Heck That’s Hot: Monthly Subscription Box #Review

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We always enjoy subscription boxes because they introduce us to new brands and even new foods. Like with gift baskets, I find most subscription boxes have more down time where maybe 1 to 2 items are fabulous and the others are duds. You then have companies, which add so much little filler that getting a real sized item is impossible.

Not with Heck That’s Hot!

I love spice and can tolerate heat very well. My only caveat is that the heat better bring some flavor and make the food worthy of eating. Empty calories to me, also means eating something that is not great but you are eating it to make whatever you spent on it not be wasted. I can state that Heck That’s Hot provided a box filled with items that were full sized and the individual size (i.e. one serving) products were included in multiples. Yup, you are not trying to share a one-bite chocolate piece between a family of four! Some of the products I was familiar with when it came to the manufactures like Lindt chocolates. I also liked that there was care in packaging. The parcel was double boxed and the items were safely packed. Even the chips were not a mess and that also means care is shown and you not only want that when a box is being sent to you, but it’s something I seek when I give boxes as a gift. Heck That’s Hot will not make you look poorly in that aspect either and I like that they take pride and care in how they handle products.  Hey, I got chocolate sent that was not even melted and I reside in California!

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Now, Let’s See what you Get:

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The Better Chip in Jalapeno Flavor-

This a company I have seen and heard of but never actually tasted their products.  The chips are made with real ingredients making them simple but so tasty.  You see real jalapeno pieces and these are not green little flecks.  I’m talking about diced jalapeno that is mixed into corn masa, which is used to make these delicious round shaped chips.  They deliver heat and crunch, plus they are not a salty mess.  What’s not to love?

 

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Van Holten’s Hot Mama Pickle-

This item made us laugh when we saw it.  It’s a large size pickle and not your everyday product, so I love that Heck That’s Hot included it.  I love firecrackers and this pickle is like the big version of them.  We refrigerated the pickle and I first took a slice to see how it tasted and it was a pleasing flavor, you get that pucker power from the brine but the spice is good tasting.  The pickle also has a good texture and crunch!  You get a heat that is zesty but not over the top.  I made a spread for burgers using the pickle (diced).  Very simple with Mayo, Chipotle powder, and the Hot Mama Pickle.  I even have 1/2 left to enjoy as-is or in another recipe.  I’m thinking this one would wake up any tater’ salad.

 

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Lindt Chocolate Squares in Chili Flavor-

Okay, I have had these little squares in what I thought was every flavor…..I was wrong.  The base is dark chocolate and chili extract.  I have had spiced hot chocolate drinks and even Mexican chocolates but these are nothing like that.  The chocolate used is velvety smooth and because it’s dark, it has sharp notes but the chili pepper is not in flake form or anything grainy within the square itself.  Just smoothness and the spice is almost pepper (as in peppercorn) and it just intensifies the cocoa notes.  That is all.  It’s sort of like a play of salt on chocolate and what that does to your taste buds.  I really enjoyed it and will seek this chocolate out due to the intense flavor it delivered!

 

I always look at boxes and their worth is also measured by what I can make with them and this item along with the following two, I was able to create a meal and still have left-overs.  That is what makes a subscription box worth it to me and Heck That’s Hot provided quality products that go beyond just a few dips with a chip, put jar in the fridge to just throw it out 2 weeks later.  We actually enjoyed cooking with what was provided in the box!

 

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Julia’s Sassy Dip Mix in Chipotle Seasoning-

It’s a dip, a mix to even a spice packet.  The seasonings provide a base that can be used in sauces, combined with meats to even making spreads.  This allows me to use the product more than once and that is more bang for your buck!  I found blue corn taco shells that just again was adding something new to the everyday rotation.  We have had blue corn chips but never taco shells, and it’s hard finding something not enhanced with dyes, so you bet I grabbed them when it was just simple blue corn.  I had fresh ground chicken and beef in the fridge, so I made Tacos using Julia’s Sassy Dip mix.  I tasted the seasoning and it was a little sweeter than I desired, so I just added more chipotle flakes and powder.  Some red Anaheim Chilies, onion and you simply brown each meat in a separate pan.  That simple.  I love how easy it was to make!

