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Welcome to Fancy Food & Culinary Products' blog, your place to read reviews of the great fancy and gourmet products we find in the marketplace.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Editor's Choice: Nando's Peri-Peri

Anybody looking for a flavorful way to add some heat to their favorite dishes should give Nando's Peri-Peri Sauces a spin. The bright and complex flavor of the Wild Herb Peri-Peri Sauce (the product I recently finished) transitions to a subtle heat that leaves you with the difficult decision of whether to take your next bite or take a sip of something cold. Generally I opt for that next bite.

The Peri-Peri (or African Birdseye) pepper was stumbled upon by the Portuguese in the early 1500s when they were colonizing Mozambique, along the southeast coast of Africa. The pepper was used by natives in sauces and marinades for fish and chicken, a technique the Portuguese adopted and spread south to South Africa during the gold rush of the early 1900s. Fast-forward to the 1980s, when Nando's, a now-international restaurant name was founded in South Africa by two friends, Fernando Duarte and Robert Brozin. The restaurants, now numbering 52 and located all over the world, celebrate Portuguese-inspired flame-grilled chicken and the Peri Peri pepper. It was only a matter of time before their cooking products became available to consumers around the world.

My first experience with Nando's, however, was at a NASFT Fancy Food Show. I received a sample of the product and while suggested recipes on have thrilling names like Prawns Maharani, Duck and Wild Mushroom Ravioli, and Steamed Lemon Pudding with Peri Peri Bitter Chocolate Sauce, I thoroughly enjoyed the sauce as a way to spice up boring pasta salads, mac'n cheese and even a burger on the grill (ketchup not necessary!). It makes a killer Bloody Mary, and it would be good in chicken or egg salad, as well -- in fact, on occasion I found myself scanning leftovers in my fridge, looking for things that would specifically go well with the Peri Peri sauce, instead of the other way around. The sauce comes in heat ranges from Extra Mild with Lemon up to Extra Hot, as well as variations on the original, like Sweet Hot, Garlic and my favorite, Wild Herb.

Additional recipes and ordering information are available on

For retailers interested in carrying Nando's products, contact Talier Trading Group, (201) 484-0306 or e-mail