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A New Look For Newly Weds Foods

The Newly Weds Foods logo has been a long standing and recognizable symbol of the company. However, it went through some change last year as part of an overall reimaging effort. After reviewing a number of iterations, the decision was made to retain those elements that so strongly represent the history and tradition of the company.

Inspiring New Tastes
The interlocking rings inside the diamond as well as the unique logotype used in the Newly Weds’ name have been a part of the company since its beginnings. Keeping them intact was felt to be imperative as they reflect on Newly Weds Foods stability as a company and, as a trusted ingredient supplier with a commitment to the customer. The logo change can be seen with the insertion of “inspiring new tastes” as the new position line. The message conveyed in this wording better represents all that Newly Weds Foods has to offer. Beyond technical capabilities, the company has all the resources in place to provide the kind of inspired thinking necessary to support successful taste innovation and overall product development activity.

We launched a brand new website as well. The site not only showcases a new technical prowess, but it mirrors the look and feel of the new logo. The website is more expansive and has a greater depth of
information than before. The landscape of the internet has changed. It’s a content driven place and the new website fits into that landscape very well. It is constantly evolving to better represent what we do here at Newly Weds Foods. There’s a lot we offer and are putting more emphasis
behind all those facets of the company. A major highlight of the reimaging is the
introduction of our new program Kitchencounters™.

Kitchencounters™, is a real-time, online digital kitchen, where any of our chefs worldwide can communicate directly with you, sharing the latest trend information from around the globe. It could be a simple interactive presentation of a new idea or a full blown ideation session to take your new product development initiatives to the next level.

Beyond the digital kitchen aspect, the program showcases our knowledge and innovation in many ways. The on-demand trend newsletters, videos, and articles are available to everyone on our website. The information we are sharing with you is a culmination of all our research and insights keeping in touch with the pulse of world wide trends.

Newly Weds Foods continues to demonstrate an ability to inspire new tastes in all facets of product development.

For further reading on what’s going on at Newly Weds Foods, check out Tasteology, our newsletter.

Posted in: Tasteology

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Baked Buttermilk Chicken Tender Snacks

Forget the fryer, these baked chicken tenders are packed with flavor. They’re not the simplest thing to make but it’s well worth it. It starts off with an hour long soak in buttermilk, one of the rising stars in flavors at this time.

Then they are breaded in a mix of garlic and onion powder and finished off in the oven for a healthier alternative to frying.

These are like the grown up version of chicken nuggets with the refined taste of dijon really coming through in the finished product.

Give it a try and let us know what you think!

Buttermilk ChickenButtermilk Marinade (see below)
1 lb raw chicken tenderloins, cut into strips
3 egg whites
1 Tablespoon Dijon mustard
3 cups panko breadcrumbs
1 Tablespoon paprika
1 Tablespoon garlic powder
1 Tablespoon onion powder
1 teaspoon salt

Buttermilk Marinade
1 qt. buttermilk
2 Tablespoon kosher salt
1 Tablespoon paprika
1 Tablespoon garlic powder
1 Tablespoon onion powder

Combine all ingredients and mix thoroughly.

Steps

  1. Preheat convection oven to 350°F.
  2. Prepare marinade; marinate chicken tenderloins for 1 hour.
  3. Remove chicken from marinade and drain well.
  4. In small bowl, mix together egg whites and mustard.
  5. Dredge chicken in egg mixture; coat evenly and well.
  6. In another bowl, combine breadcrumbs, paprika, garlic, salt, and onion powders and mix well.
  7. Toss chicken in breadcrumb mixture; shake off excess crumbs.
  8. Bake chicken on sprayed sheet pans until chicken is golden brown and internal temperature is at least 165°F.
  9. Serve immediately.

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Sriracha Garlic Buffalo Wings

Sriracha is hot. Doubly hot. Hot because of its unique “tangy with just a hint of sweetness taste”, and quickly has become a hot trend on tables across the country. I asked our chef’s if they could provide a few recipes for us to share with you. This one was a hit at my super bowl party so I thought I’d share it after such a positive reception. It was also super easy.

