The wonderful folks at the Food Talk Show ran a competition to find a food product that uses unusual ingredients to achieve a wonderful food profile. Kinomi was one of the lucky winners with our Bari Bari Barus. I even got a lovely award to prove it. It's our first award to we are thrilled to bits. And look how pretty it is :)
Food Talk Radio invited me down to their studio, just down the road from Kinomi HQ to have a chat about all things nuts.
The lovely hosts Sue and Guy sampled the nuts on air and had many nice things to say about them. Plus, I had the pleasure of meeting Tom Spillane of Andean Sol.
Have a listen for yourself.
Kinomi nuts get their flavour from subtle blends of spices and herbs. As a cook, I love taking an experimental approach in the kitchen - smelling and tasting spices, dreaming up ways I can use them to enhance the natural flavours of ingredients. It’s an education, and I’m loving every moment of it.
As you read through this list, you’ll see that spices can very often take the place of salt, bringing out complex flavours while remaining healthy and nutritious.
Pika Pika Pecans – Palmyra Flower Sugar, Kaffir Lime & Kampot White Pepper
Palmyra Flower Sugar
Made from the juice of wild flowers from the Palmyra tree, this unrefined sugar has an amazing deep caramel flavour all its own. It also has a low glycaemic index of 40 and is packed with B vitamins. With such a wonderful flavour, you need only half as much as regular white sugar.
Very aromatic and fresh with floral notes, it adds a southeast Asian feel to the pecans. Depending on cuisine, you can use it in everything from soup to meat and as an essential ingredient in many Thai curries. Just don’t expect it to taste like lime zest!
Kampot White Pepper
Exclusively from Cambodia, it is far from the cracked black pepper you may be used to. With a lovely aroma, soft heat and complex flavours, the pepper I use is grown sustainably by Cambodian farmers in a cooperative. I urge you all to try experiment with it, but don’t overdo it! You don’t need very much as it has a unique flavour all its own.
- Waku Waku Cashews – Norwegian Arctic Seaweed & Iranian Sumac
Japanese cooks use seaweed in all kinds of ingenious ways, so I couldn’t resist using this on my cashews. Seaweed is a wonderful flavour enhancer since it adds a savoury tone with depth without using salt. It’s great sprinkled on soups and stir fries where it will add another layer of flavour.
This particular variety of seaweed is harvested sustainably off the coast of Norway by a company that’s been in business for over 75 years.
An essential in Iranian and Lebanese cooking, sumac is the fruit of a bushy shrub. It is used as an acidulant and brings out the flavours of food much like salt. Interestingly, it tastes very similar to yukari, a Japanese topping made from purple perilla leaves.
- Pori Pori Almonds – Smoked Red Jalapeno & Indian Amchur
Smoked Red Jalapeno
Everything is better smoked, right? The smoked chilli I use comes from a company that specialises in smoking anything and everything, so you know it’s going to be good. The smoke flavour adds a savoury note and the chilli provides a gentle kick.
A staple Indian powder made from the evergreen mango, used as a tenderiser for meat and fish due to its high acidity content. One teaspoon of amchur has the equivalent acidity of 3 tablespoons of lemon juice. It is also used in Northern India to add a tropical fruit tang to vegetables from stews to stir fries.
Part 1 - the Signature Soy Glaze
The flavour anchor for Kinomi is my signature soy glaze comprised of gluten free soy sauce, kombu and sake. These are all staples of any Japanese kitchen and will add umami to your everyday dishes.
Soy sauce is a fermented soy bean product traditionally made with soy beans, water, wheat and salt. It’s been used in East Asian cooking for almost two thousand years. I use a gluten-free version, substituting wheat for spirit vinegar. The fermentation process gives it a rich, salty flavour, without actually adding much salt.
We eat many different kinds of seaweed in Japan, all of which have individual flavours and uses. Kombu is the strongest seaweed, so in Japanese cooking, we use it primarily for stock and enriching other flavours. Fresh kombu is harvested off the coast of Hokkaido, then laid out on the beach to dry. The wonderful flavours of the ocean are condensed through the drying process, released only when they hit liquid.
Sake is ubiquitous in Japanese cooking, and easily found throughout the UK. It adds a real depth of flavour, increases the umami flavour and also lessens the smells of fish and meat, resulting in a cleaner taste when cooked. Just a little splash really lifts the flavours - try it in your home cooking.
My first interview happened at "Springboard for Entrepreneurs" organised by Zenith International.
I took part in a "Springboard for Entrepreneurs event organised by Zenith International on 20 September. I had the chance to show my products to an audience of industry members and new startups as well as do a mini presentation. While there, I was interviewed by Claire Phoenix from Food and Bev Magazine. Here's what I said.
On the 21st of July, Kinomi was officially relaunched. Many things happened after that but that is the day I decided to mark as the official day.
To mark the occasion, I had a dinner party for some food founders and we enjoyed an evening of good food, good company and much laughter. Lewis Parsons very kindly made the evening into a fabulous video.
It's a fun video and Lewis captured the spirit of the evening perfectly. I hope it will just be the beginning of many more like it to commemorate various milestones in the Kinomi journey.