A few weeks back, H and I attended the second annual NYC Hot Sauce Expo, where we had the time of our lives sampling incredible, small batch crafted hot sauces in every flavor imaginable and meeting tons of great people. We also purchased and brought home dozens of bottles of those sauces, and I immediately got to work coming up with fun uses and recipes for some of our acquisitions.
Two weeks ago, I began a new blog series called Spicy Spotlight, where I share some of these products and my uses for them. No one is paying me for this; I am only sharing because I have truly fallen in love with each and every one of these sauces and the incredible depth of flavor that they have added to my food.
Another one of my favorite companies at the Expo was Horseshoe Brand. Horseshoe Brand produces their seven hot sauce flavors in small batches out of Rhinebeck, NY. H and I tried all seven at the Expo and came home with our three ultra-favorites: Cajun, Roasted Garlic, and Kiwi Jalapeno.
I thought their display, set up to resemble an old-timey wagon, was really elegant and eye-catching:
The quality of each one of these sauces is apparent before it even gets past your lips. It might be weird to say that a hot sauce is beautiful, but these are. They have this sort of thick, lustrous appearance that is very appetizing, and they smell amazing too.
And of course, the taste is fantastic–very fresh, very concentrated. The heat level varies among the different flavors, but my experience has been that each has a pleasant, uniform spiciness that does not overwhelm.
So what do you do with them?
Well, H and I are partial to drizzling the Cajun and Roasted Garlic on pretty much anything, or using them as a sandwich spread. For a sandwiches, they totally work straight up but are also SO GOOD mixed with a little Veganaise. The Veganaise-hot sauce combo also makes a ridiculously good dipping sauce.
It’s much emptier than that by now! In fact, we have used up almost all of our bottle of Cajun (and they are rather large) in under a month since the Expo.
As you could probably guess, Cajun and Roasted Garlic are also both fabulous for grilling tofu or other veggies:
As for the Kiwi Jalapeno, I could pretty much eat that one straight out of the bottle. It bears some resemblance to a salsa verde but has a rich sweetness that permeates and makes you want to taste it again and again.
I love Kiwi Jalapeno sauce mashed up with avocado for some delicious guac action. It also makes a fantastic fresh salsa. Here, I mixed it with a chopped yellow heirloom tomato and some avocado:
It would also be awesome in a fruit salsa. I’m thinking mango, pineapple, a little cilantro–YUM.
Finally, used as a dressing, it also makes salads very interesting! If you don’t typically add a spicy element to your salad, I highly suggest giving it a try. Something fresh and sweet like Kiwi Jalapeno sauce is a good place to start.
So there you have it! Another delicious, spicy star. Next week will be my final installment of Spicy Spotlight and will include a giveaway, so be sure to check back!