats of one sauce, it’s a very interesting one that showcases a recent trend, allows me to explain some flavour science and provides an experience like little else.

If you don’t mind a bit of strong language, click that Continue Reading button and I’ll show you what I’m talking about.*

 

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This is what he calls his “Holy Trinity”, three bottles of sauce labelled “Holy Fuck”, “Christ on a Bike” and, the max heat, “Holy Mother of God”.

 

They’re all scotch bonnet and dorset naga sauces and they all technically contain extract but not the sort you’re thinking of. The Ribman doesn’t use chemically concentrated heat but rather the purified juice of green jalapeños. For extra flavour.

 

In terms of their packaging, they’ve come to me in what he calls a travel pack of 100ml plastic containers. The full sized versions look to be in glass bottles but I prefer what I got, for reasons I’ll explain later. For now, let’s look at the labels.

These are made from clear plastic too, really allowing the look of the sauce to take the spotlight but still having enough print on them to easily distinguish the three.

 

Holy f**k goes for the look of an old family crest with its shield outline and “The Rib Man” banner but the name of the sauce extends well past the edges of this, making it stand out even more than its bold text otherwise would.

 

There’s a heat scale on the side and tiny twin hammers crossing each other above the name but that’s otherwise it. It’s simple and it’s elegant but it doesn’t tell us much about the contents. It also doesn’t do much visually to compliment the name, though I think we can all guess why that might be.

 

Unlike Holy Mother of God, which embraces its name fully. It takes the exclamation and runs with it, placing an image of Saint Mary front and centre, between two banners that together form the product title.

But between her and the topmost banner, we see those hammers again, this time within a black circle that acts as Mary’s halo. And this clues us in to the fact that there’s more to this label than initially meets the eye.

That’s not Jesus she’s carrying, for one. It’s not even a swaddled baby but rather a disproportionately large bottle of sauce. And her wings? They’re the ribs she’s meant to go on.

 

It’s a clever little design but one that sadly comes out rather pixilated when forced into black and white with no mid shades.

 

And then we have my favourite design, the mid heat, Christ on a Bike. It’s not so cleverly done or anything, it is just literally Christ, on a bike, driving towards the viewer out of a white oval. All contained within a black rectangle that holds the sauce’s name and, when the same hammer circle is placed on the top, is oddly reminiscent of a phone booth.

 

It’s nothing fancy and, at this size, the hammers don’t even print properly but it’s whimsical. It’s just so silly and I love it for that.

 

Of the range, only the hottest tells us anything about the sauce from its artwork and even that is no more than we could get from the company name. They do, however, show us exactly what the sauce looks like with their clear bottles and heavy use of transparency.

 

They’re a wonderful bright orange from the combination of red chillies, dried tomatoes and yellowy olive oil. And we can see the herbs in them, making it oh so clear how thick these sauces are.

In fact, if they weren’t in squeezable plastic containers, I would have had a lot of trouble getting these onto my spoons.

 

trinity.jpg?w=636&h=377

 

From left to right, we see them in heat order. First Holy f**k, then Christ on a Bike and finally Holy Mother of God. The difference is quite interesting.

 

While they are all smooth, thick sauces, Christ on a Bike is just a little bit chunkier than the rest due to its extra chillies and, curiously, Holy Mother of God, despite having still more, is smooth again. It does, however, have a touch of red oil that the others don’t possess, hinting at a greater quantity of chilli juices within.

 

But, before I sit down and try these, it’s time for that science I promised you. These sauces, unlike the vast majority made in the UK, contain a good deal of olive oil. An ingredient that has recently started becoming popular in America but has, so far, hardly popped up on our shores.

What’s the significance of it? Well, it changes the texture. Completely.

 

You see, while we talk about layered “tastes” all the time, there are in fact only five that our tongue can detect: sweet, sour, salty, bitter and china’s favourite, the savoury meaty “umami”. Everything else comes from our sense of smell. Nearly everything, anyway.