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Habanero Pepper Salsa From Hell in Beyond Hot- 

I prepared myself and I love Habanero to the point I use the actual pepper to make a Habanero Rice.  Everyone thinks the orange little pepper is just an innocent sweet pepper and then it just hits you.  Habaneros have great flavor and are very versatile when cooking.  I got tired (bored really) of jalapenos that tasted so mild anymore because it’s hard to find spicy jalapenos.  We opened the jar and it smelled spicy, like it kicked my nostrils with the heat but once the jar was opened for over a minute, the intensity in smell went away.  We tasted and the base is very tomato-y like sort of the notes you get from a jar of canned plum tomatoes and paste.  Then comes the vinegar and then the slight heat.  The salsa has flavor but not intense in Habanero, so it’s workable.  I worked it into some rice and it was perfection because my Husband did feel the vinegar was more intense than the heat.  A 1/4 cup of the salsa I added to the water, after frying the rice with veggies and chilies and 22 minutes later…..Spanish rice that has some heat but pairs perfectly and does not overpower the dish.

 

 

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Bravado Spice Co. Ghost Pepper and Blueberry Hot Sauce-

I know…..what!  I thought the same when I saw this sauce but I’m always open to tasting new foods.  I checked out the ingredients and you have Blueberry, Raspberry, Vinegar, the Ghost Pepper and then just salt and pepper.  That is all!  I start thinking how people mix pineapple with pork, and then add heat via chilies.  I make and eat that, so why not give this a chance?  First I tried the sauce on a chip and it’s hotter than the Habanero Salsa above.  I love Ghost Pepper but feel the poor pepper is misused and mostly there for name than flavor.  The Bravado Spice Co., did not leave the Ghost Pepper behind and did it justice by adding flavor.  Think of the fruit as base, there for texture and to control the bitter notes peppers to even vinegar can give.  It off-sets the heat just a bit and keeps everything in check.  This sauce would be great to marinate shrimps with, like a ceviche.  Great for a dressing in a Mexi-style salad but I think it shines best with lighter meats like poultry and fish.  I’m thinking Tilapia tacos next time and I may even crust them with blue corn by just grinding the taco shells that came broken in the box (there is always 1 or 2 that never make it whole).  Great sauce and I am open to trying that Pineapple one on a smoked pork butt sandwich.  I added some to our chicken tacos this time!

 

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Ass Kickin’ Habanero Popcorn-

Yee-haw!  I don’t usually eat popcorn from a microwave bag but that donkey is mocking me.  I have not popped this baby yet but will be this weekend.  It’s movie night, I got a free RedBox code, so I’m set.  It’s even raining in California, so things could not be better.  It’s Habanero and it takes the boring out of poppy corn any day.

 

Retail Price Point: They have two box sizes to choose from with the lowest $20 and then a larger $30 sized box.  Shipping is always free, so you pay on a monthly basis the price above and that is all.  You also have the freedom to cancel your subscription, so Heck That’s Hot is not your gimmicky company that has hidden charges or trying to bog you down with long term commitments.

 

Verdict:

Do I need one?  I know I always add something here to see where I land on purchasing an item but this is a must try.  Try a month, see what comes and see what you make.  That is how I think of boxes of this kind work and why some of us love them and others don’t.  I can say that there is enough in a box that makes the price point fair and then you think of weight and shipping, but wait that is included into the Heck That’s Hot price point.  That is where I see the worth because it gets delivered to your home and the items are full sized and the ones that are portion sized is enough to share.  No one gets left out, so you shouldn’t either and check-out a company that is bringing something different to the table.

