Posts Tagged ‘Ginger’

gingerbreadspice

Photo from Knoshy.
Click on the pic to go there.

Product Information:

This organic, fair trade chocolate is crafted by Theo Chocolate in Seattle, Washington. Gingerbread spices are mixed with creamy milk chocolate that’s sweet, spicy and warming! Makes a perfect fireside treat to enjoy with a mug of hot cocoa. Limited seasonal release.

I received this chocolate bar in my December box from Knoshy!

Tea Suggestion:

Because I’m loving the notes of spice in this chocolate bar, especially the nutmeg, I decided to brew a cup of this Nutmeg Cream Tea from Butiki Teas!  I love the way the creamy notes of the tea marry with the creamy taste of the chocolate on my palate, and the the spice notes of the tea were in perfect harmony with the zesty spices of the confection.  Delicious!

What I Think:

Chocolate!

This is the first of two chocolate bars that I received in December’s box from Knoshy.  And I’m loving it.

There is a good amount of spice to this candy bar.  It’s a really delightful balance between rich, creamy milk chocolate and warm spices, and I like that they aren’t competing with one another.

When I shop for chocolate, I generally select a darker chocolate, but, I really like milk chocolate too, and I think that milk chocolate is the right choice for these particular flavors because it makes it taste almost like a chocolate “chai” but without the tea.  (Don’t worry, that can be easily remedied by simply enjoying the chocolate bar alongside a cup of hot tea!)

In fact, the spices here are very chai-like.  It’s got ginger, cinnamon, cardamom, cloves and nutmeg, as well as vanilla.  Most of these (and often all of these) are found in a masala chai.

My Final Thoughts:

I love this chocolate bar.  I am so glad that Knoshy included it in this month’s box.  It is rich, spicy, and chocolate-y … and absolutely delicious.

These unique puffs are described as simply

A fall favorite

240Sweet Marshmallows are available on the 240Sweet website.

Tea Suggestion:

When they’re not serving as a fluffy, delicious cap to my hot cocoa, I usually prefer to eat marshmallows with a cup of hot tea.  However, the heat from the ginger on these gives me cause to want something that is easy to “chug” … lest I need to cool the palate immediately.  So I chose a white tea because even when served hot, I prepare it at a cooler temperature than I do other tea types, and white tea tends to offer the body and palate cooling properties.  I chose this amazing Organic White Tea from Steenbergs Organics.  The sweet, crisp flavor of the tea offered lovely refreshment from these deliciously sweet yet spicy puffs.

What I Think:

I think I may have mentioned before that 240Sweet makes my favorite marshmallows.  And it’s not just because the marshmallows are huge and fluffy and perfectly sweet.  It’s not just because 240Sweet has managed to create works of art with their marshmallows.  Sure, these reasons factor in to why I love these marshmallows so much, but there’s something more to it too.

It’s their gutsy approach to marshmallows.  They’re not afraid to get ballsy with their marshmallows and put flavors in them.  They’re not content with just letting a marshmallow be a simple little puff of sugary sweet goodness.  I mean, seriously, who ELSE would think to put SWEET POTATO flavor in a marshmallow, encrust it with crunchy, candied GINGER and turn those simple little puffs (or in this case … HUGE puffs) into spicy, savory, sweet bits of culinary joy?

Oh.  My.  Goodness!  These are amazing.  So yummy!

These puffs evoke thoughts of Thanksgiving dinner when I was a child (which is why I chose to schedule this review for Thanksgiving) … My stepmother would always make sweet potato casserole.  And this puff is very much like that sweet potato casserole, only BETTER because first of all, it’s a confection and so it’s OK that this is sweet.  (Now that I’m grown I’m a little disappointed that the delicious flavor of the sweet potato was masked by all that sugar and stale, commercially manufactured marshmallow)  Second … the ginger on this gives it a fiery heat that my stepmother could never duplicate (she had no clue when it came to spices).