 

Spiciness comes from natural chemicals that trigger the tongue’s heat sensors and creaminess comes into play when the tongue is coated with something so fine it can’t pick out the individual particles.

 

Usually, this would be some kind of melt in the mouth fat like cocoa butter or actual cream but, by adding oil to a chilli sauce, you end up with the resulting product blending down into a fine emulsion. A mix of ever so tiny particles that stay together not because they are bound to each other but because they are too closely surrounded by the particles that repel them to escape in any particular direction.

It’s the same trick that gives mayonnaise its creaminess and it works just as well here.

 

While I find the shear thickness of The Ribman’s sauces makes it a touch harder to appreciate, they do indeed both feel and even “taste” creamy. But that’s not even close to the extent of their flavour.

No, their flavour is intense, with the scotch bonnet coming through very strongly and some interesting olive notes coming from the oil but supported by their green jalapeño extract. And the scotch bonnets themselves are supported in flavour slightly by the nagas but also by the umami-rich dried tomato.

 

Yet it isn’t just the tomato that brings umami to the table as they all include some yeast extract to further boost its prominence, without going overboard and giving us that dark, salty flavour. And, while that’s the most prominent here out of the five things our tastebuds are set to pick up, all but sour are technically present in these sauces, though the bitterness of the dorset nagas is easily offset by the addition of sugar.

 

The maker hasn’t put enough in here to turn the sauces truly sweet but you can see its effects by comparing the range. Holy f**k does have some slight sweetness going on, while the extra nagas in Holy Mother of God bring it down so much that the sauce becomes properly savoury and the herbs become a bit more noticeable.

 

Not that I could tell you exactly what those herbs are because their leafiness blends rather well into the olive-like aspects of the sauces. At a guess, however, I would say that one of them is probably bay or curry leaf.

 

Likewise, the garlic and onions feel a little hidden beneath the rich, heavy, creamy chilli and umami overtones but they are certainly there, rounding the sauces out.

 

Yet there’s one thing I’m definitely not getting from this sauce, even in the slightest, and it’s usually a main ingredient. Vinegar. These sauces are entirely vinegar free and not only that but free from any major acids.

 

It’s a pleasant change but, without any other preservatives, these are going to have a short usage time once opened. Perhaps the three weeks and mandatory refrigeration mentioned on the bottles is actually true this time.

 

Regardless, these are good sauces that combine chilli flavour and heat with strong, rich dried notes and a thick, creamy texture. They are more spreadable than pourable but definitely worth the effort. However, despite them being completely vegan, they are clearly meant for strong flavoured meats.

 

They will go on ribs, they will go on burgers, they will go amazingly well on hog roast and they may well even find a home on ham sandwiches or peperoni pizza but I simply cannot imagine using them for any vegetarian purpose besides adding flavour to a creamy pasta sauce.

 

Not to belittle that particular use, mind you. Just some of one of these and a good helping of double cream will simmer down into an excellent linguine sauce that can, if you’re not veggie, be improved yet further by some small crab or bacon pieces.

And, should you want to go the other way and avoid all animal products, The Ribman’s range have enough creaminess of their own that you could easily achieve similar results with another thickish liquid like coconut milk.

 

In terms of heat, they’re not the strongest naga sauces I’ve tried but the way the scotch bonnet hits first and the dorset nagas follow up as they’re beginning to die down does produce a very pleasant two stage burn which, for the Holy f**k, peaks at the very top of a

3.5/10

Heat

that transitions from a slightly weaker mid tongue flame to that classic naga back of the throat burn.

 

It’s more like a scotch bonnet sauce with a little extra than it is a dorset naga sauce and it’s not even quite as hot as the hottest of scotch bonnet sauces. It is still hot though and it’s very enjoyable.

 

Christ on a Bike then ups this to a mid

4/10

Heat

that, just as you think it’s over, has one final punch left in it. A blast of hard and fierce naga throat burn that really pushes the upper limit of that number.

 

And The Ribman’s hottest, the Holy Mother of God, tingles the tongue a bit more before blazing its way backwards and growing to a fairly serious

5/10

Heat

that makes the nagas known.

