Earlier than we get into every part that Omsom delivers, I wish to state clearly: This is without doubt one of the finest cooking merchandise I’ve ever examined. A daring declare, I do know, however due to Omsom — a sauce package that makes cooking with unbelievable Asian flavors uncomplicated to newbs — I’ve turn into extra snug throwing collectively recipes I’ve by no means tried earlier than, and I’ve even expanded my pantry to incorporate issues like fish and oyster sauce. (This in no way deserves any congratulatory reward; I ought to have invested in these condiments loads sooner. Nonetheless, I’m grateful that Omsom was in a position to present me the way in which.)
Omsom is a direct-to-consumer meals model that sells “starters,” that are ready-to-use pouches that function the bottom taste for a selected Asian dish. “Every starter combines all of the sauces, aromatics, seasonings, citruses and oils that a long time of custom name for,” Omsom’s web site states, and man, this stuff are really bursting with taste.
The corporate was based by sisters Vanessa and Kim Pham, who’re the daughters of Vietnemese refugees. Whereas their Vietnamese Lemongrass BBQ starter is positively divine, all the sisters’ flavors rock. You should buy particular starters as soon as you discover your favourite, however I like to recommend testing out the product by shopping for a bundle, which incorporates all six starters that span six completely different cuisines. Right here’s what you’ll get:
- 2 Vietnamese starters
- 2 Thai starters
- 2 Filipino starters
East Asian Omsom Sampler ($29)
- 2 Japanese starters
- 2 Korean starters
- 2 Chinese language starters
I used to be particularly fortunate to have tried Omsom deep into the pandemic. A mixture of cooking fatigue, life fatigue and that painful mixture of nostalgia and longing you’re feeling whenever you look again on journey images and do not know whenever you’ll ever set foot in an airport once more due to a worldwide pandemic (simply me?) made the timing good to strive one thing new and pleasant. Omsom was it.
I first examined the Thai Larb starter, which I added to a mixture of mushrooms and combined veggies. The primary chunk took me proper again to my honeymoon in Thailand — and, to be actual, I used to be a bit stunned I might make one thing that tasted so good and flavorful. In fact, it was Omsom that deserved the credit score, since I didn’t do a lot past a little bit of chopping, slicing and dicing.
One other reward that Omsom gives? It makes you’re feeling such as you’re consuming one thing very particular. Each recipe I attempted was restaurant high quality. My household felt like they have been consuming a meal that got here from an precise restaurant, one thing that’s turn into slightly bit overseas to us over the previous yr. And right here’s one other cool factor about Omsom: Most of the recipes are crafted by “tastemakers,” the beloved Asian cooks of a few of the most influential eating places within the US. New Yorkers can be particularly thrilled: Included within the combine is Nicole Ponseca of Jeepney, Jimmy Ly of Madame Vo and the Suansilphong brothers of Fish Cheeks. It actually can’t get a lot better.
Each starter sauce comes with two recipes, often one that includes a meat protein and one with a vegetarian or pescatarian focus, and Omsom shares further recipes on-line. The East Asian starters are all vegan (and gluten-free), whereas a few of the Southeast Asian starters comprise seafood substances like oyster or fish sauce. I discover this to be so uncommon — often pescatarian or vegetarian recipes are an afterthought — and it felt rewarding to have my dietary preferences on the middle for as soon as. Nonetheless, for those who’re a meat eater, there are many recipes that incorporate meals like pork and rooster. And simply FYI, every particular person sauce pack makes two to 3 servings.
It’s best to. Omsom’s recipes promise to take not more than half-hour, so the sauces are really the inspiration for fast and straightforward cooking. In the event you detest a taste (I can’t think about this being the case), you gained’t be losing an entire bottle of one thing, and you’ll simply transfer on along with your life.
The Omsom bundle ($55 for 12 sauces) would make a fantastic reward for anybody who likes to prepare dinner, misses eating places or desires of touring once more sometime. You possibly can spend money on your favourite flavors ($12 for a three-pack) as soon as what you want, however I might encourage you to strive all of them.
Omsom’s group has labored out all the science to make the packets shelf-stable, which means they don’t must be refrigerated (I might really see myself touring with these). The factor is, I solely want they made monumental bottles of those tasty starters so I might hoard them in my fridge — I’m assured that nothing would go to waste.