14 products

Meet Claire of Welsh Homestead Smokery

I was brought up surrounded by plants and as a result have always grown my own fruit and veg in my garden. In 2016, we moved to a smallholding in West Wales and started to grow a lot of our own food in a quarter of an acre veggie plot and poly tunnel with the idea of preserving and storing lots of our produce.

I then started to experiment with smoking as a flavour and as an additional way of preserving. I figured if you could smoke a Jalapeno chilli and turn it into Chipotle, why can’t you smoke varieties of chillies? And why do people usually think of smoking and think of fish? Why can’t we smoke vegetables and salts and herbs? What about different flavours of bacon? We want to inspire people to try new flavours and to experiment with adding smoke as a layer and depth to their recipes.

We only cold smoke here (rather than hot smoking like you can do on a BBQ). This means we are smoking at a very low temperature and the smoke is flavouring and drying what is being smoked, but we are not cooking it.

Our bacon takes around three weeks to produce. The pigs are locally farmed Welsh Porc from small family farms which are often smallholdings where they will be given scratches under the chin, able to dig the dirt with their snouts and fed mixed varied diets, not produced in industrialised systems on slats – this can be seen in the varied sizes of our rashers which change with the breed and ages of the pigs. We first trim the meat and then cure and flavour it. Meat needs to be cured before cold smoking to help remove moisture and to prevent microbial growth. It then goes through a drying process and then is cold smoked.

Our chillies are all grown in the UK by some excellent chilli growers, in unheated polytunnels harnessing the best of the British sunshine. Once we receive the fresh chillies, we smoke them all and then freeze them until we are ready to make smoked chilli jams.

Our salt is produced using only wind and solar power, not evaporated using grid electricity like many other salts. The salt and herbs are also cold smoked and then dehydrated to ensure they are perfectly dry. We can then blend the salt, herbs and spices together for our mixes.

We work very closely with our chilli growers, our salt producer and our meat farmers – most of these are small family-owned businesses who all take great care and pride in their products for us. We truly believe that for too long we (as a society) have relied on cheap, international supply chains in a global food market. These often involve chemical use, food miles, human exploitation and huge environmental changes and we as consumers are often unaware of these impacts. I feel many people have lost the connection that food gives us to the land, weather and nature.

Where is your happy place?
In my polytunnel!!!!!

2 truths and a lie about yourself and/or your business?
My husband ran away with the circus
I used to work for the Hell’s Angels
I can weave blankets

What’s the strangest dish someone has used your products for? Have you tried it?
Crispy bacon topped fudge! I haven’t tried that, but I did use the crispy bacon (made using our ground bacon) to top a banoffee pie!

  • Carolina Reaper Smoked Chilli Jam
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  • Scotch Bonnet and Mango Smoked Chilli Jam
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  • Red Habanero and Strawberry Smoked Chilli Jam
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  • Lemon Drop Smoked Chilli Jam
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  • Fatalii Gourmet Smoked Chilli Jam
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  • Chipotle Smoked Chilli Jam
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  • Smoked Cumin Salt
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  • Smoked Sage Salt
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  • Smoked Rosemary Salt
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  • Smoked Chilli Salt
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  • Smoked Cracked Black Pepper Salt
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  • Rum and Molasses Smoked Bacon
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  • Maple Smoked Bacon
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  • Chilli and Paprika Smoked Bacon
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