While the preferred method is to fry them, if you don’t happen to have a fryer, you can just cook them in the oven  at 425 degrees F for 20 minutes on each side and then toss them in the sauce.

buffalo-wings-518828_6403 lbs Chicken Wings
2 sticks unsalted butter
¼ cup sriracha sauce
1 cup hot sauce
2 garlic cloves
1/2/ tsp Black Pepper
2 tsp White Sugar

Sauté garlic in a little olive oil. Add hot sauce and sriracha and bring to simmer. Turn off heat and add unsalted butter, sugar, and pepper. Whisk until smooth

Fry Chicken wings and toss with Buffalo Sauce

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Cheesy Taco Soup

Brrr…it’s cold here in Chicago. After 19.3 inches, the fifth most snow Chicago has ever seen, followed by -11 (and that was before they added in the wind chill!) degree weather yesterday, I went downstairs to the culinary center to see what the chef’s could come up with on the spur of the moment to warm me up. It’s well known around the office that I love a good taco, but with it being so cold they whipped up this custom treat just for me.

This deliciously hot soup warmed me up right away. The mix of cheese and peppers balanced out each other perfectly, and the custom taco seasoning blend they used was just perfect. You can substitute with some of those other bland seasoning mixes you find at retail, but for a real kick you have to try this blend.

Call your sales representative today and let us show you how to incorporate this into your existing or new products!

Serves 6-8

Serving Suggestion

Serving Suggestion

Ingredients

  • 1 lb lean ground beef
  • 2 Tablespoons butter
  • 2 Tablespoons flour
  • 2-1/2 cups milk, divided
  • salt & pepper
  • 1 cup freshly shredded cheddar cheese, plus more for topping
  • 1 package taco seasoning
  • 10 oz of stewed green chilies and tomatoes, undrained
  • 15 oz black beans, drained & rinse
  • crushed tortilla chips

Instructions

  • Brown ground beef in a large soup pot over medium-high heat, seasoning with salt and pepper, until no longer pink. Drain and return to pot.
  • Meanwhile, melt butter in a small saucepan over medium heat then whisk in flour and cook for one minute. Slowly whisk in 1 cup milk, season with salt and pepper, then switch to a wooden spoon and stir mixture until thickened, about 3-4 minutes. Remove from heat then stir in shredded cheese until smooth. Set aside.
  • Add taco seasoning, stewed chilies and tomatoes, black beans, cheese sauce, and remaining 1-1/2 cups milk into cooked ground beef then stir well to combine. Bring to a heavy simmer then turn heat down to medium and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Serve with crushed tortilla chips and more shredded cheese, if desired.

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Rice Water and Mackerel Fish Ball Soup “Shanghai Style”

50% of consumers want to try new unique soups, with the Asian styles growing fastest. Our Chef Zhao is located at Newly Weds Foods Beijing, China. We reached out to him and asked for an idea of what is cutting edge in soups right now. He provided a twist on a very traditional Chinese favorite mixing French mushrooms with Chinese flavors.

It demonstrates how Newly Weds Foods is able to quickly provide world flavors at a moments notice. If you are feeling brave, try out Chef Zhao’s unique take on Rice Water and Mackerel Fish Ball soup, it’s delicious!

Serving Suggestion

Serving Suggestion

Ingredients for mackerel fish ball
Fresh mackerel fish
Pork fat
Milk
Rice wine
Salt
Ground white pepper

Ingredients for rice water
Rice 100g (about ½ cup)
Glutinous rice 100g (about ½ cup)
Water 1.2L – 1.5L (about 5 cups)

Ingredients for soup
Green asparagus or fresh spinach
Champignons
Ginger
Salt
Pepper

Cooking method
1. Remove the fish bones and skin.
2. Mince fish and pork fat in food mixer (fish and fat ratio of 7:3).
3. Season with milk, rice wine, ground white pepper and salt to taste.
4. Place in the refrigerator for half an hour, set aside.
5. Boil both the rice and the glutinous rice in the water until soft.
6. Strain the rice from the water and reserve the rice water.
7. Slice the Champignon and cut the asparagus into 2 inch pieces. Set aside.
8. Take the fish and fat mixture and form into small balls.
9. Bring the rice water to a boil and poach the fish balls until tender.
9. Add champignons, ginger and asparagus into soup, cooked until tender.
10. Season with salt and pepper.

