September Food and Drink News – Are we having an Indian summer or is autumn well on its way? The weather seems so changeable at the moment. With this in mind, I have a mix of products to recommend to you this month.
If you’re watching your health, 100% natural and no added sugar ketchup brand, Real Good is perfect. It’s just relaunched its award-winning ketchup, and the new recipe contains 80% less salt compared to other popular brands. With only 0.32g salt per 100g, in comparison, Heinz Ketchup has a whopping 1.8g salt per 100g. It’s a really tasty ketchup and alongside the tomato, Real Good also has two reduced salt barbecue sauces, (70% less salt Spicy BBQ sauce and 60% less salt Smoked BBQ sauce). Real Good Ketchup is made with Mediterranean tomatoes for an authentic taste, and all ingredients are 100% natural and plant-based. It’s also vegan of course, and 14 allergen free. Available in 310g recyclable squeezy bottles (RRP £2.40) from Ocado, Amazon and Whole Foods Market.
As the mornings are becoming cooler, you’ll be pleased to hear that Quaker has launched a delicious new Caramelised Biscuit flavour to its Oat So Simple porridge range. Inspired by the flavour of traditional Belgium speculoos biscuits, the new porridge pairs the warmth of sweet cinnamon and caramelised brown sugar with butter biscuit flavour. Available in sachets and individual pots, folk can have a tasty and nutritious breakfast at home, or enjoy ‘al-desko’, in just two minutes. Made with 100% whole grain oats for natural energy release, the new Caramelised Biscuit porridge is widely available at major supermarkets at around £3.50 for ten sachets and £1.30 for an individual pot.
Apparently, 98% of us admit to throwing away bagged salads when they go all slimy… I know I often have to. Well, here’s a clever new range of bagged salads available in Tesco stores from Unbeleafable. It’s the first range of ready-to-eat salads grown by a vertical farm in the UK and it stays fresher for longer than other bagged salads. Crops are grown without pesticides, aren’t washed in chlorine and the process uses 94% less water than conventional bagged salad production methods. The range comprises Crisp green leaves (mild salad containing a mix of green baby lettuce and frilly green baby lettuce); mixed baby leaves (mild salad containing a mix of green baby lettuce and red baby lettuce) and rocket & baby Leaves (stronger flavour, a mix of green baby lettuce, red baby lettuce and rocket). Around £1.50 for a 90g bag.
Fancy a new type of cocktail? Sake Sling uses the flavour of iconic Japanese sake, with natural flavourings including Yuzu & Melon and Mandarin & Cherry. They’re inspired by the classic, historic Singapore Sling cocktail, created at Raffles Hotel, Singapore in 1915. If unfamiliar with sake, Sake Sling provides a good entry point to its unique flavour, while existing fans can discover this rice wine reinvented in contemporary cocktails. It’s made with craft sake from the celebrated Daimon brewery in Japan, with no artificial flavours or sweeteners. Drink as a cocktail or as a natural pairing for Asian dishes. These award-winning pre-mixed canned cocktails are 5.5%abv and available from Amazon at £14 for a pack of 4 x 250ml cans.
Love white wine? Try this new, refreshing yet intense, 2022 Graffigna Pinot Grigio from Argentina – it’s the perfect white wine for late summer. It’s floral and crisp and made from the Pinot Grigio grape. It’s also great value, normally priced at just £9 per bottle from Sainsbury’s. Made from grapes grown in multi-altitude vineyards located in San Juan and Mendoza, Argentina, these regions have a wide thermal amplitude (up to 20°C) boasting more than 300 days of sun per year allowing them to produce top-quality grapes. The Graffigna Pinot Grigio has deep aromas, flavours and great concentration. What’s more, it’s worth stocking up, as 2022 Graffigna Pinot Grigio is on offer at Sainsbury’s at £7.50 per bottle, on promotion until 26 September 2023.
One of my favourite English sparkling wines – Langham – has just released its latest cuvée, Langham’s Culver Classic Cuvée NV and it’s wonderful. Culver is a pinot-dominant Classic Cuvée, more rich and broad in character than Corallian, Langham’s chardonnay-dominant counterpart. This difference is highlighted in the warm 2020 vintage base wines, with bright red cherry, cranberry and apple blossom on the nose, and black pepper and cola on the palate. Grapes are harvested into small crates, and then gently pressed in a three-tonne pneumatic press. The press fractions are separated and then allowed to settle overnight, before racking into used oak barrels and stainless steel tanks where spontaneous, wild yeast fermentation commences. Malolactic fermentation follows, during an eight to nine-month-long elevage. The base wines are tasted and blended in the summer, then bottled. Culver has a minimum of 15 months of ageing on lees and three months of ageing under cork after disgorgement. Langham’s Culver Classic Cuvée NV is now available at £30.95 per bottle from www.langhamwine.co.uk and Lea & Sandeman.
Rum seems destined to be ‘the’ drink this winter, and Vapoura, a new English rum, has just launched in the UK. Apparently, the overall rum market is up by a staggering 83.5% so far this year. Vapoura’s first expression, Spiced, is very elegant indeed. It’s crafted through ground-breaking distillation techniques in the heart of England. Released during the height of the rum renaissance, this ‘traditionally untraditional’ rum showcases the versatility of the sugar-cane spirit. Vapoura takes its name from the Vapourer moth, ‘an ode to beauty emerging from darkness.’ It’s a complex drink, with colliding flavours and spices – citrus notes of blood orange, complemented with fresh turmeric and cracked black cardamom. It’s lovely sipped neat, but it is also a fabulous cocktail ingredient. Vapoura Spiced Rum (70cl), 42% is available now from vapourarum.com at £50 for a 70cl bottle.
And finally, one of the best popcorn companies – Joe & Seph’s – has launched a new cake lover’s collection, featuring not one, but four limited-edition popcorn flavours inspired by our favourite bakes. There’s Chocolate Fudge Cake – air-popped popcorn coated in chocolate caramel, with cream cheese and vanilla; Millionaire’s Shortbread – air-popped popcorn coated in smooth caramel, with shortbread and dark chocolate; Peanut Butter Blondie – air-popped popcorn coating in our white chocolate caramel sauce, with crunchy peanut butter (1-star Great taste award 2022) and Birthday Cake – air-popped popcorn coated in smooth caramel, with raspberry and cream cheese frosting. They are rather scrumptious! These flavours are now available at £4 a pack, directly from Joe & Seph’s, here