Potato Chip Review Face-Off – Herr’s Hot Sauce chips vs Ruffles Molten Hot Wings

As tribute to the Nick Cage/John Travolta movie…..we are going to have a Face (hand motion) Off.

Once again I picked up two crazy looking flavors, and surprisingly, I thought that these two chips would be very similar in taste, but they ended up being pretty different. Both in the intensity of the hot sauce hot, as well as the overall flavor.

First up are the Hot Sauce chips from Herr’s, and the description on the bag perfectly describes these chips, which is chips with a coating of dried hot sauce on them. You maybe get a little bit too much of the vinegar flavor, that you would have with a cayenne based hot sauce (such as Texas Pete or Franks.) But in actuality it’s the cayenne and vinegar that make these hot sauces who they are, so you really can’t fault Herr’s for trying to capture the full essence of a hot sauce on a wavy potato chip.

Lastly we have the Ruffles Molten Hot Wings, and these chips kind of surprised me, since I was expecting them to be close in flavor to the Herr’s chips, but they really weren’t. With the key difference being that the Ruffles have not only the hot sauce flavor, but they also have some chicken bullion added in, so that you actually kind of think that you’re eating a buffalo wing, even though you are eating a potato chip. I wouldn’t necessarily say that the flavor is “molten”, but they are mildly hot, and quite interesting for a chip flavor.

Unfortunately in the end I thought this challenge was going to be more like apples vs. apples, but it turned out to be more of apples vs. oranges. Both chips overall have a good flavor, it’s just that with the addition of the chicken flavor on the Ruffles, it puts them in the same category in my mind as the Baby Back Ribs chips from Herr’s, due to the addition of a “protein” flavor on the chips. But really, if you are looking for a chip with hot sauce flavoring, either one is more then adequate to satisfy your desire for hot sauce. I know it did for me.

Red Jalapeno Hot Sauce – v3 – October 2010

This hot sauce was one of those random ideas that I had, while looking at all the ripened jalapenos in the garden. At first I though about drying the red jalapenos into a red pepper flake, or maybe even smoking them for chipotles. But for some reason, I was more intrigued by the idea of making them into a hot sauce instead. Continue reading

Jalapeno Hot Sauce – v2 – August 2010

This year I went with a theme for making jalapeno hot sauce of “go big, or go home”, which I think that I more than accomplished.
When I was in Michigan two weekends ago, I had a little bit of free time on Saturday morning before I needed to go to a wedding in Northern Michigan. So I thought that I was swing by the Pontiac Farmers Market with my sister to see if they had any deals on peppers (jalapeno specifically) like they did last year. And once again I wasn’t disappointed. After a quick walk around to gauge the prices for a pint container of jalapenos (they ranged from $0.25 each to $2.00 a pint.) I finally found a vendor at the edge of the open air section of the market that was selling jalapeno’s for $1 per pint. I also noticed that the vendor had about 1/2 a peck’s worth of jalapeno’s in the back, which was in addition to the 3 pints on display. So I inquired how much they wanted for all the jalapeno’s they had, they quoted me $5.00, and I told them “sold”. So for $5.00 I ended up getting about 3.5 lbs of jalapeno’s, which is about $1.43lb, so not too bad price wise. Combine that with the 2.5lbs of El Jefe jalapenos that I picked from my garden, and we are talking about a lot of jalapeno’s. Continue reading

Jalapeno Hot Sauce – v1 – Oct 2009

I really like the jalapeno version of McIlhenny Tabasco sauce, more so then the original version. My favorite use of Green Tabasco is on scrambled eggs (now surpassing ketchup.) But it is also great as a condiment on a wide spectrum of Mexican inspired dishes, as you would expect it to be. But being the mad cooking scientist that I am, I’ve been tossing around the idea of trying to make my own version of that oh so delicious green hot sauce. With a tip of the hat to JRR for sending me the link to this hot sauce recipe from Tyler Florence over at Food Network, I was off and running. Here is my adaptation of Tyler’s recipe: Continue reading