 

All of these sauces are a little slow to peak and have a similarly slow fade afterwards but, while the other two are a nice lingering glow, Holy Mother of God still feels like it’s raging away for a good minute or so after the hottest point. They’re not the longest lasting burn I’ve ever had but they’re definitely not fleeting, either.

 

All three qualify as hot but they go from a supermarket’s top end but tastier to ghost pepper levels that truly reflect their specialist chilli content.

 

Realistically, I would say that there’s very little reason to get them all if you know your heat tolerance. They’re so very similar to each other that, if you’ve tried one, you’ve practically tried them all.

 

If you want something rich, strong flavoured and quite clearly scotch bonnet to slather on meat, though, any one of these will tick every box and do it with a uniquely creamy texture.

I would certainly recommend one of them but, while Christ on a Bike is my personal favourite for both flavour and label design, there’s so little in it that it’d be better to just get the heat that most suits your palate.

 

*Appologies for the contextually irrelevant 4th wall break, these posts aren't really written with you guys in mind. I just share them because I like you.


The Screaming Chimp's Original Hot Sauce

03 April 2017 - 08:00 PM

Recently I've recieved a lot of free samples to review for my blog and this week we're seeing the first of them. This particular one is brought to you in conjunction with a local business who wanted an outside opinion on the quality of these sauces. Here it is:

 

This week, spice lovers, we take another look at the first of my Screaming Chimp Samples and I figure, why not start with the basics? Their original sauce. The one that got their company going.

 

2017-03-24-11-46-511.jpg?w=457&h=1024

 

Designed as a hot but usable wing sauce, the makers’ choice of ghost, scorpion and fatalii chillies seems like a bold one.

 

“Ghost Pepper” and “Trinidad Scorpion” are names that hardly need any explanation these days as even the average person on the street has heard tales of the former’s insane strength by now. They’re plastered on the side of many a challenge-oriented sauce and always boasted about as a selling point.

And the fatalii, while lesser known, is definitely not a novice’s pepper either, having made itself known in the chilli community with a very unique blend of heat that hits well above its habanero-like scoville rating.

So to see them here, talked about like they were some gourmet flavour, is quite a surprise. A pleasant surprise, though, as they do actually bring a lot to the table in that department.

 

The ghost pepper, as I’m sure you’ve heard me say before, is an interesting all rounder of a chilli, with deep red, fruity and even citrus elements, all balanced such that different sauces can easily bring out different sides of it.

But its not hard to see what side they’re going for here. The scorpion and fatalii are both fruity chillies and so too are the milder (but still far from mild) scotch bonnet and lemon drop. All but the scotch bonnet have citrus notes of some sort and the lemon drop actually tastes very strongly of its namesake fruit.

 

And, if that wasn’t enough to clue you in, the sauce also contains orange juice, lemon juice and cider vinegar, all of which tend to produce a sharp and fruity flavour.

 

All that can be gleaned from the finely printed text on the sides of this bottle but the front actually tells us remarkably little.

 

Screaming Chimp’s branding is, as I mentioned in my introduction to the company, very strong. That three colour chimp logo, front and centre is practically unforgettable and its facial expression sure implies heat. If I were an average shopper who didn’t know they had an entire range marked with it, I’d be expecting a three plus from this one for sure.

 

And indeed, they have a three chilli rating beneath it, though we have no way of knowing from one bottle what their scale goes up to.

 

If the chillies they’ve chosen are anything to go by, we could be looking at something well in excess of my scale’s five but, on the other hand, the total pepper content of this sauce is a mere 5.2%. That’s not a high purity at all.

 

And, of course, being their original sauce, its red-backed name tells us very little. So I guess it’s time to find out what it’s like the old fashioned way.

 

2017-03-19-12-51-57.jpg?w=636&h=452

 

As it turns out, what we have here is a stinging heat, presumably from the scorpion and fatalii content, that rather resembles the chocolate habanero sauce I tried in january. It comes in fairly quickly, too, though not before the sauce’s flavour, and its peak strength is also pretty close to that habanero one. A

4/10

Heat

towards the low end of that number but definitely at the very top of what you might get with the more common habanero varieties.

