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This year we grew a LOT of jalapeños in the Global Gardens polytunnel!

Inspired by Mexican cuisine and some of the local chilli growing pros in Cardiff a.k.a. Chris Fowler and Tom Frost, we realised smoking them could be a great way of preserving the flavour into 2019.

The kind folk of Spit and Sawdust, Cardiff's finest skatepark offered up their smokers - and we couldn't refuse.

The weather made us work for it though - the first date we had to postpone due to gale force wind and the second date we had to postpone due to pouring rain. Third time lucky on the 15th December 2018, the skies were calm and the clouds had passed. So we were ready to get the smoke on!

As well as a top-notch indoor skate park and cafe, Spit and Sawdust have a yard with a pizza cob oven and a fire pit. Tom, Christian, Nia and Becca helped us set the fire alight and we proceeded to lay the ready to be smoked in the 'bin'. They also rustled up a tasty chilli - served with fries or fire baked jacket potatoes. Yum!

As we waited for the chillies to get properly smoking, we also tested our tasted buds - savouring the red basque, poblano, jalapeño and habaneros grown at the garden. Phew some of these were very hot - but some chilli champions emerged - Lloyd and Eric, good work on your chilli chomping skills!

After an hour, we turned the chilli over. By 9pm they were ready to take home to the dehydrator. 12 hours at 55 degrees C and they are dried and ready to spice up the chillies of 2019!

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