Today I’m reviewing a jalapeno jelly. I don’t really have my usual fancy verbose introduction here, because frankly, I’m not too accustomed to this sort of product. In the past, I’ve tried various fruit jellies that featured jalapeno as an extra ingredient, but I’ve never really gone for the straight Jalapeno jelly. That means I’m entering this one a little blind, especially in comparison to my other reviews. Nevertheless, it’s rare that a product really lets me down, so I’m still going in with high expectations for this Texas Gunpowder Pepper Jelly, by SuckleBusters.
Sugar, Jalapeno Peppers, Apple Cider Vinegar, Pectin, Citric Acid
That’s a beautifully simple list. You don’t get a long list of complicated preservatives; instead, this jar contains only the bare essentials necessary to make a good jelly. Judging from the fact that sugar occupies the top slot, I’m expecting something pretty sweet here, but I wouldn’t really have my jelly any other way.
This is the typical jalapeno-green color, or perhaps a bit darker than the standard supermarket jalapenos. It’s got that normal jelly consistency, too. The only real surprise for me, and it’s a little disappointing, is that there are no seeds or chunks of jalapenos. Then again, this is a jelly, not a jam or preserves.
Smell and Taste:
To be honest, this doesn’t really smell like much. I get a mild jalapeno smell, but nothing that strikes me as spicy. Even the vinegar, which is normally a rather potent component of most products, is pretty subdued. It does smell sweet, though, which speaks to just how prominent of a role the sugar plays in this jar. That assessment is true of the taste, too; I mostly taste sugar, with a bit of the jalapeno burn in the background.
Because there is a little bit of heat to Texas Gunpowder, I’m going to give it a Medium. By no means will this have most of you reaching for the nearest carton of milk, but it is spicy enough to register. Now, here’s where this gets difficult. I like this stuff, I really do, but I don’t think it quite captures what it is going for. I’m giving it a Nominal, with the disclaimer that such a rating is by no means awful. I just wish it tasted more like jalapeno than it currently does.
Any bread product is the obvious pairing, especially with a bit of cream cheese (especially if you have some jalapeno or chipotle cream cheese). What sounds really neat, though, is the idea of using this as a finishing glaze. Those of you who like a bit of sweetness with your meat may find this Pepper Jelly the ideal sugary complement for whatever you’re grilling.
SuckleBusters does sell actual preserves, just not of the jalapeno variety. Though such products don’t really fall under the scope of this website (this isn’t EAT MORE SWEET!), I want to try them. If anyone has sampled this company’s fruit preserves and can recommend them, leave a comment below.