It’s a good, rather throaty burn that doesn’t overstay its welcome or hit like a superhot product, despite technically being one. It’s definitely strong but its not outside the realm of what habanero and scotch bonnet lovers will be able to enjoy.

 

Most importantly, though, at least as far as I’m concerned, it has none of that floral taste and instead comes in a wonderfully fruity sauce. As I had expected.

What I wasn’t expecting, however, is where that fruitiness comes from.

 

The orange and lemon are certainly there but the main fruit here is actually the tomatoes. Fresh tomatoes, mashed and simmered down to act as the base of the sauce.

It’s something that we often forget but tomatoes are indeed a fruit and this sauce really makes that apparent. They do genuinely taste like one when prepared in this way.

 

The chillies that I was expecting to impart that fruity flavour actually don’t do a lot outside of giving this sauce heat, I’m sad to say, but the honey and sugar definitely pull their weight in counteracting the sourness of the more acidic ingredients. In doing so, they almost give the sauce a sweet and sour taste but its tomato, orange and lemon flavour remains its own unique blend.

 

If you’re wanting a sauce centred around its hot and fruity chillies, this sauce tries but fails to be that.

If, however, you just want a delicious fruity sauce with a good heat to it, then you definitely won’t be disappointed.

 

The Screaming Chimp’s Original Hot Sauce is an excellent choice in the flavour department, regardless of how minimally its pepper content comes through, and it would most certainly be at home on chicken wings as the makers suggest.

 

What I actually see this product doing best at, however, is acting as a cooking sauce to fry up chunks of pork, duck or tofu in a chinese style, perhaps adding noodles, spring onions and a few other vegetables, should you want a full meal out of it.

 

If this sample was mine to keep, it would be gone pretty quickly but it’s not. I have to return it to the shop it came from so that they can form their own opinions.


Strawberry, Raspberry & Kashmiri Pavlova

27 March 2017 - 07:38 PM

Unlike last month's extreme cinnamon recipe, this month's fourth post on my blog features chilli so I'll be copying it over. It is not, however, anywhere near as "red hot" as this subsection would have you believe, instead focusing on the interplay between milder peppers and fresh dairy. It was a goody but you'll have to make some changes if you want it hot. Here goes:

 

Another happy tuesday spice lovers. This week, I’m not bringing you my own recipe but rather a review of someone else’s.

I’ve noticed my own recipes creeping up in heat lately so I’ve decided to pick something mild from my new favourite chilli cook book.

 

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Heat by Kay Plunkett-Hogge.

 

Unlike so many others, this cook book isn’t just a case of adding chilli powder to regular recipes and it isn’t all about the heat, despite its name. In fact, Kay doesn’t even recommend anything above a half-strength habanero strain called “Trinity”.

 

But, rather than just looking at what this book doesn’t do, maybe we should take a look at what it does. Scotch bonnet and cayenne shrimp, gazpacho soup with hot smoky paprika, a thai green curry with bird’s eyes, chipotle beef ribs, jalapeño key lime pie and, today’s recipe, kashmiri chilli pavlova. Just to name a few of the wonders within.

 

This book contains recipes from all over the globe, almost all featuring their own specific chilli(es). Chillies that have been carefully chosen to fit both the flavour of the dish and, in many cases, its region of origin as well.

 

It is a chilli cook book with a lot of hard work and love put into it. One that actually cares about the peppers’ flavours. The perfect example of what a chilli cook book should be.

And we’re going to be making the dish from page 180, “Pavlova in Purgatory”.