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Home at last…for the moment

It was bitter sweet leaving Bangkok, but it felt good to be heading home for the holidays. The flight seemed to take forever. I’d love to have been able to fall asleep, but smashed in between three other people in a tiny row for over 17 hours…it’s just impossible.  I made the most of it with the inflight movie and getting up to stretch my legs as often as would not be rude to my fellow row mates. Touching down in Chicago never felt so good.

Photo by Brian Brindza

Photo by Brian Brindza

I was excited to get back and see my family and friends. I landed early morning on a Wednesday and was greeted at the airport by my dad. He drove me home to see my fiancé and dog. All I wanted to do was immediately hit the couch, but first things first, right? My dog greeted me at the door with excited barks and a wagging tail. My fiancé was just as excited to see me, although for her it had not been as long as the pup.

Finally with all my hello’s and greetings said I headed straight to my beloved couch and that’s when the jet lag set in. I passed out for a few hours and when I got up, the grumbling coming from my stomach meant it was time to get some food.

I sprang up and went to the corner fast food joint. I knew exactly what I wanted…what I’d been missing for the last few months. I immediately ordered an Italian beef and a (real) Chicago hot dog. With a full belly of my favorite food, I felt much better.

The adjustment was much more difficult on the return trip. It took me a few days to get acclimated to the time change and shake off the fog.  It was time to get into the holiday spirit so my first weekend back I did most of my Christmas shopping and went to get our Christmas tree.  After a good week back I was all settled in and ready to take it easy and enjoy the holidays. It was nice to see the whole family, and have a very traditional Christmas after being abroad for so long.

But Bangkok would not let me go that easy. Shortly after my arrival home, I got an email with the offer to come work in Thailand with Newly Weds Foods Asia Pacific in a more permanent capacity. This was something that we had been discussing while I was out there and something I’ve been seriously debating. With much thought and many discussions with my fiancé and family, I have decided that it would be crazy for me to turn down this great opportunity and an adventure of a life time.

It looks like I will be setting sail once again for the Far East. I had the chance to spend the holidays with family and friends and now I have to sell, pack or give away everything I own and head back to Bangkok. Thankfully a lot of things worked out in my favor and I’ll get to take my fiancé and my dog with me!

Looking back on the day I got on the flight to Bangkok I would have never guessed that I would be transplanting my life to a country on the other side of the world. I will confess that I’m somewhat scared to leave the place that I’ve called home for so many years and start a new life. But fear and uncertainty many times indicates that we are moving in the right direction, out of the safe confines of our comfort zone, and in the direction of our true purpose and progress. The one thing I can take out of this life lesson is that one must face their fears head on to take on the road less traveled.

The only certainty right now is that I will be making my way back to Thailand by the end of February and look to resume this blog post covering my adventures in food and life, exploring every inch of Thailand and Asia.

yepfinal

Posted in: Chef Brian Culinary Exchange

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One last long weekend, before home

So it’s my last few weeks in Thailand. My fiancé has headed home and I need to wrap up a few loose ends before leaving my place of residence for the past several months.

Photo by Brian Brindza

Photo by Brian Brindza

After a somewhat crazy work week I wanted a little time to relax and see a last little bit of Thailand before returning to the states. We had another extended weekend due to the Kings birthday and some of the Thai sales team asked me to go on a camping trip with them to Kanchanaburi, a province in west Thailand. They described it as a very beautiful area with huge lakes and giant waterfalls, so it should be perfect place for my final adventure. We headed out and after getting lost for an hour, found the camp grounds. Since it was the Kings birthday and a prime time of year to be camping, the place was packed.

