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The Chili Blender

Hans KelgtermansChili products

The Chili Blender creates sauces, snacks, herbs and jams based on chili peppers. Only the freshest and finest ingredients are used to ensure optimal quality and flavour. We strongly believe that chilis are not only for the lovers of everything spicy so we have developed a range of products with varying degrees of spiciness. This way, everyone can enjoy the rich and powerful flavours of these unique fruits. 

I had been cultivating and processing chili peppers for a few years before observing that there were very little locally produced chilli products on the market here in Belgium. Most are imported and, much to my disappointment, tend to be 'as hot as possible'. This encouraged me to take the step earlier this year to develop and market my own locally produced chili products. 

I do everything myself. Literally. From cultivating and picking the fruit to coming up with the recipes and actually making and bottling all The Chili Blender products. I also designed the logo and the labels used and do the photography for my website and social media. 

My ambition with The Chili Blender is to bring chili peppers to a larger audience. Behind the spiciness is in fact a large array of fruity smells and flavours that can bring a different dimension to any dish. The fun part is having the bottles on the table so that everyone can determine for themselves their own level of spicy tolerance!

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Describe the creative process from idea generation to final product.

1. Come up with interesting flavour combinations for the peppers as well as the other ingredients. The focus is on trying to bring out the fruity character of the peppers, not necessarily their spiciness.  
2. Experiment in small batches - playing with the quantities of each ingredient used and getting the flavour just right.
3. Make the final product in large batches, bottle and label it.

Where does your inspiration come from?

Inspiration comes from other spicy products as well as every day recipes. I am always looking for flavour combinations that initially do not seem to complement each other at all. 

What did you want to be as child?

Astronaut.

Which (creative) Belgian do you admire?

Leo Baekeland, the scientist. As a chemist, I am always looking for formulas and recipes to create new products. This curiosity is reflected in the development of new sauces.

If you were not doing what you are doing now, what would you be doing?

Something in the culinary world.

Tell us something that typifies you but that we do not already know…

I am quite the perfectionist. Everything needs to be perfect before I launch something - the flavours, the look, the design... I am also known to be somewhat impatient!

"Behind the spiciness is in fact a large array of fruity smells and flavours that can bring a different dimension to any dish."

Posted at 26/07/2018
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