Soom Premium Tahini
Many supermarket tahinis are over-roasted, which gives them an unpleasant, bitter flavor. They are also too thick and hard to stir into a creamy blend. Soom's tahini has a full, nutty flavor as well as a pourable and well-balanced texture, made from single-origin white sesame seeds from northwestern Ethiopia that have an ideal oil-to-protein ratio.
Milk Street Mexican Mocha Coffee Sugar
In our custom Mocha Mexican Coffee Sugar, earthy, aromatic cinnamon defines the chocolate’s flavor, coaxing out its fruitiness and tempering the bitterness without excessive sweetness. We use chipotle chili powder for its smoky depth, which pairs well with the spicy cinnamon and adds a subtle touch of heat.
Casablanca Market Preserved Lemons from Morocco
Casablanca Market's preserved lemons have a bright, balanced flavor and they aren't overly salty or bitter like some brands. We like that they add a bold, piquant kick to dishes without being too sour, and their tender texture is perfect for chopping finely and incorporating into recipes.
Il Colle Del Gusto Sicilian Pistachio Spread
Made from Sicilian pistachios and extra-virgin olive oil, Pistacchiosa is a creamy, aromatic spread you will want to put on all your desserts and, yes, eat straight out of the jar.
Villa Jerada Harissa
Villa Jerada’s Harissa No. 1 is our favorite version of this North African red pepper paste for its bright, complex flavor. While many store-bought varieties have a one-dimensional spicy flavor, this harissa layers acidity and fruitiness with preserved lemons, a touch of vinegar and tomato paste for a lively, tangy condiment. Villa Jerada uses just enough high-quality Moroccan olive oil to make the harissa spreadable and smooth without diluting its flavor, as opposed to conventional brands that contain a high proportion of water and vegetable oil.
Yakami Orchard Yuzu Marmalade
Juicy, flavorful and wonderfully textured Yakami Orchards Yuzu Marmalade is made with fresh, local yuzu from a collective of family farms in Japan’s Miyazaki prefecture. Balanced out with honey and sugar, this yuzu marmalade is bright, tart and warmly sweet with every bite. Just by opening a jar of Yakami Orchards’ product, you’ll be able to smell the bright and subtly floral aroma of yuzu. We love the plentiful chunks of yuzu rind, which are thinly sliced and add texture without making the marmalade clumpy. The yuzu pieces contribute a pop of piney bitterness that is a pleasant counterbalance for the overall sweet spread.
Mymouné Pomegranate Molasses
I discovered this Pomegranate Molasses from Mymouné through a Cambridge restaurant called Moona; the Lebanese company makes all of its products by hand in small batches, and their pomegranate molasses is the sharpest and brightest I have ever tasted. The bottle will last a long time, and it is so much better than the sweeter, less balanced supermarket products. It's a a powerhouse ingredient used throughout the cooking of the Middle East and the Caucasus region that I guarantee you'll love. — Christopher Kimball
Pic's Crunchy Peanut Butter
Fans of chunky peanut butter will love this version from New Zealand. Whereas many chunky peanut butters are just smooth peanut butter with occasional nut pieces, the New Zealand brand has a full mouthfeel, with the right ratio of plentiful crunchy bits to smooth butter for a satisfying consistency with every bite. It also boasts a shelf stability up to 10 times greater than regular peanut butter. And the peanut butter itself is always made without any added sugar, oil or emulsifiers, so the peanut flavor comes through clearly in both sweet and savory recipes.
Pic's Smooth Peanut Butter
Pic’s Peanut Butter works equally well for classic peanut butter and jelly sandwiches as it does for baking and cooking. Choose between salted or unsalted—even the salted version has only half the salt of comparable brands. And while not impervious to separating, we find the peanut butter comes together quickly with just a stir or two, as opposed to the vigorous blending required with other versions. It also boasts a shelf stability up to 10 times greater than regular peanut butter. And the peanut butter itself is always made without any added sugar, oil or emulsifiers, so the peanut flavor comes through clearly in both sweet and savory recipes.
Yakami Orchard Ginger Marmalade
These well-rounded preserves from Japan have a fresh, bright character, with ginger's sharp bite balanced by the rich honey used to make them. The strips of fresh ginger in the marmalade are ribbon-thin and tender, adding bursts of piquant spice and texture without being overwhelming.