This was unlike any camping I’ve ever done. The campsite was next to an amazing waterfall with unbelievable views of the lakes and mountains below. Everyone wanted to camp in one central location so it became a little cramped, like being at Banaroo or any other music festival they allow you to camp at. The landscape and scenery made the cramped quarters all worth it though. The night was dedicated to honoring the King on his 87th birthday with everyone wearing yellow and singing the Kings songs as well as the national anthem.

Rama IX has been King for almost 70 years and is beloved by his people. It is very interesting to experience the differences in how the U.S. as a nation views the person in our position of president versus the way Thailand views their King. This man is truly and universally loved. There is a very united front when it comes to the King of Thailand.

After a night of celebrating and cooking out we got some rest for the next day. We enjoyed some time in nature and found a few waterfalls to go swimming in and even one that we could jump off of!

After a full day of fun in the sun we packed up and headed to the town of Kanchanaburi, the capital of the province. Luckily they were having the River Kwai Bridge Festival. It’s this huge event with street food, shows and carnival rides. The highlight of the festival is the sound and light show that tells the history of the Death Railway, the Hellfire Pass and the Bridge on the River Kwai. It was a very interesting history lesson in the how the bridge was used in WWII to transport POWs. Although it was a very theatrical presentation of what is really a somber story, it was a great end to a full and experiential weekend.

We headed back to Bangkok so I could have time to pack up and get ready to head home to Chicago. Leaving Bangkok will be bitter sweet. I get to go home and see friends and family but I’m also leaving this amazing country that I’ve grown to love.

My time spent in Asia has been transformational and moving in so many ways. I’ve grown up a little and found out a few things about myself on this trip that make me a stronger person. Fumbling my way through a foreign country all alone has been an eye opener to me; it has shown me humility and respect, for culture and life. I’m sad to be leaving but I know some day I’ll be back. Who knows maybe I’ll come live and work here some day? Maybe?!

Posted in: Chef Brian Culinary Exchange

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Thai Cooking Classes

Now that I’ve been a resident of Bangkok for awhile, I decided that I need to learn how to cook like a Thai. With a little research I found Amita Thai Cooking Classes.  It had the best reviews and it was just what I was looking for.

Photo by Brian Brindza

Photo by Brian Brindza

My trip to class started at the Shangri La Hotel. I walked behind the hotel and made my way down to the docks on the Chao Phraya River. I was greeted by a water taxi driver named Nut, which was fitting because he was a little nutty. About half way along our journey he asked me to drive so he could have a beer. I honestly thought he was joking until I was behind the wheel and he was in the back seat having a beer!

Travelling down the river we passed many beautiful Wats (Temples) and The Royal Palace. We turned off in to one of the smaller canals and saw some of the Thai family’s that live on the canals and use the water way as a road. After a short ride we found ourselves pulling up to this beautiful house with an entrance to match.

Greetings came from a small smiling Thai lady who took me to a gorgeously decorated back yard garden full of fresh herbs, vegetables, and fruits. There I was seated at a table and was greeted by Khun Tam, another older Thai woman with a huge smile. She would be the instructor for the day.

I was surrounded by Thai grandmas! This couldn’t get any better!

Photo by Brian Brindza

Photo by Brian Brindza

She gave me a tour and long history of her home and life followed by a tour of her garden and the ingredients we would be using to cook that day. I had really hit the jack pot of home Thai cookery.

We headed to the amazing outdoor kitchen where she gave me my recipe cards and walked me through each recipe. We made Moo Satay (tasty strips of grilled marinated pork served with spicy peanut sauce), Kang Keaw Wan Gai (green curry chicken in coconut milk), Khao Man Som Tam, (coconut rice and papaya salad with chili lemon sauce) and Khao Niew Mamuang (mango sticky rice).

