food condiments

5 Condiments To Keep In The Kitchen

Your kitchen might be full of them but we bet you’ve never had a good look at the different types of condiments and sauces that you use regularly. This is all well and good, but have you ever stopped to consider if the condiments you have are actually healthy?  Probably not. That's why we are here to help you up your condiment game and suggest 5 delicious and essential condiments to keep in your pantry.  

1. Apple cider vinegar with ‘The Mother’ 

Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV) has received a lot of attention for its many potential and perceived benefits. It’s a very versatile product and can be used in a variety of ways - check out our ACV infused recipe hub for some inspiring ways to use apple cider vinegar e.g as a delicious marinade in our Steamed Cod Fillet Recipe (a must try!). But according to the internet, there is nothing that apple cider can’t do.

Here is a very brief science lesson on how ACV is made: Apples are crushed to create a liquid that is mixed with yeast to start a fermenting process which turns alcohol to apple cider vinegar. A by-product in this process is what creates the infamous ‘Mother’. The ‘Mother’ is almost the star of the show, many believe this is the 'healthiest part' of the vinegar, although there are currently no conclusive studies. At OSU, all our apple cider vinegar products all feature the  ‘Mother’, thus, retaining all of its vital nutrients.[1] [2]    

Why is it a Condiment to have? 

So why should apple cider vinegar be a serious contender for pantry condiment selection spot number 1? Well, there are a lot of perceived health benefits of apple cider. [3] Also, apple cider vinegar has been used for centuries - so it must be good right? 

But one of the most important factors is that our Apple Cider Vinegar products taste so good. [4] Gone are the days of wincing after drinking some apple cider vinegar and hello are the days of savouring every sip! Get your own bottle now and add a dash of either our Original Apple Cider Vinegar or our Blueberry and Pomegranate Vinegar to any dish - trust us, the flavour ACV adds is out of this world. Don’t worry, we have a lot of recipes that you can check out for wonderful meals and drinks e.g. our No-bake Blueberry Cheesecake (yes no oven or anything!) or our OSU virgin Mary

 2. Olive Oil 

Next up is olive oil. This is something that we all have in our kitchen, but how well do we know it? Humans have been using olive oil for a long time now but why is it such a staple in the kitchen? Olive oil is full of good monounsaturated fat -  A big component of olive oil is a monounsaturated fat called oleic acid, which makes up 73% of the oil’s content. Studies suggest that oleic acid reduces inflammation[5]

Why is it a Condiment to have? 

Like apple cider vinegar, olive oil is also very versatile. It’s added to food for its flavour, as well as used for frying and cooking. Some oil and fats can become damaged when exposed to high heat, but because olive oil is amazing and has a high smoke point, it is the perfect kitchen companion for all sorts of cooking. [6] Try our delicious Caesar Salad recipe, which is quick and easy to make and has a decent portion of olive oil, and of course, added OSU apple cider vinegar to take it to the next level.

3. Ketchup 

Ketchup is probably the most famous condiment out there. It has been around for a long time, but it was not always like how you see it now. Did you know that ketchup originated from China and was made from pickled fish or shellfish. This fermented fish paste can be traced back to 300 B.C. It wasn’t until 1812 that the first tomato-based ketchup was made using tomatoes, distilled vinegar, brown sugar, salt and various spices. [7]

Why is it a Condiment to have? 

Ketchup is essential because it goes with so many meals and adds a unique flavour. There are two things to consider when shopping for your ketchup – the sugar and the salt. Look out for a reduced salt and sugar ketchup. This is important as it’s very easy to consume high volumes of salt and sugar in ketchup without realising. There are even great recipes available where you can make your own ketchup using healthy ingredients like organic honey and ACV. Try adding more flavour to our smashed avocado and prawn toast recipe with a drop of the ketchup of your choice. 

 4. Soya Sauce 

Soya sauce is a necessary condiment option. Soy Sauce originated in China over 2000 years ago. It is brewed from fermented soybeans, wheat, salt and fermenting agents and it is used to add salty, sweet and umami flavours to food.[8]

Why is it a Condiment to have? 

Not only is soya sauce low in carbs, but it’s also low in calories. Some research has shown that because it’s fermented, soya sauce might help support the growth of beneficial bacteria in the digestive tract.[9] One thing to note however, is that Soy Sauce can be high in sodium. So if you're sensitive to sodium levels, when you’re shopping look out for the low sodium soy sauce products. Also, soy sauce can replace salt in most recipes and add this lovely umami taste. We have few recipes that utilise the combination of flavours that is soy sauce and apple cider vinegar e.g. our Hosomaki rolls and our delicious Sunday brunch bowl

 5. Honey 

Honey is something everyone needs in their kitchen cupboard. It’s a natural, organic sweetener and if that doesn't sound good enough for you - it also has zero additives and is extremely versatile in the kitchen.[10] With an indefinite shelf-life and wide range of uses, it’s amazing!  You can drizzle some honey on our delicious Okonomiyaki Pancake or mix a little bit into our Ginger Tea for enhanced flavour. Honey is often mixed with apple cider vinegar to help mellow the puckery taste of some bitter ACV products out there. Luckily with our OSU product, we put taste at the forefront of our Apple Cider Vinegar preventing that bitter taste. That being said, honey is a must have in the pantry!

 Which Is The Best Condiment?

There are lots of condiments out there but the best ones are those that are taken in moderation, keeping your overall health in mind. We have managed to develop some great additives to food that enhance their taste, but we have to be aware of their effects. Remember there are always healthy alternatives to the ones that you find on the shelves that can either be bought or made yourself. All said and done, our opinion is that OSU Apple Cider Vinegar is the best condiment to have in your kitchen pantry! Make sure you try it out for yourself here

 References 

  1. https://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/apple-cider-vinegar-diet-does-it-really-work-2018042513703
  2. https://www.waitrose.com/ecom/products/osu-apple-cider-vinegar-blueberry-pomegranate/611349-745167-745168
  3. https://www.amazon.co.uk/product-reviews/B0813WQLX8/ref=cm_cr_unknown?ie=UTF8&filterByStar=five_star&reviewerType=all_reviews&pageNumber=1&filterByKeyword=health+benefits
  4. https://www.waitrose.com/ecom/products/osu-apple-cider-vinegar-blueberry-pomegranate/611349-745167-745168
  5. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/17168666/ 
  6. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/24775425/ 
  7. https://www.history.com/news/ketchup-surprising-ancient-history
  8. https://www.soysauce.or.jp/en/the-history-of-soy-sauce
  9. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/0740002084900674
  10. https://www.manukacorner.co.nz/natural-or-pure-or-raw-honey/