Wednesday 4 September 2013

Gran Luchito review

This rather intriguing package arrived at The Madhouse recently. After a squeal of "eeeeek is that a dead mouse?" from the Mini-testers and a fit of giggles from me, I settled down for a good look. It's not a rodent in any shape or form, it's a dried chilli, which was a clue to what I'd find inside. (In actual fact, it's a whole Pasilla de Oaxaca chilli, that you can use to make your own chilli oil, apparently. I'll definitely have to have a go at that.)

Inside the box, I discovered three products from Gran Luchito, a company who specialise in Mexican foodie products using the rare smoked chillis from the rugged Zacatepec hills of Oaxaca, Mexico. On their Facebook page, they explain :  "In Mexico, Gran Luchito Smoked Chilli paste is a flavour that’s immediately recognised. For everyone else, it’s an acquired taste. If you think you know chilli, think again. From the land that invented it. It’s a different kind of heat."

I started off by sampling the Gran Luchito Honey, which is a perfectly balanced blend of sweet Mexican honey and a powerful chilli kick. This would be fantastic as a glaze on ribs or pork before throwing them on the barbecue, or maybe for coating a whole roast chicken before putting it in the oven. It does have quite a lot of heat so you could mix a spoonful in with some regular honey to tone it down a little. I can't wait to get experimental in the kitchen with this one. It definitely has great potential.

Next up was the Gran Luchito Mayo, which has a lovely thick consistency. You don't feel the heat from this one straight away, but it does come through after a few moments, giving your tongue a subtle tingle rather than setting your tastebuds on fire ! This would be great for jazzing up an otherwise boring sandwich, but would also be fabulous as a condiment, served on the side of a plate of steak and chips, for example, as the French would have a Béarnaise sauce. This would also be fabulous for adding some zing to a tuna and mayo-filled baked potato or perking up Coronation Chicken or mashed potato. Again, I'm looking forward to thinking up other ways of incorporating it into recipes.

I saved the star product for last though - the Gran Luchito Smoked Chilli Paste, which has become something of a sensation in the UK and has had rave reviews from all manner of top foodie types. I tasted a little bit on my finger and it was like dipping my tongue in a volcano, with a slow build-up of heat rising gradually in intensity ! It's more than just heat though, it also has a lovely rich, almost tomatoey flavour, reminding me of a smokier version of harissa. A little goes a long way so you need to use this sparingly (I advise you to keep some crème fraîche handy to cool things down if you're a bit heavy-handed to begin with) but it's such a versatile ingredient that would be great to add to casseroles, sauces, pasta sauce, glazes - just about anything really. The Gran Luchito website has a few more suggestions - eggs, steak, tacos, cream cheese, roast chicken, chilli con carne, stir fry ... It's become the third element of my "holy trinity" of seasonings - salt, pepper and a tiny hint of Gran Luchito, whenever what I'm cooking needs a little oomph, whether or not it's a Mexican dish.

I had to smile when I read the description on the website : "When you try the product, the first thing you'll notice is the smoky flavour, but then you'll get the full depth of the flavour; a hint of agave sweetness, perhaps the nuttiness of garlic and of course a medium heat." Well, all I can say is, call me a wuss but if that's medium, I wouldn't like to try hot !

star rating : 5/5

RRP : Gran Luchito Chilli Paste £4.99, Mayo £3.29, Honey £4.99 

for more information :

Disclosure : I received the products in order to write an honest review.

Other reviews you may be interested in :

Douwe Egberts Enticing Chocolate Flavour Coffee review


  1. I have won this kit the other week on FB, mine arrived without a "dead mouse". :) Going to try it on a few recipes and will also do a post. So far only tried the mayo, it does have a nice kick to it. It was lovely in a sandwich with chicken leftovers.

    1. Ooh I'll be looking out to see what you come up with :)


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...