The dishes  were amazing and very authentic, from the fresh made coconut milk, to the home made curry.  As a chef you think you have a clue about how to cook certain types of cuisine but you realize how far off you are until you immerse yourself in that culture. The ingredients alone are just very different. We took our cooked lunches and sat in her garden and ate and discussed more Thai culture and food.

My belly now full, I was sent on my way home with a few small gifts from Tam and a grin on my face. This is a place I’ll be going back to for sure!

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Door County Habanero Cherry Chicken Chili

More and more consumers tastes are demanding new twists on everyday soups. Our culinary and marketing teams, working in tandem, are hard at work coming up with the next big flavor. One of the ideas we came up with was this Habanero Cherry Chicken Chili, not only hitting the unique soup trend, but also working in the trend of spicy foods.

Serving Suggestion

Serving Suggestion

This Chili is sure to warm your stomach and finish off sweet with a delicious subtle cherry flavor.

Sauce

  • 1 Tablespoon Vegetable Oil
  • 2 Cups Cherry Juice (unsweetened)
  • 1 Medium Onion (chopped)
  • 2 Fresh Habanero Chili’s (de-stemmed)
  • 1/4 Cup Lemon Juice
  • 1/4 Cup Ketchup
  • 1/2 Cup Sugar

Chicken

  • 6 Cups Cherries (no pits)
  • 4 Tablespoons Tomato Paste
  • 2 Medium Onions (sliced thin)
  • 1 Fresh Habanero Pepper (de-stemmed)
  • 3 Pounds Boneless Skinless Chicken Breast (cubed)
  • 4 Cloves Garlic (minced)
  • 1 Chicken Bouillon cube

Directions

The Sauce

  1. Add the vegetable oil to a small skillet and heat over medium high heat.
  2. Once hot, onions and peppers to the pan. Cook until onion is soft (5-8 minutes).
  3. Add the lemon juice, ketchup, cherry juice and sugar to the pan. Stir and cook until mixture is slightly thickened (about 5 minutes).
  4. Remove from pan and add all of this to a kitchen blender.
  5. Puree until smooth. Vent the lid so the heat doesn’t pop the lid off.
  6. Save and set aside.

The Chicken

  1. Add 5 cups of the cherries (save the remaining cup) to your soup pot.
  2. Continue adding the tomato paste, onions, habanero, chicken, garlic and bouillon to the pot. Top it all with the sauce and stir to mix.
  3. Cover and cook, on low heat for about 1 to 2 hours. Stirring occasionally to prevent sticking and/or scorching.
  4.  Once cooked, add remaining Cherries.
  5. While the chili simmers, stir and break up the cubes of chicken so that it’s shredded.
  6. Cook the chili until it gets to a consistency you like.
  7. Remove from heat and serve with chopped green onions and sour cream.

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Chef Brindza: Engaged

Let’s just say this may have been the best two weeks of my life. My girlfriend was fortunate enough to get a full month off to come and visit me here.  I’m very excited to see her after being apart for a couple months, so I woke up early to meet her at the airport. I couldn’t wait to see how she would react to experiencing Bangkok for the first time. After a nap to get her internal clock set to the right time she was up and ready to go.

Photo by Brian Brindza

Photo by Brian Brindza

The whole week was filled with new street foods, rooftop bars with amazing views, crazy shopping centers, temples, the grand palace, Chinatown, Khao San road, riding in tuk tuks, and dealing with horrible taxi drivers. She loved it. Well, everything except for the occasional insect or rodent that would scurry past on some of the more dirty streets. She loved the food and the smells and all the new sights. I even got her to eat that fish stomach soup from a previous post.

I was teaching her about the different foods and how to speak some basic Thai in preparation for a mini vacation that I planned for us. I had a week off to either go back home or travel around Thailand and decided to stay here with my girlfriend and head down to the southern islands of Thailand. A nine day trip to island hop and adventure all over the Andaman Sea seemed like a great way to spend the time.

