The 6 new spices and sauces for the summer season
Since the establishment of our Kampot Pepper Plantation, we have planted thousands of flowering trees, rare species and fruit trees. Surrounding our pepper plots, we have planted mango and banana trees. The latter allow us to offer our visitors banana chips with spices, which are very popular. Our mango trees, which take longer to grow, have started to produce beautiful fruit this year, which we wanted to promote by creating a new product, green mango powder.
Our Khmer Green Mango Powder
Also known as “Amchoor”, our Khmer Green Mango Powder develops a fruity and tangy taste. Ready to use, it is very simple to incorporate in your summer preparations.
If you are not familiar with Amchoor, it is one of the most common spices in India, used in curries, dhals and other chutneys. The method of making it is quite amazing: the mangoes are harvested from the tree before they are fully ripe, so they are still green, and the pulp is then dehydrated and finely ground.
So how do you use this new spice? In cooking, it will add a touch of dry acidity and a slight sweetness. It is advisable not to cook it and to use it at the end of cooking to replace the lemon perfectly, without adding any moisture. Ideal for seafood, such as oysters or scallops. But also for carpaccios, tartars or raw fish ceviches. The Amchoor is ideal for those summer recipes by the sea, to enhance the beautiful ingredients of the sea.
And if not? It can be used in sauces, such as marinades to tenderise meat, vinaigrettes and mayonnaises. For a more traditional use, it is used to flavour rice. It will also give a nice lemony note to a strawberry salad, a crème brûlée or an ice cream.
Our Hibiscus Powder
A few months ago, we made you discover the fruity and acidulous flavours of Hibiscus, in the form of Calyxes, to be infused, and enjoyed either hot or cold.
Whether you know it as Roselle, Guinea Sorrel, Abyssinian Pink Tea or Bissap, its intense pink colour is highlighted in this new powdered version.
It is this strong (and 100% natural) colouring power that will allow you to create very original desserts. We add it to our favourite desserts; in a panna cotta or a crème brûlée, but also to prepare ice creams, jams and shortbread, or even a surprising rice pudding… with a pink colour! We also like to use it in our savoury recipes: it will add a touch of pep to your risotto, fish papillote, and will offer a natural colouring, with subtle aromas, in your gravlax salmon.
But that’s not all, we also note that the Hibiscus flower has many medicinal benefits!
Our Wild Ginger Powder
Over the past few years, our Young Ginger Powder has become one of your favourite products. Always looking for unique products to offer you, we decided to expand our range of wild spices! After the wild cardamoms, here is our brand new Wild Ginger, which we offer in powder form. Its roots are collected in the forests of northern Cambodia, in the province of Preah Vihear, at the beginning of the dry season, in December and January. They are then cleaned, cut into petals and dehydrated at our farm in Kampot. They are immediately stored in a dark place to preserve all their essential oils. If you are already a ginger lover, you will become addicted to this new spice, even more powerful and aromatic! It is used as you would use fresh ginger, in soups and broths, but also in baking. It goes particularly well with chocolate, mango and pear. An explosion of flavours guaranteed!
Our Wild Galangal Powder
Another favourite spice in our range of aromatic plants, Galangal, is now available in its wild form. This product, whose tiny roots are hand-picked in the wild, is very rare and exceptional. Like ginger, it is even more intense and characteristic, and is a true flavour enhancer, 100% natural. Its notes of ginger, mustard and citrus fruit are a perfect enhancement to curries, meat and fish marinades, and also to broths. We love to add it to a simple mayonnaise to give it a little more depth. More surprisingly, Galangal can also be used in fruit and vegetable smoothies, and in your favourite desserts!
Our Paddy Herb
It is known as ‘rice paddy herb’ because ‘paddy’ means rice field. This plant grows wild in the wet environment of rice fields. In French, this herb is better known as ‘ambulie aromatique’. Our Paddy Herb develops a very unique aromatic palette. Although difficult to describe, it is immediately recognisable in Southeast Asian cuisine, especially as a special flavouring in Pho Soup. Its lemony, earthy notes are sweet, and are similar to cumin. More poetically, it is said that its aroma is reminiscent of the haunting smell that emerges just after a strong summer storm.
In South East Asia it is used fresh, but as it is very difficult to find in Europe, (and would not be very environmentally friendly), our Paddy Herb powder is an original way to give that characteristic touch to your dishes. Ready to use, it is very simple to add to many dishes; a raw beef salad or tartar, spring rolls, and the famous Pho soup. But also, in a vinaigrette, to give an original touch to an omelette, and why not a guacamole.
Our Palm Sugar (Kampong Speu PGI)
Have you ever tasted Palm Sugar? Made from the sap of the sugar palm, the Palmyra palm is called “Thnôt” in Khmer. It comes from the Kampong Speu region and is protected by a PGI (Protected Geographical Indication) which promotes this very special know-how, respecting the region’s ancestral traditional methods.
Our Palm Sugar is entirely natural and is of course unrefined. It offers an ideal alternative to other commercially available sugars, thanks to its low glycemic index (below 30). Its characteristic caramel, honey and spice flavour is much appreciated by bakers. It also adds a crispier texture to cakes. It is used in our preparations of palmiers, financiers, muffins and other pound cakes. The quantity can be adjusted according to your recipes.
The Khmer people also use it to add roundness to their traditional dishes, such as Crab sautéed with Green Pepper, rice sautéed with vegetables, Beef Lok Lak and Currys. It can also be used in sweet and savoury dishes such as caramelised pork for those with a sweet tooth!
And finally, we tell you all about our price increase
La Plantation offers its Kampot Pepper and spices at the fairest price all year round, and has done so since the beginning of our Cambodian adventure.
We will pay our employees and the network of family farms that we federate in a fair way, within the framework of our Fair Trade program (World Fair Trade Organization).
Unfortunately, the current economic conditions make the situation untenable for the company and we are no longer able to absorb the increase in our costs alone. First of all, we are faced with rising wages and production costs in Cambodia. We are also experiencing an explosion in shipping and road transport costs. Our delivery time (by sea and then by land) is now doubled, and this has a strong impact on us. Finally, the significant rise of the dollar against the euro and the galloping inflation in Europe have forced us to pass on part of these increases in our selling price.
In the interest of full transparency, we wanted to clearly explain why some of your favourite products that you are used to ordering will be increased somewhat. Don’t worry, it’s only a few cents on our small formats such as tubes, so you probably won’t notice!
Once again, we would like to thank you for your continued support in helping us through this long Covid crisis. We hope you’ll enjoy all our new products and we’ll be happy to help!