Spice blends form the backbone of many of our new dishes this summer. Follow our guide to the flavours they bring.
Herby with a bit of a kick, this spicy flavouring has evolved from the long and varied heritage of New Orleans. Find it in our King prawn and crab gumbo.
Aromatic and peppery, Cajun spices make a fantastic rub for grilled meats or in rice dishes – such as the warm and punchy Louisianan-style jambalaya.
This dried, smoked jalapeño chilli seasoning will add a complex hit of spice and medium heat to whatever it’s paired with. We’ve used it in our potato salads and mayonnaise, as it perks up creamy dishes wonderfully.
Scotch Bonnet chilli gives a hot and fiesty Caribbean flavour to dishes like our Jerk tuna steaks. Native to Jamaica, it also contains allspice, which lends a fragrance and taste similar to cinnamon and nutmeg.
2 tbsp olive oil, plus extra for brushing
1 onion, finely sliced
1 red pepper, deseeded and cut into 1cm-wide strips
2 x 180g packs asparagus spears, trimmed and cut in half (widthways if thin, lengthways if thick)
4 tbsp crème fraîche
2 tbsp chopped fresh coriander
2 tbsp chopped fresh parsley
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 jalapeño chilli, deseeded and finely chopped
Juice of 1 lime
1 bake-at-home ciabatta loaf
Whether you're cooking a curry or firing up the grill, beer makes a great match for spicy or fragrant summer food. Find your perfect pair from our online range.
For smoky meat
With its sweet grapefruit hints and bitter finish, our exclusive American India pale ale goes well with pulled pork or barbecued meats.
For tandoori chicken
Frangrant spiced chicken and curry needs a fruity accompaniment, like this citrussy Summit IPA brewed for us by Allendale Brewery in Northumberland.
For BBQ burgers
Load your burger with plenty of chilli-infused relish and grab a bottle of our American pale ale – the tropical fruit flavours are great with spicy red meat.
For Asian dishes
If you're serving up a spicy Asian-style broth or Thai curry, make sure you have this White IPA with its refreshing hints of pine and citrus on hand.
For a hint of spice
If you're looking for a great all-round pairing for spicy food, try our full-bodied Staffordshire IPA rich with punchy hops and sharp citrus fruit.
How often do you wonder "how spicy is it?" when ordering or cooking food? What you should be asking is how hot a dish is, because heat and spice are two very different things.
Spice things up
The term spice covers a whole host of plants and herbs ranging in flavour and intensity from warming cloves to fragrant cinnamon and sweet vanilla. While all of them have distinct characteristics, it's really only dried chillis (when a chilli is fresh, it's classed as a vegetable) and peppercorns that give food any real bite. When food is described as spicy, it can simply mean that they contain a blend of different spices. A chicken korma with its mix of cumin, cardamom, turmeric, ginger, saffron, cloves and bay could be called spicy, but you'd never say it was hot.
Turn up the heat
Heat or piquancy is the sensation we get when we eat food that makes our palettes burn or tingle. It usually happens when we eat chillis, which contain a chemical called capsaicin – a naturally occurring irritant that produces a burning sensation in any tissue it comes into contact with. A chilli’s pungency is measured in heat units on the Scoville scale and can ranges from a red salad pepper (0) to super-hot varieties like the Komodo dragon and Spanish naga chilli (855,000-2,200,000). You can reduce the levels of capsaicin in chillis by cooking or pickling them.
Gumbo was originally made in southern Louisiana during the 18th century and is an aromatic stew of meat, shellfish and the Cajun holy trinity of vegetables: celery, onions and bell peppers. Try our gumbo recipe and enjoy a bowl of this hearty mix.
280g pack raw Honduran king prawns
200g jar Creole Paste
100g pack white crab meat
½ green pepper, finely diced
2 spring onions, finely sliced
1 celery stick, finely diced
2 tbsp finely chopped coriander
2 lemons, 1 juiced and 1 cut into wedges, to serve
½ x 125g pack spicy Spanish chorizo slices, quartered
675g ripe mixed tomatoes, roughly chopped
If you're after a quick meal with minimal fuss then look no further than our new in store malagueta chicken wings. Doused in a blend of Peruvian malagueta chilli, roasted red peppers, lime juice, tomato and garlic, these spicy little mouthfuls match up perfectly with our recipe for a refreshing Brazilian-style salad. Spice up your next break and try them both.