Palmerston North

A chilli wind blowing in from Feilding

We first came across Chilli Wind sauces at the Foxton Spring Fling last October.  A bunch of teenage boys were jostling in front of the Chilli Wind stall, daring each other to try the Racing Fuel, Chilli Wind's hottest sauce. It was created as a tribute to the Manfield Race Track in Fielding. 

We've had at least one bottle on the go at home ever since, and now we have it in the cafe for you to try too.   The sauces are made in Fielding by Pete Hawley who left a career in winemaking to make something much more delicious - hot sauce.  He grows the chillis himself and turns them into a range of sauces and chutneys.  We carry the fiery Racing Fuel - excellent on poached eggs - and the gentler BBQ sauce, which has a rich, smokey flavour.  Just want ketchup?  Pete doesn't make that but we do have keep a bottle of big-brand ketchup in  the kitchen if you absolutely must have it.

Chillis, whether in sauces, marinades, pickles or curries, are super good for you.  The heat comes from capsacin oil which, Pete says, has proven benefits for sufferers of arthritis, chronic fatigue and insomnia.  It also gives you a natural buzz as your body releases endorphins to counter the perceived 'pain' from the chillis' heat.  


The sweetest sugar


We're using organic, unrefined fair trade sugar in our cakes and biscuits.  Our sugar is a glorious golden colour because the way it is milled locks in the natural molasses from the cane rather than stripping it out.  The molasses gives the sugar a fudgy depth of flavour not found in refined white sugar. 

Apart from the flavour benefits, we prefer our fair trade unrefined sugar because is produced where the sugar cane is grown, meaning it has had the value added where it matters the most – in the country of origin – not in a refinery elsewhere.  Fair Trade certification gives us confidence that the Indian farming cooperative that grew our sugar was paid a reasonable price for the cane they grew and milled. It means the farmers can cultivate the quality of their crops, send their kids to school, get health care, and build a sustainable community.

That the sugar is also certified organic makes it even sweeter for us. Organic sugar cane fields are green cut and are not burned or treated with herbicides or synthetic fertilizers - better for the growers and their families, better for the environment, and better for the person who eats it. 

So go on, try that Coconut Orange Pannacotta.  Y'know you want to.