It all got started in 2014 when I started my first garden in my backyard. I had always liked peppers and wanted to try something different. So I looked around the internet and found the Carolina Reaper Peppers from Puckerbutt Pepper Company and I was hooked!
So the first year I grew them just for fun and at the end of the season, I had a ton of the most insane peppers I’ve ever tried. After freezing the peppers while figuring out what to do with them, I started looking into making hot sauce. Now 3 years later, I run my own hot sauce company making the same sauce I made back then but in a lot bigger quantities.
My operation is a small one, I rent space in a commercial kitchen. I will be graduating from a Food Entrepreneurship class in May from a Kickstarter Kitchen program in Tulsa, OK. They prepare and help people turn their food idea into a food business!
My hot sauce is fermented using a lacto-fermented process, I use organic natural yogurt and strain off the whey and use it as my culture. I make sure everything blends smoothly together. My best selling hot sauce is a Carolina Reaper based sauce called Raging Reaper. It is very hot but has all of the unique flavor of the Reaper pepper but wont send you to the water to cool your face.
I also dive into the sweet/heat candy. I make Carolina Reaper Infused Gummy Bears. I call them Raging Gummy Bears! I boil the pepper flesh and the water from that I use in my gummy making process. They start out sweet and finish with heat!
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Cottage Lane Kitchen was founded by me in 2010, and it isn't only my business name, but also refers to a secret lane in Chapel Hill, NC where our family homestead was built in the 1950s. Four generations of my family have cooked and preserved spicy peppers out of love and tradition in that kitchen.
The last homemade batch of my family's spicy pepper relish was made by my Grandfather in the early 1990s. He grew chilies around the outside of the house and harvested and pickled them during my summer visits. I remember him watering the empty tin cans he buried beside each pepper plant.
Normally the Craft Hot Sauce Podcast interviews hot sauce makers all over the world. This episode is more of a riff from Brian the host about some of the things his hot sauce company Craic Sauce got up this summer.