Heck That’s Hot and their zesty connections at:

  • Wedsite
  • Facebook
  • Also, please make sure to check-out their FB page as they run contests for free gift cards, boxes, and so forth, all the time!!
  • Twitter
  • YouTube
  • #HeckThatsHot

 

I received the above product(s) free of charge from Heck That’s Hot.  I am not obligated to provide a positive or favorable review, just my honest opinion.  My review is based on my experience with the product and/or brand, which may differ from yours.

 

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VREMI: Organic Garden Seeds for 10 Vegetable Varieties #Seeds10

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Even though we re suffering the Winter’s cold, getting ready for Spring and especially growing vegetables is a simple “can-do”. You can start germination indoors via pods or as the days grow warmer, you can even start off in a planter!

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VREMI provides you with a nice array of vegetable seeds that are manufactured by Natural Green Seeds. The seeds are organic and a nice variety. The stater packet includes:

  • California Red Pepper; 50 seeds
  • Mid-East Cucumber; 30 seeds
  • Radish; 75 seeds
  • Beef Tomato; 90 seeds
  • Carrot Sweet Crisp Flavor; 100 seeds
  • Mid-East Courgette (Squash); 20 seeds
  • Cherry Fox Tomato; 90 seeds
  • Riverside Onion; 80 seeds
  • Hungarian Hot Wax Chilli Pepper; 50 seeds
  • Jericho Lettuce; 150 seeds

You also get labels for each vegetable in sticker form and 10 Popsicle-style wooden sticks.

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Retail Price Point: $19.90 and the product comes in a nice (cardboard) box to keep future packets in or any unused seeds.

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All you need is a little dirt, water and love to start growing your own organic garden. Each vegetable packet includes a full illustration on the back-side with simple directions about what you are growing. Mistake-proof and a great way for any family, kids, to even just adults to get started.

I have not started growing yet but will as soon as February hits,  I will be getting an early start. My only con about the package is that the seed packets have an area where the expiration date should have been noted, it was left blank so I don’t know how long the seeds will be viable, but I have no worries as long as I plant them soon.

Get a healthy start in 2015 and start your own garden with VREMI:

 

I received the above product(s) free of charge from VREMI TM.  I am not obligated to provide a positive or favorable review, just my honest opinion.  My review is based on my experience with the product and/or brand, which may differ from yours.

 

Hagensborg Chocolates: Wild Boar Bars

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Who doesn’t love chocolate? Who doesn’t love exotic chocolates? Hagensborg Chocolates is based in Vancouver Canada and makes chocolates using European techniques. They have a cute little theme and story in their biography, which introduces you to “Snuffly” the pig, frogs that are princes, fairy godmothers and even a castle. There is even a piggy family with names! I personally like Rose because she has wings. Very whimsical and gives their products that little touch of love. Their products are accessible from the United Kingdom, United States, Japan, to Canada.

I had tried two of their truffle pigs and loved them! They were milk chocolate, which is not my first choice in the chocolate world but after having them, I was craving more so I knew I had discovered a good thing.

My parcel arrived with their newest creation, the Wild Boar bars. Like their other wonderful creations, the Wild Boars have a story. They travel the world and catch ingredients from each content and incorporate it into their magical bars. The boxes alone are eye-catching and once you open the box, you see little “chomp” bites along the bar made by these continental boars (this time, I couldn’t blame Hubby). No detail is not missed by Hagensborg Chocolates from the molds they used to make these bars, to the ingredients added. My parcel included two “passports”, Italy and Indonesia. So let’s begin…..

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Italy- Made from the milk chocolate family and described to include truffle salted almonds which are toasted. The almonds are sprinkled with olive oil, Ritrovo (rare black truffle) truffle and salt. The bar contains 85% organic ingredients and also 39% Cocoa.