Soom Chocolate Sweet Tahini Halva Spread
You can think of this chocolate tahini spread as the bittersweet, dark-chocolate sister of Nutella. Similar to how adding espresso powder to brownies brings out the chocolate flavor, the nutty and pleasantly bitter notes of toasted sesame are a wonderful counterpoint to the chocolate in this spreadable halva. Soom's tahini is made from single-origin white sesame seeds from northwestern Ethiopia that have an ideal oil-to-protein ratio and result in a creamy, pourable texture.
Soom Silan Date Syrup
Soom imports our favorite tahini, and this silky-sweet date syrup has quickly become a kitchen staple sweetener. Also known as date honey, Soom’s Silan is a thick, glossy syrup prepared from steamed and pureed dates. It’s earthy and rich, with a rounded flavor and dried-fruit finish. Use it anywhere you might drizzle maple syrup or honey; it makes a terrific alternative to maple syrup on pancakes and waffles, or drizzled over oatmeal and yogurt. Silan even works for savory recipes. Pair it with toasted nuts or nut oils in vinaigrettes; you can also drizzle it over roasted meat or toss it with roasted vegetables, especially naturally sweet carrots, sweet potatoes or butternut squash garnished with toasted almonds and chili flakes.
Big Island Bees 'Ohi'a Lehua Honey
This honey's airy, melt-in-your-mouth texture is great right off the spoon; mixed with butter or nut butters; or spread on toast, biscuits and cakes.
Bitter Housewife Cardamom Bitters
We like our cocktails and our cardamom. In this case, we get both at once, along with a surprising savory element in these handcrafted bitters from Portland, Oregon. The husky, minty flavor of cardamom pairs particularly well with spicy bourbon or earthy rum. We think these bitters might make the perfect Old Fashioned and add a new dimension to a Dark and Stormy. Beyond cocktails, these bitters are a terrific way to add easy flavor to whipped cream, caramel sauce, rice pudding or a pot of oatmeal.
Marchesi Di San Giuliano Bitter Orange Marmalade
Bitter oranges, also known as Seville oranges, are the go-to for classic British marmalades because of their natural pectin content and thick, dimpled peels. San Giuliano's hand-cutting method showcases these oranges' superior texture. The almost spicy quality of this marmalade pairs well with the crystallized ginger in our marmalade bundt cake.
Big Island Bees Macadamia Nut Blossom Honey
This floral, nutty honey from Hawaii is almost impossibly smooth and slippery considering its high viscosity, with a rounded, velvety mouthfeel. Produced without any heat or filtration, it retains a rich, deep flavor that's reminiscent of butterscotch and maple, without the bitterness of similarly dark honeys.
Wadaman Organic Black Sesame Paste
With deeply aromatic, rich, and toasty undertones, this sesame condiment can be used in both sweet and savory applications. It is ideal for adding some earthy depth to dishes, with a subtle pleasant bitterness that you can't get with white sesame seeds. Many Asian cultures use black sesame for desserts, with good reason—its slight bitterness cuts through rich dairy and balances bitter with sweet like no other. We like to substitute black sesame paste for tahini in our Tahini Swirl Brownies—if you like the bitter sweetness of dark chocolate, you'll love the roasted element black sesame paste brings to this dessert. Or simply drizzle Wadaman's Black Sesame Paste over vanilla ice cream for a visually stunning Japanese-inspired dessert. On the savory side, try a drizzle of the paste over our Sumac-Spiced Chicken (Musakhan) for visual contrast and an earthy counterpoint to sumac's citrusy tartness. Or add it to our Chinese Chili and Scallion Noodles to complement the sesame oil and add another dimension of flavor. Or substitute black sesame paste for tahini to make a roasty, earthier version of our Pita and Chickpea Salad with Yogurt and Mint (Fatteh).
Mymouné Rose Water
Rose water is the aromatic, subtly perfumed essence that defines the flavor of many of the baked goods of the Middle East; it has the remarkable capacity to cut through saccharine sweetness. We like that Mymouné's product tastes clearly like rose and has a natural, not chemical, flavor, so it isn't perfumey like supermarket versions.