IMG_0492I planned this trip because it was going to be amazing fun, but I also had mustered up the courage to propose to my girlfriend. We flew out of Don Muang airport to Phuket early on Saturday morning. Phuket is one of the southern island provinces of Thailand with beautiful beaches, mountains and palm trees. We headed to the town of Patong where we would spend our first two nights.

The views of the ocean were amazing so we decided to get to the beach as fast as we could and soak up as much sun as possible before it set. We watched the sun melt in to the sea and then headed back to see the main nightlife spots.

The next day we rented a scooter and cruised around the island to some of the other beaches and hit a few waterfalls. I will say that driving a scooter in Thailand is extremely dangerous but incredibly fun.

After two days in Phuket we were off to the next island. A mini bus picked us up and took us to the pier for a ferry ride to our next stop that included the islands of Ko Phi Phi Don and Ko Phi Phi Lee. They are located about a two hour ride from Phuket.

We got to Ko Phi Phi Don and headed straight to a boat in Maya Bay. This boat would be our home for the next few days. Maya Bay is a stunningly beautiful beach that’s sheltered by huge cliffs on three sides and situated on the island Ko Phi Phi Lee. This is the smaller of the two islands and right next to Ko Phi Phi Don, this bay was made famous by the movie The Beach.

IMG_0493We took our luggage to drop off at the tour guides office and just packed small overnight bags for this part of the trip. This was the highlight of the whole trip as we not only got to spend the night in Maya Bay, but I was going to propose at sunset on the beach. We headed back to the pier to get on Krabi Konnect, the boat we would be staying on. There would be about 25 other travelers that we would be spending the night with on the boat so my first order of business was to claim the sleeping spot on the roof of the boat so I could sleep under the stars.

This was the best move ever!

We headed to the beaches right before sunset and I was getting a little nervous because this was where I was going to pop the question. After spending some time walking around the island we went for a swim in the water and it started to feel like the right time to ask her.

With some mumbled words and maybe a stutter the words came out. “Will you spend the rest of your life with me?” At first she was stunned and maybe a little shocked but in the end she said YES! We headed back to the group and had an amazing dinner on the beach which included several buckets of mixed rum drinks. The whole group really had a great time playing games and singing by the campfire and celebrating our engagement with us.

We had a late night of fun but still had one last activity before we heading back to the boat to sleep. We got to swim in the deep waters with bioluminescent plankton. It was like a million little fire flies swimming around your body. It’s hard to describe, and really only something you can experience. After that we got our sleeping bags and pillows and headed to the top of the boat to fall asleep under the stars.

Photo by Brian Brindza

Photo by Brian Brindza

The next morning we woke up had some breakfast, did some more snorkeling and took a few more pictures of the beach. Then we headed back to Phi Phi Don, to spend another day. It was a very chill, small village with no cars and small tiny streets full of cats and backpackers.  We spent the night and did some trekking to the top of one of the peaks to get a great view of the tiny island.

Our next location was Krabi, another southern province full of amazing beaches and tiny islands. We stayed in a small beach town called Ao Nang. The last three days would be spent here so we decided to go big.

The first day we did some island hopping and hit six different beaches in one day on a speed boat. The second day we went on a jungle adventure and elephant trekking. We went swimming in natural thermal pools and did some jungle hikes. The last stop for the day was one of Southern Thailand’s most famous and interesting forest temples, Wat Tham Seua. Monks live, meditate, and worship within this maze of natural caves in a jungle valley.

We climbed the 1,237 steps to visit “the footprint of Buddha” embedded in the rock in the temple on top of the mountain. There were monkeys galore. One monkey even tried unzipping my back pack and taking things out!

The last day was a pool side day to relax and reflect on the amazing adventure we just experienced. I would recommend getting down to southern Thailand if anyone ever visits. After a long week we headed to Krabi airport and the trip back to Bangkok.

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