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Jade Monk Taking Matcha Green Tea Mainstream

Jade MonkJade Monk is redefining the ready-to-drink tea category with its first-to-market line of organic, cold-brewed matcha green teas. Now available in five regions of Whole Foods Market, Jade Monk’s new line of premium matcha tea is a delicious, authentic offering of some of the finest tea to ever hit the mainstream beverage set.

Utilizing a cold-brewing method, no heat is ever introduced during the production of Jade Monk’s USDA Organic and Non-GMO verified matcha beverages. To extend shelf life of the perishable tea, Jade Monk uses high-pressure-processing, a new method of cold pasteurization that applies high pressure (over 30 tons worth) to inactivate bacteria and other unwanted hazards without the need for high temperature pasteurization, which can be detrimental to matcha’s delicate flavor and whole food nutrients.

“Matcha green tea is unlike any other tea on Earth,” said Mike Fulkerson, Chief Commercial Officer of Jade Monk, LLC. “Because matcha is made by delicately grinding the entire tea leaf into a fine powder, all of those whole food nutrients and health benefits that regular tea bags carry away stay in the beverage and are consumed when you drink Jade Monk matcha.”

Although matcha may seem relatively new to the US, it has been consumed for well over 800 years throughout the Far East. For nearly a millennium, the Japanese have been honing and refining the art of matcha production, which has culminated in a distinct green tea that contains unrivaled flavor, nutritional properties and health benefits. Studies have shown that just one serving of matcha green tea contains the antioxidant equivalent of over 10 servings of traditional steeped green tea. Matcha drinkers also benefit from the whole food trace minerals and amino acids that the tea contains.

The Jade Monk ready-to-drink beverage line consists of four initial flavors: Unsweetened, Slightly Sweet, Mint + Honey, and Matcha Cleanse. The line can currently be found in the refrigerated beverage sets of Whole Foods Market stores in the Pacific Northwest, Southern Pacific, Florida, South and Mid-Atlantic regions.

Spaghetti Without the Gluten from Explore-Asian

By Richard Thompson

For those who have to avoid their favorite pasta meals comes Edamame Spaghetti from Explore-Asian, a new spin on pasta that’s not only good, but healthier too. Gluten free, organic, vegan, kosher, non-GMO and approved by the American Heart Association, it’s not just ridiculously delicious but it’s sure to appeal to a wide range of health-conscious shoppers.

Retailing from 3.99 to 4.79, Edamame Spaghetti is made simply from organic beans and water. One serving has 24 grams of protein and 11 grams of fiber, packaged and ready to eat in just a few minutes. Add a little pesto for a delectable treat, but any sauce is the perfect complement. This is pasta reinvented.

For further information visit them at www.explore-asian.com.

Mitsuwa Marketplace Celebrates Japanese Cooking Class Anniversary

Mitsuwa Marketplace is celebrating its one year anniversary of the Shoku-Iku cooking class on February 1. Since February 2014, Mitsuwa has successfully held 11 free Shoku-Iku classes on the first Sunday of each month, with over 200 families gathered together to make different Japanese-inspired dishes. Mitsuwa Marketplace is hoping to promote healthier lifestyles in the young generation through the cooking classes.

“Shoku-Iku” is a Japanese term, but its meaning of promoting healthier living through food is applicable across all cultures. It came to Mitsuwa’s attention that the term “Shoku-Iku” is important for most modern families to learn and practice. It’s not easy to get kids to eat healthy, well-rounded meals. However, one way to get them interested in good food is to teach them how to make it themselves through hands-on cooking.

All Shoku-Iku recipes are healthy, creative yet simple enough so that kids can make their own dishes in 10-15 minutes. Shoku-Iku cooking classes are not to train the next chefs, but to foster a lifelong notion of a healthier lifestyle and the importance of family ties.

Not only are children learning how to make different kinds of food, they are also learning about the importance of healthy eating habits while spending time together as a family. Masami, the cooking class instructor and mother of two teenage boys, said, “I also enjoy that as my kids get older, we are able to spend time together in the kitchen. Not too many moms know but cooking doesn’t have to be just a mother’s job. If she can engage her kids, it can be bonding time when the family can prepare dishes together.”

The next cooking class, February 1 (Sunday), will mark the one year anniversary of Mitsuwa Marketplace’s Shoku-Iku cooking class.

