Seasonal Recipe Winter Warmers from HEAT

As the nights are getting colder, you might be interested to find out how well your house retains the heat. Daniel has possession of an infra red camera and is willing to pop round and show you where your house is leaking heat. Contact him at

Seasonal Recipe - Chilli Sauce
I first got the chilli habit about 10 years ago when I was given a piri-piri plant. This habit grew into an obsession & about 4 years ago we moved into a house with a large south facing greenhouse. This meant I could experiment with different varieties of chillies (from the meek to the mind-blowing!). Many people think that it’s just about the heat, but different types of chillies have very distinctive flavours, particularly notable with the scotch bonnets, habanero and nagas. Chillies are relatively easy to grow and as a beginner you don’t even need a greenhouse, as long as you have a warm windowsill. I usually sow my chillies in March, pick the earlier varieties at the end of summer and the larger hotter varieties later in the Autumn. Select your crops on the basis of the space you’ve available – the hotter varieties (scotch bonnets, habanero and nagas) can take up a lot of room and grow up to about 1m in height.

Don’t be daunted if you get a glut of chillies, they freeze well or you can dry them in a low oven for a couple of hours. I also cold smoke my dried chillies over oak or apple wood as this gives an amazing flavour. Alternatively you can make a great chilli jam (which I sell in the Hungerford butchers shop - Wham-Bam Chilli Jam) or chilli relish (recipe below).

For those of you who would like to learn more about all things chilli, sample some recipes or get some free seeds, I’ll be at the Hungerford Farmers Market on Sunday 18 Dec on the HEAT stall.

Chilli Sauce
To reduce the heat just use milder chillies. Makes 6 jars
20 Scotch Bonnet chillies, chopped and de-seeded, 2 small onions, chopped,
400g tin plum tomatoes, a good squeeze of tomatoes puree, 4 cloves of garlic,
100mls red wine vinegar, 50g brown sugar, salt & black pepper.

Gently fry onions and garlic until translucent (don’t brown). Add chillies and cook for a couple more minutes until soft. Add sugar, vinegar, seasoning and tomatoes and simmer for 10mins.
Blitz in a food processor and pour into jars whist still hot.
Put the lids on loose and allow to cool.
This will keep in the fridge for about a month. Use as you would a relish with cold cuts or cheese or add to soups, stews or marinades to give a bit of a zing.
Simon Flanagan

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