Monday, 21 February 2011

Take the Orient Express

Natures Basket in association with Maido India launched a two month long celebration of Japanese products on the 29th of January, 2011 to showcase a whole new range of premium Japanese products through its select stores.  This “Premium Japan Shop” inside Natures Basket, Warden Road is the centre of much envied attention boasting over 30 exciting new ingredients (many of which are 100% vegetarian). Taste some of these offerings at the customised kiosk manned by a specialist. Head to Natures Basket and give your palate an exotic oriental treat.

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Here are some of our favourites!

Aji Nori: Thin, crisp Japanese jack mackerel flavoured dried seaweed sheets that can be eaten as a snack with Asahi Beer or cut into strips to top noodles, mashed or baked potatoes and salads.

Ginger Lemon snack: A flavourful snack perked up with a hint of ginger and a dash of lemon to excite your taste buds and makes for an appetizing snack with drinks side dish.

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Tobanjan: This Japanese style chilli bean sauce is a more oomph filled alternative to Tabasco. The heat of the chillies is laced with the smokiness of fermented beans. Use it to spice up just about anything including Japanese stews, hotpots, soups. You can even stir it through noodles.

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Miso Dips: Try our new Miso dips with your dipables next time, not only are they spicy savoury and great as dips for breadsticks, crudit├ęs, to use as a spread in sandwiches and dress salads with but also extremely nutritious because they are made from soy based miso paste which is an excellent source of dietary fibre and protein as well as a good source of minerals.

[caption id="attachment_75" align="aligncenter" width="253" caption="Non-Vegetarian Instant Miso Soup"][/caption]

Miso Soup: Stir up a bowl of hot miso soup anytime with our new single serve packs! This traditional Japanese soup made from dashi, a stock of fried fish flakes, seaweed and softened miso or fermented soy bean paste is high on flavour and health. Have it as is or titivate it by adding vegetables such as mushrooms, carrots, potatoes, tofu or green onion. Instant miso soup is excellent to carry to work or while travelling for a high-protein, warming filler on the go. Vegetarians try our excellent vegetarian version!


Tonkatsu sauce: Similar to Western Worcestershire but with a different consistency and flavour, Tonkatsu sauce comprises apple, tomato and spices amongst other things. Also known as 'East-West Sauce,' this sauce with its subtly sweet caramel tones is most often served with Japanese pork cutlets but can also  double up as a steak or BBQ sauce for chicken, shrimp, fish and even mushrooms and potatoes. Why not try some Japanese style barbequed baby corn and mushrooms tonight?

Teriyaki Sauce: A sweet, savoury sauce made by combining sake or mirin (Japanese rice wines) with soy sauce, Teriyaki is used as a marinade in the Teriyaki style of cooking where the food is grilled and broiled. Use it as a dip, dressing or spread.

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Macadamia Nuts: Nature's vitamin pill, the macadamia kernel contains Vitamins A, B1, B2, Niacin and essential elements such as Calcium, Iron, Phosphorous, Magnesium and Potassium. Their rich, sweet, delicate, buttery flavour can be enjoyed by themselves or in desserts and savour dishes.

Matcha syrup: Try this beautiful vibrant green tea syrup for a variety of Asian style puddings and desserts. Or drizzle over, anything from fresh fruit or vanilla ice cream to cheesecake and elaborate desserts for an exciting twist.

Furikake: This assertive dry Japanese condiment packs punchy flavours. Use it to season rice like the Japanese do or add zing to your regular meals on lazy evenings. Check our shelves for a range of furikake flavours.

Kinkon Sake: Sake is a rice based alcoholic beverage or popularly known as the Japanese rice wine, and happens to be Japan’s national drink.  It may be served hot, warm or cold depending on the weather and preference. Convenient 300 ml bottles are great to wash down sashimi, tempura, cheese or any miso or soy based dish.

Fruit Sake: The fruit in the sake lends its flavour and colour to the clear wine, naturally enhancing sake's fruity and floral qualities. Use it to make interesting aperitifs at home or as a precursor to Japanese meals.

Yuzu Kasho: A distinctive, bitterly pungent, addictive condiment made from the zest of yuzu (an extremely tart citrus fruit indiginour to Japan) chili peppers and salt. Use this potent condiment as seasoning in small amounts to flavour salads, soups or noodles for a distinctive new note to everyday meals.

Sakura Chocolate: Sakura or cherry blossom chocolate has an intense aroma and taste of Sakura. It will certainly make a pretty looking gift that will inspire pleasure!

Chestnut candies: These traditional candies make a perfect treat after a meal of sushi. These candies are part of the authentic Japanese dessert recipes from the late 1800s and early 1900s. Their sweetness pairs well with the contrasting flavour of Japanese green tea.

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