Old-World Wood-Fired FlavorOld-World Wood-Fired Flavor
August 1, 2007
As consumer preferences have become more sophisticated over the years, translating more restaurant-style, high-culinary flavors into retail and chain-foodservice products has gained prominence. One restaurant flavor that Kraft Food Ingredients (KFI) recently sought to capture in a new ingredient is the essence from cooking food in Old-World, wood-fired ovens. Wood-fired ovens have increased in popularity in recent years—both in restaurants and at home, where consumers have fueled their love of cooking with wood by installing indoor and outdoor wood-fired ovens. In the process of developing the Fire Roasted Flavor, the company’s flavor scientists and culinary team carefully studied the art of wood-fired cooking by attending culinary programs covering the technique, scouting prime restaurants that use wood-fired ovens, and even building their own oven.
The Fire Roasted Flavor, part of KFI’s Flavors of Cooking™ line, delivers fatty, meaty, savory, brown, smoky, charred notes. “That’s really what makes it unique,” says Andrew Bosch, senior creative flavorist. “It’s very complex, with these different cooked notes—but they’re well balanced.”
Although wood-fired ovens traditionally find most application in cooking center-of-the-plate proteins like beef, pork, chicken and fish, as well as pizzas, the new Fire Roasted Flavor also conveniently adds smoky, savory flavor to vegetables, soups, dressings, gravies and appetizers. At the recent IFT Annual Meeting & Food Expo in Chicago, the company showcased the flavor in several dishes, including chicken cannelloni, an Alfredo cream sauce, pizza straws, and potato and Cheddar soup. “It works well with chicken—and especially beef,” says Bosch, noting that company testing has shown “vegetable and protein applications tend to work the best, so far.”
In addition to other ingredients in the flavor, which would be listed as gum arabic, maltodextrin, salt, autolyzed yeast extract, etc., manufacturers can list “natural flavoring” on ingredient statements. Typical use levels range from 0.5% to 1.0%, and most applications tested by the company have leaned closer to the lower 0.5% level, notes Bosch. The ingredient’s flavor intensity has held up well during company freeze/thaw testing.
Available in a powder Fire Roasted and liquid Fire Roasted Potato, the new flavor has a shelf life of 12 months when stored in a cool, dry place.
Kraft Food Ingredients
8000 Horizon Center Boulevard
Memphis, TN 38133
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