Hi, everyone! My name is Kristi Kosina. For the holidays, it is a custom to exchange gifts with friends and family, and my husband, Brian Sellers, with his affinity for spicy things, was given a jar of spicy pickle slices. I am doing this review instead because Brian refuses to touch pickles of any kind. Apparently, he doesn’t have an affinity for “all” things spicy! I, on the other hand, happen to rather enjoy pickles on occasion and didn’t want this jar to go to waste, even if the fire risk warning rings true. So, here it goes.
Cucumbers, Water, Vinegar, Salt, Red Pepper, Alum, Calcium Chloride, Natural Flavoring, Sodium Benzoate & Potassium Sorbate (preservatives), Oleoresin, Turmeric & Yellow #5 (colors), Polysorbate 80 (emulsifier).
The label mentions red peppers, but it is not clear as to what these peppers are.
This jar looks like a standard jar of pickles filled with brine. Yet, at the bottom lie several bright red peppers. The side of the jar includes a sticker with a person running with flames attached. Below, it states: “Violently hot flavor inside: Can cause extreme happiness. Keep away from flavor challenged individuals as this may result in unwanted behavior.” As a once heat-challenged individual, I admit that I am a little anxious about the fire warning. Having seen my husband disappointed in such warnings in the past, I am uncertain if such a warning could be accurate. Nevertheless, I’m keeping my guard up just in case.
Smell and Taste:
Upon removing the lid, I get a nice whiff of pickles. Surprisingly, there is no hint of spicy aroma. My guard is lowered a bit. As I take a bite of pickle, my spicy receptors flare. I note the refreshingly natural flavor. The first few seconds of chewing make me remember why I usually go for the non-hot variation of pickled cucumber. Quick and acute pain shoot through my mouth, signaling me to reach for the refrigerator and retrieve a glass of milk to put out the fire. I know. I know. Brian thinks I am spicy pansy!
Since the heat of these pickle bites bring me to my threshold of heat tolerance, I will rate the heat as Mean. I rather enjoyed the fresh and natural flavor, and if it were not for the intense heat, I could eat these little slices right out of the jar, a handful at a time. I give them a Notable for flavor.
My first thought with these pickles is to put them on a burger. For dinner, Brian just happened to cook up some delicious half-pound all-beef patties. Naturally, I throw a few of these hot pickles on there. The addition of bread, cheese, and barbeque sauce happily decrease the heat intensity to a nice kick. Though a pickle falls out, and upon rescuing it with my mouth, the heat attack comes back!
I am pleased with the flavor, but perhaps I’ll stick with a more mild version in the future.