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The taste test: After getting over how cute the bar is and reading all the information on the box, it is almost like a mini travel brochure so I appreciated the escape. Every ingredient is of the finest quality and they even list origins for each, like the almonds being from California. I find that when I break off a piece, it almost melts down when you bend it because the chocolate is so soft and velvety. I put a piece in my mouth and allow it to melt. The texture is smooth and even though salt is listed in the flavor ingredients, you get zero granules from it. No crystallization, just a perfect creamy creation! I love the flavor of the chocolate alone as I agree with their statements, it is of fine quality. I eat many “fleur de sel” products, so I am familiar with how they are paired with caramels to different degrees of Cocoa. I did find my first bite to be salty if you allow it to melt and dissolve in your mouth, but not so salty that I did not bite again. My second bite I chewed and it was a perfect balance of flavors. The almonds are not whole, so every bite allows you to get enjoy a small chunk. You do pick-up a slight earthy and grassy notes that may derive from the olive oil and truffle they added. I did not find the flavors overwhelming and they did compliment the bar well. I did enjoy the almonds but just wished I had a few more chunks with every bite.

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Indonesia- This is the one I was skeptical and unsure about and you will soon know why. You have 71% Cocoa in this bar, plus 85% Organic ingredients. This Boar bar is described as rich dark chocolate with cashews, spiced with garlic, chilies and lime. The cashews originate from Indonesia and the seasonings added are in dried form. I have had “spiced” chocolates but never one with garlic added to it or even lime. I was super curious.

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The taste test: You uncover the bar and the minute you cut it, you perfume your surroundings with a delicious chocolate smell. Any apprehension I had about the flavors floated away that instant. When something gives off such a delicious aroma, it can’t be ignored! I take off a corner and this chocolate is harder in texture as it created a snapping noise, not like the milk chocolate boar bar. I put a piece in my mouth and allow it to melt and I love, love, love their dark chocolate. Great quality and texture. Perfect amount of acid you get from the Cocoa but no bitter or wax like texture you get from cheaper brands. I can easily state this in the top three of dark chocolate makers I prefer to have and enjoy! You get almost get a coffee deepness that comes through, somewhat like a perfect espresso. Once again, very smooth and velvet in texture. The cashews are chopped and knowing the nut is buttery in nature, it just compliments the dark chocolate flavors. I never knew cashews went so well with dark and I hope to see this combination in the future. This bar had a good balance of nut and chocolates, so I was happy. The chilies come through but do not rest on your tongue where you would be overwhelmed, the flavor rests towards the back of your throat and I liked how it did not interfere with my enjoyment. Just a touch of spice flavor but no serious heat that burns. The garlic does not come through like it would imagine on garlic bread. You get the garlic flavor and it’s not roasted, more of like when it’s raw (untouched). I did find certain bites left a bitter taste if they were heavier on the garlic. The chocolate is so delicious that I did not care. I just kept eating and had to stop myself.

I recommend Hagensborg Chocolates and I do not view them as a gimmicky company, but one that seriously knows how to create chocolate. If I had a store near by that carried their chocolates, I fear what would happen to my waist line. Many “Chocolatiers” do not have a passion into their art and just think of how they can stretch a cocoa bean to yield the maximum profit. Hagensborg has taken the route of “What is the best way I can showcase this cocoa bean?”. I highly respect a company that does this and I was a fan before of the brand, but the boar line secured that position solidly. If you can add uncommon ingredients to chocolate and still be delicious, you seriously know what you are doing!

Please take a trip over to Hagensborg Chocolates and fall in love with their piglets and boars.
Webite- http://www.hagensborg.com/
Twitter- https://twitter.com/TrufflePigBar
Facebook- https://www.facebook.com/HagensborgChocolates

I see the boar has traveled to other areas of the world and I hope to catch his new destinations soon and share them with you!

I received the above chocolates from Hagensborg for free. I have no obligation to provide a favorable/positive review, just my honest opinion. My review is based on my experience with the products, which may differ from yours.

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