I like, no I love, spicy foods. I’m particularly fond of anything peppery, except for pepper sauce. There has always been a bottle of the stuff in my fridge, waiting for that infrequent use in recipes that call for a quarter teaspoon, or “to taste”. Some folks use it liberally on food at the dining table, but I just never understood why. To me, pepper sauce is too thin and watery, blazing hot, but not very tasty.
Karen picked up a bottle of Sucklebusters Texas Heat Original Pepper Sauce while we were shopping at Central Market. It sat in my refrigerator alongside my usual brand for a while because, again, I’m just not a big pepper sauce fan. I cooked some vegetables last week that were a little bland and needed something to kick up the flavor. The Sucklebusters Pepper Sauce caught my eye. On opening the bottle, I knew right away that Sucklebusters was different. Smelling some pepper sauces might induce a sneeze or watery eyes and their aromas have never been particularly appetizing to me, but Sucklebusters smelled delicious! No wimpy, thin sauce here; Sucklebusters is thick. The company’s website claims the pepper sauce’s heat is as oppressive as Texas summer. If you live in Texas, or have visited the state in August, you have a pretty good idea about the heat index of Sucklebusters! But the taste is more than simply hot; it has complex flavor that sets it apart from ordinary.
Dan Arnold created his pepper sauce to spice up his own cooking. As he and his wife, Cheryl, began searching out healthier foods, they realized that many seasonings contained “bad stuff” — MSG, fillers, dyes, preservatives, and others. In 2006, they decided to develop and market their own artisan seasonings with natural ingredients, and Sucklebusters was born. You must read the origin and meaning of the Sucklebuster’s name — it is quite unique. Their website displays their extensive product line, including the very intriguing “Texas GunPowder”, all-natural ground jalapeno peppers, and “Texas Gold Dust”, an all-purpose spice blend. The online store has some gift packs that would be great for barbecue chefs.
Oh, and the bottle of my old brand of pepper sauce? In the garbage!