The Mustard Seed Sauce & Dressing Company Brings Restaurant Flavor to Retail Shelves

2-Mustard Seed-CSSThe Mustard Seed Sauce & Dressing Company has been crafting unique Asian-inspired sauces and dressings and serving them in the company’s eponymous restaurants for over 35 years. Now, consumers have access to these sauces in their local grocery stores with the recent launch of the company’s retail product line.

The Mustard Seed Sauce & Dressing Company product line includes Asian Oil & Vinegar, a delightful Asian twist on the classic vinaigrette; Osaka Sauce, the company’s signature sauce, delicious on chicken; Teriyaki Grill Sauce, a finishing sauce for proteins; and Ginger Dressing, a signature dressing that doubles as a finishing sauce for meat or seafood. The four sauces and dressings are also available in a variety pack.

All Mustard Seed sauces and dressings are all-natural, and they contain no MSG, trans fats or preservatives. The products are made in small batches from the highest quality ingredients.

For more information, visit www.mustardseedsauce.com.

Passage Foods Releases Study: Cooking Sauce Sales Simmer

Passage Foods has released its latest edition of “Passage Briefs.” This edition presents a report entitled “Cooking Sauce Sales Simmer.” Within the brief, the U.S. cooking sauce market is explored through a detailed analysis of the industry and its consumers in five sections.

- Current cooking sauce market: The cooking sauce market has seen 25 percent growth in sales in the past decade, which is expected to continue due to factors such as at-home cooking, health, and less grocery spending.

- Ethnic flavor trends: Consumers have shown an increased interest in ethnic cooking sauces and food options. This category has quickly expanded to a high percentage of market share.

- Product claim trends: Consumer are looking towards alternative options for their at-home meals alongside the health food trend that has steadily been growing in the U.S.

- Millennials and cooking sauces: The Millennial Generation is expected to impact the economy of the U.S. as they continue to enter the work force. Their interests are driving the cooking sauce market expansion.

- Future of the cooking sauce market: A look into the current cooking sauce market provides insight into the development of the industry in the years to come.

The report is now available for free by contacting info@passageusa.com or calling toll-free at 800.860.1045 ext. 204.

Click here for news about Passage Foods’ latest product introductions.

Ezaki Glico Introduces Pattyna Ice Cream Treats

PattynaEzaki Glico, maker of the Pocky brand of snack products, is kicking off the school season with the release of Pattyna brand of ice cream treats.
The new ice cream sticks come in grape, choco/coffee, vanilla, and green tea flavors. To the delight of kids of all ages the ice cream also comes in two shapes – flowers and hearts.
“The new Pattyna flavors mirror our popular Pocky flavors,” said Shunsuke Nakai, President of Glico USA.  “If you love Pocky and Péjoy you’ll love Pattyna ice cream.”
Ice cream lovers can find Pattyna in Asian grocery stores nationwide. “There’s nothing like a frozen treat when you get home from school during those first few weeks of going back to school,” said Nakai. “It’ll help keep that carefree feeling of summer alive!”
Ezaki Glico promises several more new and exciting ice cream flavors as well as other frozen snack items in the near future.
For more information about the company, visit glicousa.com.

Specialty Food Ad Contest Winner Announced

Vanda Asapahu, founder of Ayara Thai Sauces, is the winner of the Specialty Food Association’s second annual advertising contest for specialty food professionals to tell a compelling story about their passion for specialty food.

Asapahu’s story was selected from 142 inspiring entries about family businesses, culinary breakthroughs, childhood memories, career changes, and more. The prize is a professional ad that will be part of the Association’s national advertising and marketing campaign. The ad will be featured in leading specialty food trade magazines, online, and at the Winter Fancy Food Show in San Francisco. The show takes place Jan. 11-13, 2015.

More than 12,000 votes were cast in the not-for-profit trade association’s second annual “My Story, My Ad” contest. The 10 entries with the most votes went on to a final round of judging by a panel of advertising and specialty food professionals. The contest was open to members of the Specialty Food Association.

Ayara Thai Sauces was born out of requests from loyal fans of Asapahu’s family-owned restaurant, Ayara Thai Cuisine in Los Angeles, for takeout containers of its distinctive sauces. This company’s Ayara Thai Peanut Sauce was a finalist in the Specialty Food Association’s sofi™ Awards contest for the outstanding products of 2014.

“As our restaurant grew, visitors came to love not only the food we prepared, but also the sauces served with them,” says Asapahu. She adds that customers would return with “amazing stories of how they creatively used our sauces to impress their friends and share in the joy of cooking.”

