Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Kensington Ketchup: "Ketchup for People Who Don't Like Ketchup"

Aware of my anti-ketchup position, the Kensington Ketchup people sent me samples of their original and spiced ketchup in order to see if they could convert me to theirs.

One large classic and one large spiced plus one miniature of each so that I could take them to restaurants with me!

It took me a couple of weeks to get around to trying any of them for the first time because I kept trying to be healthful and not get fries when I went out to restaurants. Finally, when my mother was visiting me in Boston, I bought some Trader Joe's Garlic Fries (but didn't put the garlic packet on them) and opened up the large spiced jar.

Spiced Ketchup (Ingredients: tomato paste, apple cider vinegar, raw sugar, onion, honey, cilantro, olive oil, jalapenos, lime juice concentrate, green bell pepper, salta, spices, agave nectar) - The classic is the same minus the cilantro and jalapenos.

It was so good! My mother and I both wanted more fries to dip in more ketchup, but I made us resist. The spiced ketchup tasted like a cross between ketchup and salsa but with a texture and consistency that's much better than salsa for fry dipping. It's also a mild to medium level of spicy, which should be enjoyable for almost everyone.

Still trying to resist eating too many fries, I soon bought some tortilla chips and poured some spiced ketchup into a bowl to see if it would work as salsa. When I was a kid my mother ate salsa and cream cheese together with tortilla chips. When she was fond of us, we were allowed to have a few bites. To emulate the practice as a lactose intolerant foodie, I used honey goat cheese in place of the cream cheese.

It tasted good, but it was a little too ketchup-y tasting to really replace salsa so directly.

I had just prepared garlic and sweet potato fries to dip in the spiced ketchup (12 o'clock) and the classic ketchup (3 o'clock) when a good friend called me to talk about a major life dilemma he's trying to figure out. I talked to him about it and tried to help, though I really needed to get off the phone for just a second so that I could take a picture of my plate of fries and ketchup so I could start eating. Soon I started eating little bits that I couldn't resist while he told me of his fears of actual homelessness if he didn't figure his situation out fast. The little bits gave way to eating bite after bite until I was down to just a few of each fry type, which I was barely able to resist finishing off before we finished the phone call.

As you can perhaps tell from the remaining amounts, I do enjoy the spiced ketchup much more than the classic. The classic is good ketchup though. The better quality and ingredients comes through in every bite. I could put this on all kinds of stuff. In fact once I finished my fries I started looking through the fridge, the pantry and the freezer for more things to dip in the remainder of the ketchup. Eventually I settled on just scooping it into my mouth with a fork.

The next day I was back for more.
Chicken burger with honey goat cheese (love that stuff) and spiced ketchup (plus some Thai green chile green beans)

I've been trying to use up all the food in my home, so I had my chicken burger on a bagel top and a miniature waffle.

I can't believe ketchup isn't ruining the food I keep putting in on. Au contraire, it's been a delicious addition all around. I even enjoyed dipping some of my green beans in it (though I enjoy mixing everything, so maybe don't try that at home).

I'm sure there'll be more adventures to come! Verdict: I guess I'm a convert to this one brand of ketchup.