 

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For the meringue base, we will need:

3 egg whites

175g of castor sugar

½ teaspoon of cornflour

¾ teaspoon of white wine vinegar

1 teaspoon of cornflour

 

Then for the creamy centre:

300g double cream

½ teaspoon of castor Sugar

1 drop of vanilla essence

 

And the topping:

400g strawberries

150g raspberries

50g icing sugar

25ml lemon juice

1 teaspoon of kashmiri chilli powder

 

The kashmiri being an indian chilli used in milder curries for its deep red colour and flavour. It has a little bit of heat but not too much, with the powder probably rating about a three on my scale.

 

It also has a bit of bitterness on its own but that and its heat will both be brought down by the rest of the desert. So let’s preheat the oven to 120°c and get ready to bake.

 

I say get ready because, before we begin, we’re going to have to cut out a 20cm circle of baking paper, grease it, dust it with a little extra cornflour and lay it on a baking tray. Then we can move on to making the meringue.

 

For the meringue, we need only the whites of the eggs. Unless you’ve specially bought pre-separated egg whites, this means you’ll have to carefully crack your eggs and pass the yolk back and forth between the two halves, letting the white drip out. And make sure you don’t pop the yolk because any traces of it will stop the whites from fluffing up properly.

 

2017-03-21-16-14-59.jpg?w=636&h=353

 

It’s a difficult task but one that, once mastered, will help you make a lot of good meringues, soufflés and other risen egg dishes.

After that, your only real problem will be working out what to do with all those yolks.

 

But they’re a problem for another time. For now we’re more interested in the whites.

These need beating with an electric whisk until they start to hold a peak like so:

 

2017-03-21-16-24-34.jpg?w=636&h=440

 

Then we can gradually add the sugar, roughly a third at a time, and whisk that in too, continuing to beat the resulting mixture until it’s about as stiff as you can get it.

 

Finally, gently fold in the cornflour, vinegar and vanilla essence, trying not to disturb the bubbles too greatly, before spooning the mix onto your baking paper base and popping it in the oven.

Its shape should look something like this, with walls at the edges to hold in the fruit and filling:

 

2017-03-21-17-24-45.jpg?w=636&h=595

 

Leave that in for an hour and a half and, while it bakes, we can prepare the topping.

 

To do so, stick your raspberries and kashmiri powder into a blender and turn them into pulp. Pour the result into a sieve and press it through as best you can to keep all but the seeds.

This can take a very long time and an awful lot of effort so I eventually resorted to a colander which, sadly, did let some seeds through. Fortunately though, not most of them.

 

So, having passed the first of our fruit through one of those two, we now have a smooth liquid to mix with our lemon juice and icing sugar. This makes the sauce for our strawberries but there’s no sense cutting them just yet. We might as well keep them fresh for now.

 

Once the meringue is done, however, we’re ready to go. Chop the tops off your strawberries and cut them into quarters, then toss them in the sauce until they’re nicely coated.

While the flavours infuse slightly, we’ll whip our double cream up to stiff peak point and stir in the sugar and vanilla essence.

 

After that, it’s just a matter of making sure that the meringue is cool enough and we can build our pavlova.

 

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Just fill the base with the cream and spoon your strawberries on top, pouring over any excess liquid. It can be just a tad messy but it’s an excellent creamy, fruity desert with a smooth, light and bubbly centre to its crumbly base. Not to mention a slight chilli tingle that I’ll call a

0.5/10

Heat

because it only hits me at all in the most fruit filled of mouthfuls.

 

And, once refrigerated, this light back of the tongue tingle contrasts with the chill of the fruit and cream just as the hard outer shell of the meringue does with its soft and springy core.

It’s these contrasts that really bring life to the desert but half an hour in the fridge does it some other favours too. A little extra time for the flavours to mingle allows the strawberries to soften a tiny bit and take up the sweetness of the juice.

 

I am very happy with how this recipe turned out but, while I actually rather like the fleeting hints of fire quickly doused by the cream, I could certainly understand if you want to go hotter. All I ask is that, should you plan to up the power of the powder, you pay close attention to its flavour.

 

This dish could easily accommodate something rich like ghost pepper, thai reds or maybe even the facing heaven “rounds” used in my mapo tofu but I’d stay away from sharper things like the red habanero and wouldn’t even consider branching out into other colours.