The contest also included a People’s Choice Winner, based on a popular vote. The trio of women behind Simply Panache, maker of Mango Mango mango preserves, emerged as winners. They are Tanecia Willis, Lakesha Brown-Renfro, a military spouse, and Nzinga Teule-Hekima, a family physician. The company is based in Hampton, Virginia. The prize is an iPad.

For the winning entries, click here.

The contest spotlights the Association’s brand for the industry, “Specialty Food. Craft. Care. Joy.” It is designed to highlight the people behind the small businesses that fuel the $88.3 billion specialty food industry and the innovative foods and beverages they create and bring to market.

“This year’s entries showed how much passion and care our members bring to their work,” says Association President Ann Daw.

The panel of judges included Katherine Alford, Senior Vice President, Culinary Productions, Food Network; Tom Cook, Executive Creative Director, York & Chapel; Tracy Nieporent, Partner and Director of Marketing, Myriad Restaurant Group; Beth Snyder Bulik, freelance writer for Advertising Age; and Denise Purcell, editor of Specialty Food Media.

Passage to Vietnam Lemongrass Chicken Stir-Fry Sauce

US-3DPack-Vietnam1Passage Foods offers lines of ready-to-use simmer sauces made from all natural ingredients to help home cooks create authentic restaurant-quality Asian dishes in 20 minutes or less. Newest to the brand is the Passage to Vietnam™ Lemongrass Chicken Stir-Fry Sauce, which draws together ingredients such as lemongrass, galangal and lime into a stir-fry with the traditional flavors of Vietnam. Just reading the list of ingredients is like stepping into a white tablecloth Vietnamese restaurant.

Vietnamese cuisine is one of the fastest growing segments in the food category, according to Mintel, and the growth of the Vietnamese population in the U.S. augurs for increasing acceptance and familiarity with Vietnamese flavors among the mainstream population, particularly as American palates become more adventurous and more Americans travel outside the country, where they have the opportunity to taste authentic examples of other culinary traditions.

“It is important to recognize the growth of cuisines from countries like Vietnam,” said Passage Foods’ Mark Mackenzie. “Currently, 80 percent of the Asian category sales originate from mainstream products designed for the U.S. palate, however, the category growth is being driven by authentic products and recipes. With our Lemongrass Chicken sauce, we tried to capture the most authentic and fresh recipe to satisfy the consumer looking for a true Vietnamese meal.”

Nona Lim Asian Noodles Make Gluten-Free Salads

This summer, up your noodle salad game with some Asian rice noodles by Nona Lim. These extraordinary noodles are sold in the refrigerated section fresh for delicacy.

Pad See EwWhether you just want some delicious new Asian inspired flavors or think there might be a gluten-free person at your picnic, these are great new products to grab. Find them in Whole Foods nationwide.

Nona Lim Noodles have a suggested retail price of $4.39 for a 14.8-ounce package.

Belcour Cookbook Launch Coincides with Fancy Food Show

Belcour cover imageBelcour Blue Mountain Preserves, makers of savory condiments, pepper sauces and fruit preserves, taps into its’ rich Jamaican, Chinese and French culinary heritage to release a beautiful 270 page storybook cookbook, “Belcour: Jamaican, French and Chinese Family Recipes for Entertaining,” available at www.belcourpreserves.com.

This unique cookbook features the most well-loved family recipes of chef and author, Robin Lim Lumsden paired with captivating stories of legendary entertaining among several family generations. From love stories and family gatherings to how her grandfather became co-founder of the iconic Red Stripe Beer company and more, this cookbook is an instant classic with its mouth watering imagery and effortless step-by step instructions.

“I’ve gathered an eclectic collection of recipes derived from my Jamaican, French and Chinese culinary heritage passed down from generation to generation, all using our preserves and condiments,” says Lumsden. This cookbook will expand and diversify your recipe repertoire and help you create new, delicious and cosmopolitan meals that your guests will both savor and remember.”

Belcour’s Blue Mountain Honey, which is produced on its own apiary, is home to more than 75 bee colonies and is the signature flavor that sweetens all of the delectable tropical preserves, hot sauces and condiments. Each bottle is full of ripe, flavorful, Jamaican fruits, vegetables, herbs and spices that are cooked slowly, crafted with love and sourced from local Jamaican farmers.

Belcour will exhibit in booth #2168 at the Fancy Food Show in New York City June 29-July 1, with nine of its versatile gourmet condiments, including pepper sauces, fruit preserves and savory condiments. Learn more about Belcour Blue Mountain Preserves at www.belcourpreserves.com.

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