Great beaches like Grace Bay and swanky resorts like The Somerset aren’t the only hot things in the Turks and Caicos Islands these days, or so I came discover on my last visit to Da’ Conch Shack a few months ago.
That’s the first place I encountered PeppaJoy, an all-natural hot sauce born and bred in TCI.
When the local population is outnumbered by people from seemingly everywhere else in the world, as it is here, an authentically home-grown product like PeppaJoy qualifies as a pretty big surprise. That PeppaJoy also turned out to be really good only added to my excitement over finding it.
Mild in comparison to such firey flavorings as Bello, Jerome’s or anything packed with Trinidad Scorpion Peppers, PeppaJoy bears a zesty and somewhat fruity profile, the heat playing more of a supporting role. In this way, it’s absolutely ideal in conch salad, the hints of guava and lemons in the mix bringing out more of the lemon, lime, and orange juice in the salad.
The heat in PeppaJoy may come from elsewhere in the Turks and Caicos, but this product is pure Providenciales through and through. Its creator, a man named Delano Handfield, developed PeppaJoy after completing active duty in the U.S. Military and returning home to the Blue Hills area of Provo – just down the road from Da’ Conch Shack – in 2010. Finding job prospects scarce, Delano decided to make a business out of what had once been solely a hobby.
Within a year, PeppaJoy had made a successful debut at Da’ Conch Shack and was off and running. Back then it was known as Sakaja, a name Delano still uses for his business. The PeppaJoy brand was adopted in 2014.
There’s a lot in the name for those who love a little island heat in their food, as this is one Peppa (sauce) that definitely brings lots of Joy.