The sweet potato flavor is IN the marshmallow itself.  However, if you want to taste the sweet potato flavor, you need to be sure that you bite into a bit of the marshmallow that is not studded with the crystallized ginger.  Otherwise, what you’ll taste is mostly spicy-hot ginger.  The sweet potato flavor is overwhelmed by the ginger when you bite into the ginger … but when you take a bite into just the marshmallow, you can taste the creamy marshmallow and the sweet, savory taste of the sweet potato.   I like to alternate bites, eating some of the puff without the ginger.  Its sweet and savory, the sweet potato adds such an interesting flavor to the marshmallow.   Then I like taking a bite with the ginger and POW!  It’s like a spicy kick in the mouth!

My Final Thoughts:

I wanted to try these because they sounded so unique (come on… sweet potato flavor in a marshmallow?  Aren’t you at least a little bit intrigued?) and I’m really glad I did.  I love the contrast of flavors and textures that these puffs provide.  A lovely autumnal treat!

Picture from Knoshbox. Click on the pic to go there.

Product Description:

These bars are wheat-free, all-natural and made with local apples from Bishops Orchard in Guilford, Connecticut. The flavors and aromas of the bars will bring back memories of apple picking in the orchard and drinking warm cinnamon apple cider on a cool autumn night.

They’re made with: organic rolled oats, Connecticut wildflower honey, organic oat bran, organic sunflower seeds, almonds, pecans, golden raisins, cranberries, canola oil, natural vanilla, organic lemon juice, cinnamon, nutmeg, malt syrup, cardamom, sea salt and ginger.

I received this bar in my October Knoshbox, and they can be purchased on the Knoshbox website for a limited time.

Tea Suggestion:

This granola bar has a lot of flavor on its own, so I didn’t want to choose something that might have a competitive flavor profile.  I chose this High Country black tea blend from Trail Lodge Tea, and it was an ideal choice.  The richness of the tea complimented the sweet, toasty flavors of the granola bar, and the earthy tones of the bar highlighted the tea’s earthier qualities.

What I Think:

When it come to granola bars, I typically prefer the softer variety over the crunchy.  This granola bar seems to fall somewhere in between the two … it’s not as hard as the commercially produced granola bars that you’ll readily find in the grocery stores, it isn’t pressed the way those bars seem to be.  You know what I’m talking about right?  It seems like the ingredients for those granola bars are compacted into a solid, brick-like form that is almost as hard as a brick.   That’s not the case with these bars, You can see all the ingredients, and they don’t appear to be quite as SMOOSHED together as the brick granola bars, but these DO have a certain toothy crunch to them that makes them similar to the crunchy granola bars.

But, what makes them crunchy are the chunks of nuts (I can taste the almonds and especially the pecans!  YUM!) and the toasted oats and sunflower seeds.  The texture is brought on naturally, not by over-processing.

My Final Thoughts:

I love that I can identify each ingredient that is listed in the above list.  I can taste the honey, and the cranberries and each of the spices too!  It’s really a warm and delicious tasting bar – definitely very “Harvest-y” … a perfect granola bar for this time of year (and for the Autumn Harvest themed Knoshbox!)  While I do generally prefer my granola bars to be slightly softer, I like that the crunchiness of this bar comes from the toasted textures of the ingredients.

Overall, this is an enjoyable, hunger-satiating granola bar … and one that I enjoyed enough that I might purchase it again.

About Bernod Group:

After a combined 30 years of natural retail and restaurant food experience,
what drives us?

Nothing less than a passion for novelty, and a keen taste for quality.
Our key aim is to research and develop food products and flavor profiles that set new standards for innovation.

Learn more about Bernod Group on their website.

Tea Suggestion:

What a lovely alternative to the traditional tea-time treat this Ginger Caramel Gourmet Popcorn made.  I enjoyed this popcorn with some Fengqing Dragon Black Pearl tea from Teavivre.  The richness of the tea brought out the ginger flavor just a little more, and the caramel notes of the popcorn seemed to bring out more of the sweetness of the tea.

