itsu is a new brand to me so I could not resist buying this bottle of sauce on a recent trip to Sainsburys. It turns out that istu is a brand developed by some of the early pioneers (their words) at Pret A Manger, the have a number of itsu eat-in/takeaway shops in London and spreading. This sauce is part of their healthy, Asian inspired range.
The sauce comes in a soft plastic bottle with a screw release nozzle, similar to the now famous Sriracha sauce. At first taste it is just sweet with a mild chilli flavour, no chilli kick, but a few moment later a very pleasant blend of the chilli, ginger and garlic is spreading around my taste buds. The combination of flavour is truly sublime, I could eat this direct from the bottle with a spoon.
Ingredients: Chilli, Water, Sugar, Tomato Paste, Garlic, Ginger, Roasted Garlic, Modified Tapioca Starch, Salt, Vinegar, Preservative: Potassium Sorbate.
The ginger is not overpowering, the chilli is mild, the roasted garlic just seem to work so well, this sauce is no macho head banger, it is hard to say how much of a surprise this sauce is, I have just tried it with some prawns and I can still take the prawns, but they are enhanced by this sauce. it is not a sweet sticky dipping sauce, but for me I think it could replace them.
New from Tabasco are four new sauces:-
- Chipotle and Smokey Bourbon Sauce and Marinade
- Sweet Chipotle and Cola Sauce & Marinade
- Fruity & Fiery Habanero Sauce & Marinade
- Peppery Seep South Creole Sauce & Marinade
They have just arrived and will be reviewed as soon as we can.
All peppers, that is chilli peppers and sweet peppers have an unripe colour that changes as the pepper ripens up to another colour. There are several unripe colours, the most common are green (dark to very pale green), yellow and purple, and ripe colours include red, yellow, orange and brown. The most common colour change, of course, is from unripe green to a ripe red. However, there are several other colour combinations.
Why is it important to know whether a pepper is ripe? Firstly, the flavour of a pepper is quite different between ripe and unripe (think of the difference between a ripe and unripe tomato) – the ripe being sweeter. Secondly, for chillies the fruit will be at their hottest when they are fully ripe.
At what stage should you eat a pepper? There are no rules, a pepper can be eaten at any stage of maturity and ripeness, it is entirely up to you.
For more information and a great selection of chilli seeds please visit Sea Spring Seeds
I picked this sauce manufactured by The Bay Tree up from my local garden centre, they have an excellent farm shop and restaurant attached and often have interesting products, this one caught by eye as it mentioned Roquito Chillies. The Logo you see on the bottle is registered to Leathams Ltd in London, in the UK they seem to distribute a range of Roquito based products. Well it turns out that the Roquito chilli are a variety of Jalapeno that has been ripened to red (That is from the Roquito facebook page).
Ingredients: Water, Roquito Chilli Pepper (25%)[Chilli Pepper, Water, Sugar, Vinegar], Cider Vinegar. Lemon Juice, Onion, Salt, Thickener: Maize Starch, Garlic, Spices
Well back to the sauce which seems quite thin in the bottle, on opening it smell slightly sweet with a twang of cider vinegar, as you can see from the picture the colour is dark red. The taste is immediately that of the vinegar and then a little warth of the chilli arrives, it is not a very hot sauce, but it has a peppery taste that starts to reminds me of a cayenne style sauce. This sauce is to thin to be used as a tomato sauce, but would be ideal sprinkled over some chips or as part of a salad dressing.
I would be good to know a little more about the Roquito Chilli Pepper. I can find very little information on the Leathams and other web sites, it could just be a brand name that covers any number of chilli varieties, hopefully some one will let me know.
I did however quite like this sauce, it will no doubt get used up in and on things over the next few weeks, at only £2.99 for a 250g bottle the price is not over the top.