 

And, of course, should you like this recipe as much as I did, it may be worth checking out the book itself for more ideas.


Grim Reaper Foods' Vengeance Oil

27 March 2017 - 07:22 PM

Hey guys, here's last week's review from my blog. I'm sorry it's taken so long to reach you.

 

Happy tuesday all of you, today we’re going to look at the first of Grim Reaper Foods’ freebies, the Vengeance oil from their thai style gift box.

 

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It’s a chilli oil but, unlike most of the ones I’ve seen before, there’s a little more going on than just the chilli. This oil also has ginger and lemongrass for that authentic thai taste.

 

But, before we try it out, let’s take a minute to appreciate the Reaper’s hard work in packaging the Vengeance.

The bottle depicts the same logo we saw on their chocolate, a cartoony grim reaper, hands out and drifting towards the viewer, his chilli scythe strapped to his back.

There are a few differences, though.

 

On this particular product, we see the chocolate behind the reaper’s left shoulder (our right) replaced by a silhouette of the bottle itself and the flames that sprung from his right now seem to rise behind him like a deadly sunset. The brown at the top of the box is gold on this bottle, while those flames give off a red gradient glow that works with the black to create a rather ominous feel.

 

This time around, large chunks of Grim Reaper Food’s labelling is metallic, using beaten foil for fine texturing on most of its design but a far glossier, smooth finish for the reaper’s silver cloak and his scythe.

And I thought they’d spared no expense on their chocolate!

 

But, while it’s a stunningly good looking bottle, it doesn’t quite do as much to tell us what’s inside. At least, not visually. It’s all spelled out beneath the name.

Rapeseed oil with lemongrass, ginger and chilli, intended for use in salads and stir fries.

 

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And, in fact, as I pour myself a golden spoonful, I can smell the stir fry already. Fragrant, zesty and rooty, it reminds me of my dad’s chinese cooking, despite him never using lemongrass at all.

 

Which is weird because the lemongrass scent is actually more prominent than the ginger.

 

It tastes just like it smells, too, only a little fresher and more aromatic, with a long slow burn that builds at the upper back of my mouth until it reaches a rather high

3/10

Heat

then tapers away to a nice, lingering glow.

 

It’s definitely hot but it’s on the low end of it and the flavour is, indeed, unmistakeably oriental. It is, as expected, very different to the chilli oils I’ve had before.

So different, in fact, that it doesn’t even taste of chilli.

 

This is because all of the flavours in this oil have been added using extracts, in part to increase their potency and in part to make sure that each batch is the same.

For the ginger and lemongrass, this actually works really well but, for the chilli itself, the extract isn’t just flavour. And, because of the sheer heat it provides, the chilli extract has to be kept to a minimum to produce a usable product.

 

Not that you’d want the flavour of most extracts in anything you eat but Grim Reaper Foods do theirs a little differently and manage to make a surprisingly pleasant extract range that we’ll be taking a look at later.

For now though, I’m just a little disappointed that we don’t have the taste of thai reds in here.

 

But, aside from my missing the chilli flavour, I do actually enjoy this product a great deal.

 

Vengeance is not an oil I’d use on everything but that’s not because it isn’t tasty. It’s simply because it’s so undeniably thai that I don’t think it would fit with many other culinary styles.

For noodles and stir fries, however, be they thai style or chinese, this product is going to be right at home. It’s going to mean you have a well distributed flavour without those awkwardly large mouthfuls of ginger you’d occasionally run into when cooking such meals traditionally. But, besides that, I also feel like the oil would go wonderfully with anything that heavily features baby corn in either fried or grilled form.

 

And, of course, we shouldn’t forget its potential use as or as part of a salad dressing. It even comes with a plastic nozzle for that purpose, lettting you easily control the flow and drizzle it on carefully:

 

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So, in conclusion, Vengeance isn’t perfect but it’s still a good little product that’s well worth picking up if you’re as tired of the same old chilli oil as I have been. Or even if you just really like thai food.