What I Think:

As I mentioned before, after my review of the Organic Cherry Vanilla Cotton Candy from Bernod’s SpinCity, Bernod Group sent me a few of their popcorn selections to try.  This is one of those popcorns, and it is the last popcorn from Bernod’s I have left.  How I managed to keep it this long is surprising to me, I had to keep it well out of sight to keep it out of mind.

I knew I’d love this Ginger Caramel Popcorn … I love caramel corn, and I love ginger, and I figured the addition of ginger to the caramel would amp up the spice level a bit.  And I LOVE the combination of spicy and sweet!

The first couple of kernels that I popped in my mouth tasted very much like the original Caramel Popcorn from Bernod’s.  Sweet and crunchy with just enough chewiness from the caramel to give it an interesting contrast in texture.  The buttery flavor of the caramel.  But … I didn’t taste much from the ginger.  Then, after the third or fourth bite, I noticed a heat starting to develop.  Yeah, that’s the stuff!

It never becomes overwhelmingly spicy, and I don’t think I’d want it to.  I enjoy the level of ginger here.  It adds just enough peppery spice to it to offer contrast and to keep the flavor interesting enough to keep wanting to have another bite … which becomes sad when you reach the bottom of the bag!

My Final Thoughts:

I absolutely loved this Ginger Caramel Popcorn from Bernod’s… it just might be my favorite yet.  When I spoke to Bernod’s about the availability of this product, I was told that it can be found at HomeGoods – and I did find the original Caramel Popcorn at my local HomeGoods.  But I didn’t see any of the other popcorn flavors from Bernod’s there.  I don’t know if that is because they just didn’t have it in stock at the time or if they do not stock any other varieties other than the original Caramel…. if you find this product any where else, be sure to let me know!

Product Description:

Our most unusual ginger ale, perfumed with jasmine flowers and earthy with tannins, we infuse this with a fine, whole leaf green jasmine tea from Taiwan.  Unique among soft drinks, this seems to improve with age and has our most passionate followers.

Learn more about Bruce Cost’s Fresh Ginger Ale on the website.

What I Think:

Wowie!  Let me tell you:  you’ve never had ginger ale until you’ve had some of this unfiltered ginger ale made from fresh ginger (unless you happen to make some yourself).  It’s a completely different experience from any ginger ale I have tasted in the past.

While perusing the soft drink section of the local New Seasons market – searching actually for a bottle of the Chai Cola that I fell in love with a couple of months ago – I came across this soft drink.  What caught my attention initially was that it was a “real” ginger ale and not one of those bland soft drinks you can find in any grocery store.

Then I noticed that there are actual bits of ginger (this is an unfiltered ginger ale!) that had settled at the bottom.  A little discomforting at first, but then I read the fine print at the bottom of the label that read:  “separation is natural.  Shake gently.”  Finally, I noticed the words “Jasmine Tea” on the neck label and I was sold.  I HAD to try this.  So I put the Chai Cola away (yes, I love it, but I don’t like to drink a lot of soda, especially when I’ve so much tea at home waiting for me to taste it) and decided to purchase this instead.

Oh. My. Gawd!  This is amazingly good.  It’s zingy, zippy, zesty and all the other vibrant words that you can think of to describe a delightfully spicy, peppery drink.  It isn’t as sweet as other soft drinks including other ginger ales that I’ve consumed.  Perhaps this is because of the strength of the ginger which may offset the sweetness.  Either way, I appreciate that this isn’t overly sweet.

I wish I could taste more of the jasmine green tea in this, and I guess if I were to change anything at all about this soft drink, that would be it.  I was hoping for a bit more of a jasmine tea flavor, but, even so, this is still knocking my socks off.

