ABA Review Specialist – Michael Rose – taste-tests the DL Jardines Range.
DL Jardines are a Texas Hill Country based company who have been making Sauces, Spice Rubs, salsas and other condiments on their ranch for over 30 years.
Previously only available to purchase directly from the States, the good folk over at Texan Imports are now stocking and distributing most of the DL Jardines range including their hot sauces, spice blends, Texas chilli kits and their famous BBQ Sauces in Australia. I was lucky enough to have received a care package of the various products to review but, to be completely open and honest I was already well aware of this stuff (I’ve currently got a bottle of their Texas champagne in my cupboard and a bottle of the Mesquite bbq sauce in my fridge. But I wasn’t going to tell them that!)
So let’s start with the BBQ Sauces.
In the range available in Oz they have the Mesquite, 5-Star, Killer and Sweet Texas varieties. All of them come in very generous sized bottles (510gms) but then again, everything is bigger in Texas right? So I’m not really all that surprised. They tell me the best seller in the range is the Mesquite but my favourite would have to be without a doubt, the 5-Star. It’s tangy and fruity and has a really unique flavour quite unlike anything I’ve ever had before. That being said, all of these BBQ sauces are fantastic and surprisingly none of them are all that sweet (even the Sweet Texas isn’t that sweet) which means they work really well as a table sauce too. It should also be noted that all bar the 5-star are gluten free, if that’s important to you.
Seasonings and rubs
I was given 3 Spice rubs to test – Fajita, Steak Seasoning and 5-Star.
I have to admit, I’m a bit of a purest when it comes to seasoning and generally for steaks I only use salt and sometimes pepper… maybe. But after giving these bad boys a whirl I’ve got to say that I’m very impressed, particularly with the Steak Seasoning. It has a whole heap of flavour with hints of garlic, celery salt and rosemary but none of it is ever overpowering. It also provides a good foundation for an awesome crust.
Again, HUGE jars (between 328gm – 389gm) so very good value for money.
Anyone who knows me, knows I love hot sauce! Not the stupid ones with Jolokia or Carolina Reaper peppers – They hurt! But rather, the kind you can add to food to accentuate the flavours without having to guzzle cold milk afterwards.
Jardines offer a number of hot sauces in their range – The Texas Champagne (already a favourite of mine), The Texas Kicker & Blazin Saddle (both Habanero) and a Cactus Habanero green hot sauce. Yes you read right – a hot sauce with prickly pear cactus! And it’s every bit as unique as you would imagine. A little chunkier and a little milder than the other two Habanero varieties but a clear winner for me – I cant wait to have it on a fish taco!
Texas Chilli with a bag O’Fixins Kit
This is just chilli con carne, right? WRONG! Its Texas red and it is different trust me.
This cool little string tied bag has 4 other bags within. The first is the spice blend packet. The second is the red hot chilli flakes. The third if the Masa flour and the 4th is bell pepper (capsicum) and celery flakes.
In essence you brown some mince, add the spice packet, bell pepper packet, water and passata and cook down. Then you add as much chilli flakes as you can handle followed by the masa flower to thicken and voila! You have a delicious bowl of Texas red and its far better than anything you can get from Old El Paso trust me!
So the next time you are looking to bring a little south to your mouth look no further than the DL.Jardines range of delicious Spices, Salsas and Sauces!