Our journey through the culinary delights of kosher brings us to R.A.B. Food and their amazing line-up of companies and products. Under the Manischewitz label we discovered Chocolate Covered Tam Tam crackers in three flavors: milk chocolate, dark chocolate and vanilla fudge. Also available this month is the only dairy-free frosting to match their parve cake mixes, in both vanilla and chocolate. For those looking to eat healthier there are whole grain matzo farfel and matzo meal – great source of fiber – available in a re-sealable canister and useable on Pesach.
Guiltless Gourmet has yummy looking (and tasting) single-serve dessert bowls. These dishes are easy to prepare – add minimal amount of water and place in the microwave for less then a minute – the result, Black Velvet Cake with Caramel Sauce or Hot Chocolate Brownie with Fudge Sauce or Bananas Foster Cake with Caramel Sauce. They have 200 calories and not more than three grams of fat. The company also has a line of all natural sandwich wraps – California Veggie, Four Bean Chili, etc. – which can be found in your grocer’s freezer.
I also had the chance to spend a few minutes with the Manischewitz spokesperson, Susie Fishbein. Her relationship with Manischewitz is a simple one – she believes they have great products and wants people to know about them. Her new cookbook, Kosher by Design – Short on Time, mentions a number of Manischewitz products that she feels are superb and better then the competitors’ brand. We actually made one of her recipes the other day – Falafel Crusted Chicken. It was delicious and the only hard part was finding the Manischewitz Falafel Mix, which unfortunately can’t be found in all supermarkets yet.
At Empire Kosher Poultry the buzz was about Chicken Kabobs in both plain and sauced which are available for food service and new packaging. As Elie Rosenfeld, chief operating officer at Joseph Jacobs Advertising, pointed out, Empire’s main goal is customer satisfaction. With all that has been happening in the kashrus industry and the doubts that have been raised, Empire wants to assure its consumers that when they buy an Empire chicken, that’s what they are getting. So, beginning January 2007, chickens will now come in special retail-portion bags that have been sealed onsite at the plant. There will also be a holographic image with security measures to further protect customers. What this means for the consumer is that Empire chickens will no longer be repackaged at the butcher/grocery. Weight, pack sizes and products will not be affected – the only thing that changes is the packaging. Hopefully other companies will soon follow suit and give consumers the assurances they need.
In the “what took so long for someone to think of that” category we have S. Bertram Inc. and their wonderful food service line. Their latest product is a convenient sealed kiddush cup. Filled with six ounces of 100 percent grape juice, these cups are ideal for kiddush, havadala and the arba kosos (four cups of wine for Pesach). No more easy-to-break glass bottles, just foil-sealed plastic cups that are perfect for hospitals, nursing homes and vacations.
Another fabulous product is from Hi Caf?, distributed by Oxygen Imports – 100 percent freeze dried coffee in a canister with a patented seal under the lid to lock in freshness. The seal is made to dispense different amounts, one teaspoon, two teaspoons or a larger amount depending on whether you are making a cup or a pot. The product will be available in the States very soon.
Coming next week: A wrap up of companies and products.