Waitrose Introduces Exotic New Ingredients

This week, Waitrose & Partners is introducing 100 products to its Cooks’ Ingredients range including some new, and unfamiliar, foods for home cooks. The range has been refreshed to reflect the changing tastes of shoppers. From Korea to Turkey, Calabria to Japan, the range includes key ingredients from cuisines from around the world.

New products include Zhoug, a Yemenite hot green chili sauce; Black Limes, which add complex citrus flavors to slow-cooked dishes; Kalamansi Juice from South East Asia; Pul Biber, a Turkish chili flake; Ketjap Manis, a sweet soy sauce from Indonesia; Japanese Togarashi seasoning made from cayenne, orange peel and sesame

Taking inspiration from cookery books popular in the UK and developed with time-poor but adventurous cooks in mind, the launch reflects the rise in popularity of regional cuisines and casual entertaining.

Michelle Gibbs, product developer of Cooks’ Ingredients, says: “We’ve tracked the major cuisine trends in the UK, looking at which ingredients our most popular chefs use in their recipe books. Recently, we’ve seen a rise in popularity of South East Asian, Japanese, Korean and Middle Eastern cuisines coinciding with a more casual approach to dining, meaning that people are cooking more adventurously at home than ever before.”

“Our goal is to ensure that every home cook finds the ingredients they need to make that impressive dinner for friends or a more experimental dish they’ve never tried before. We want to take the stress out of cooking and make these often hard-to-source ingredients and shortcuts available for everyone.”

The range also includes more familiar products designed to help add flavor and speed up home cooking, including Garlic Purée, Nduja paste and Kimchi Paste. Porcini Powder, which is suitable for vegans, adds an umami depth to meat free dishes, and Black Garlic is a sweeter version used in Asian cuisine. A Guacamole Mix, made with fresh coriander, garlic, green chili and lime will help with a quick meal and a selection of curry kits are perfect for a midweek curry.

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Christopher Durham
Christopher Durham is the president of My Private Brand and the co-founder of The Vertex Awards. He is a strategist, author, consultant and retailer who built brands at Delhaize-owned Food Lion, and lead strategy and brand development for Lowe’s Home Improvement. He has consulted with retailers around the world on their private brand portfolios including: Family Dollar, Petco, Staples, Office Depot, Best Buy, Metro (Canada), TLW (Taiwan) and Hola (Taiwan). Durham has published five definitive books on private brands, including his first book, Fifty2: The My Private Brand Project. In 2017, he will debut his newest book, Vanguard: Vintage Originals, a visual tour of innovation and disruption in private brand going back to the mid-1800’s. Dynamic in his presentation while down to earth and frank in his opinions, he has presented at numerous conferences, including FUSE, The Dieline Conference, Packaging that Sells, Omnishopper and PLMA’a annual trade show in Chicago. Durham lives in Charlotte, NC with his wife, Laraine, and two daughters, Olivia and Sarah.