Fifty-six per cent of U.S. households have hot sauce on hand in their kitchens, according to The NPD Group, Port Washington, N.Y. Its growing popularity has bakers looking for innovative ways to give their products a flavor kick to differentiate themselves in the marketplace. New opportunities are now possible with the introduction of a spray-dried version of the original Louisiana hot sauce, Tabasco.
“Our new spray-dried flavor can readily be used in dry mixes for the baking industry,” said Judson McLester, executive chef and manager of ingredient sales, McIlhenny Co., Avery Island, La. “It can be applied topically to snack foods or baked into biscuits, crackers and even cookies. It can even be included in a glaze or filling, or a breading or batter.”
The new ingredient made its official debut on March 18, at a media- and customer-tasting event at Kendall College, Chicago. This concentrated flavor enhancer delivers the signature taste of aged Tabasco-brand Original Red Sauce in a dry format.
Showcasing the new ingredient in a number of foods, McLester emphasized that in some applications, Tabasco ingredients are added solely for the umami taste.
“At low usage levels, you don’t really get the heat; rather, the ingredient functions as a flavor enhancer,” he said. “It’s flavor followed by heat.” That heat measures up at 2,500 to 7,500 Scoville heat units.Made with Tabasco pepper mash, salt, premium distilled vinegar and maltodextrin, the new spray-dried version does not add moisture to applications. The fine-sized particles provide greater surface contact and flavor distribution. The ingredient is completely soluble and has enhanced surface adhesion. McIlhenny recommends usage levels of 0.15% to 1% of the spray-dried form in finished products and 2.5% to 15% in seasoning bases. The kosher parve, halal certified, gluten-free, fat-free and low-sodium ingredient comes in 50-lb bag-in-box packages.