Across Israel, Meir Panim responds to the growing needs of the country’s 1.75 million impoverished residents through various food and social service programs.
Fish: Our old friends at Dagim are showcasing a new line called Sea Treats. It includes breaded flounder and pollock – found in the freezer section and available for both retail and wholesale. They also have a line called Vegi Chef which features frozen breaded eggplant slices and sticks and breaded zucchini.
At Shindler’s Fish, they are raving about a new product called Gourmet Fish Medallions – slices of fresh sole fillets wrapped around chunks of salmon. While they can be prepared either stir-fried or baked – the baked ones look very elegant on the plate. They should be in stores in about six weeks. Echo Falls displayed the latest addition to their smoked salmon line, wild smoked salmon pinwheels with cream cheese, chives and dill. We also had a chance to stop by A&B and sample some of their delicious gefilte fish. I must admit that since we started South Beach, their low carb, splenda loaf has become a staple in our home.
From France: At Rue Lafayette, Inc. we were treated to some of the most amazing chocolate. Made by Payard, these truffles come in elegant boxes perfect for gift giving. We also tried La Courtisane gourmet teas, adorably elegant pastry shells in the shape of small spoons, banana boats and shells and a wonderful black truffle olive oil, which won a 2004 best new product award.
Meat: Our old friends at Meal Mart will be releasing new kid-friendly products over the next few months – breaded chicken nuggets shaped like alef, bais, gimmel, hearts, and stars. Chefs to Go has a great line of microwaveable meals including meatballs and spaghetti, beef lasagna and beef bourguignon. At Wise Kosher Organic we saw packages of their all-new ground chicken legs. And at Of Tov - a new line of meats displayed yummy looking turkey breast – honey glazed and oven roasted
Misc: Wrapole’s challah aloha wrap is now available in a 6-½ inch retail size. Durkee Spices has a new line to really perk up your cooking – ancho-citrus, Cajun and garlic and herb were amongst some of the new flavors. Healthy Delights has some new dishes to add to your menu – low carb souffl?s and delicious side dishes like pasta portabella and kasha varnishkes – just heat and serve.
At the Tara booth we eyed a new line of cream cheese – tomato and spice and black pepper. They also showcased a new yellow cheese, in light - 9% fat – and regular. Smackin’ Good light whipped topping is in spray cans. For a great dessert – two tubs of light whipped topping and a package of vanilla pudding mix. Our visit to Ratner’s was a delicious introduction to a whole line of pre-baked goodies, cholov Yisrael cheese blintzes in vanilla and orange, parve chocolate blintzes, potato pirogen and matzo balls. All are pre-baked – just heat in the microwave and enjoy. And at Fred’s Organic Foods we sampled some of the delicious and healthy 18 organic soup flavors.
Pizza: Macabee Foods displayed their new line of low carb pizza bagels and personal pizzas. And EJ’s Chicago style deep-dish pizza is now available in New York in both personal and family size. Try the cheese and spinach – you’ll love it.
Sauces and Condiments: Rosie’s from London featured a wonderful array of pastes – amongst the ones we sampled were red pesto and artichoke. They are made with all natural ingredients, no added sugar and tons of flavor. Our friends at Sabra are introducing garden fresh frozen herbs – chopped cilantro, basil, dill, parsley and garlic all in individual cubes and all in your grocer’s freezer. Fresh Garden has an all-new avocado dip that tastes great. At Victoria we took a look at stuffed olives – the biggest hits are the olives stuffed with either garlic or almonds. Heavenly Foods featured Divine Dressings that are truly delicious.
We sampled all three: ruby raspberry, citrus sweet and sour, and lemon lime Dijon. Made with canola oil and only 90 calories a serving, they are a must for a well-stocked pantry closet. Cain’s displayed beautiful bottles of salad dressings in wonderful flavors – unfortunately right now they are only available for food service. Wilma Lusard’s has a marinara sauce for kids. It is made from sweeter tomatoes then the regular sauce.
A new line of cooled salads and spreads from Pereg Gourmet includes sun dried tomatoes, crushed fresh garlic, s’chug and spicy pickled lemons. And finally, the booth with the biggest crowds was Chip ‘n Dip – deep fried French fries and an incredible dips – I had my fries with the garlic and herb dip – yum. The dips are also available in hot chili, mushroom, spicy ketchup and more.
Snacks and Chips: In time for Chanukah, Maccabeans is once again presenting their legendary jellybeans – 10 different flavors in two different eye-catching packages. Does the thought of truffle pretzels tempt you? The guys at The Sweet Tooth have a line of pretzels so great they are currently patent-pending. Inside each of their truffle pretzels are fillings of truffle ganache. They also have a line of Ganache Grahams that look so great; you won’t be sure you should eat them or display them in a case.
New on the market are A & J’s Lasagna Chips - all natural snacks that resemble small lasagna noodles. Made from semolina flour, vegetable oil and spices, they are available in three flavors: spicy BBQ, tomato basil and original. With their great taste they will make a great addition to the healthy snack closet.
Speaking of healthy snacks, you can’t go wrong with Jennies Macaroons. Free of soy, wheat, gluten and transfat, these little delicacies are filled with taste. Available in carob, chocolate and coconut, they have zero grams of net carbs and are delicious.
In time for Purim, Oppenheimer’s Chocolate will have yummy candies under the Arcor label. They are caramel butter n’ cream, chocolate butter toffee and butter toffee. Available now are their Bon o bons in chocolate, vanilla and peanut butter. Last are the Kedem Kids Telma breakfast bars. I hate to call them snacks, because lots of kids eat them for breakfast, but they are great any time of day. Filled with calcium and more than 10 minerals, they come in four different flavors. In our home, the chocolate is the all-time favorite.
Of special interest: Ruthie & Gussie’s of the famous potato latke batter have three new additions to their line – potato kugel batter, sweet potato latkes batter and matzo ball batter. Special for Chanukah is their Latke Gram, which includes a latke batter, applesauce and sour cream. You can place an order at www.ruthieandgussies.com
About the Author: Magazine Editor, The Jewish Press
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