My Final Thoughts:

Well, as I just said, I would like there to be more jasmine green tea taste to this, I think that the power of the ginger just overwhelms the delicate flavor of jasmine green tea.  Perhaps the next time I get this, I’ll hang on to it for a few weeks before consuming it to see if the jasmine green tea comes to life.  Either way, I really like what I’ve tasted.  If you like ginger ale, you’ve gotta try this stuff!

Learn more about 479° Popcorn here.

Product Description:

Ginger comes from the edible bulb of a perennial plant, and is frequently found in Asian cuisine. We infuse golden, buttery caramel with organic ginger to create a pleasantly zesty coating for crisp, fluffy popcorn. Finished with a generous sprinkle of toasted sesame seeds, this unique snack displays tingly heat, gentle sweetness and a nutty finish. San Francisco’s Chinatown was our inspiration for this exuberant combination of flavors, and we think it tastes even better with a Bruce Lee movie playing on the flat screen.

What I Think:

This has to be the tastiest caramel popcorn I’ve ever tasted.  I love the contrast between the sweet caramel and the peppery zing of the ginger.  The hint of nutty flavor from the sesame seeds is just barely apparent, but it’s enough to keep the taste buds excited for more.

The popcorn is light and fluffy, and now that I am near the bottom of the pouch that was included with my Stocking Stuffers tasting box from Foodzie, I can also say that I found NO un-popped kernels and I’m not really experiencing much of a hull issue either.

The caramel is done right.  Each kernel of popcorn is covered with no bare spots.  It has a nice sweetness, it doesn’t taste burnt, and it has a nice crispness to it, without coming across as too sticky, buttery or messy on the fingers or the teeth.  Adding to the crunchy texture are the black sesame seeds, which add a light, toasty nut taste.  Every kernel of popcorn seems to have at least one seed on them, so there is a good amount of sesame seeds here, but again, it’s just the right amount … not too much, or too little.  Then there is the ginger.  I love the kick that the ginger adds to this popcorn, and gives it just the right balance between sweet and spicy.

As for a tea pairing … this popcorn has enough flavor going on for it that I’d recommend just a glass of iced tea for palate refreshment!  My favorite iced tea:  Rainbow Sherbet from 52Teas.  Here, the flavors are anything but “simple” but it sure is refreshing with a pouch of this popcorn!

My Final Thoughts:

I loved this.  My only regret that there was just one pouch of it in my box, and now that pouch is empty.  I know that my local market carries this brand, although I don’t know if they happen to carry this particular flavor.  I hope so and I will check for it the next time I’m shopping.  I must have more!

Where to Buy:  Botanical Bakery on Foodzie

Price:  $5.99 for 3.5 ounce package

Product Description:

Light the Fire Within. Life should be a bit more digestible. The delectable shortbread indulgence helps make it so. In Ginger Squared, enjoy the warm sweet aroma as it is complemented by the bright spicy gentle heat of crystallized ginger.

What I Think:

What I think is that these shorties are insanely addictive!

It takes a couple of these buttery rich, sweet shortbread bites before I really taste the heat from the ginger, but after those few, it becomes very gingery.  Never really HOT but delightfully warm.  The flavor of the ginger helps cut through some of the sweetness of the shortbread, creating a very pleasing sweet-savory experience for the palate.

But the best part?  With each bite, I get a bit of crystallized ginger!  That chewy texture in contrast to the melt-in-my-mouth, tender/flaky texture of the shortbread is in itself addictive.

The Botanical Bakery suggests pairing this with an Oolong tea, and I did just that!  I enjoyed this Strong Fire Oolong from The Tao of Tea.   Another great pairing would be a Yunnan like this Yunnan Gold from TeaVert, as the ginger in these cookies would probably bring out some of the peppery qualities of the Yunnan.  These delightful shorties helped to make my tea time even more special!

My Final Thoughts:

Before I opened this package, I thought that no flavor could top the delicious fennel pollen shortbread, but now, as I sit here, sad that this package is now empty… I realize that as much as I love the fennel pollen shorties, I love these even more!  YUM!