CULINARY THRILL SEEKING — A world of flavors

Published 12:06 am Wednesday, August 19, 2020

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Not everyone who sees it’s Hatch pepper season immediately thinks, “I have some Maple Craft Bourbon Barrel Maple Syrup at home, and that would pair so well.”

You see what you’re dealing with, here. I love so many things. The Southwestern flavor got some caramelized sweetness seared into them on my stove, and it was a winner.

But hey, this little flask of flavor features drawings of barrels and a maple leaf. The aged Vermont maple syrup has hints of smoke, fruit, oak and buttery vanilla. Makers suggest it to elevate your pancakes and bacon, and my husband has confirmed it’s a natural win on French toast.

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Fans are also encouraged to use it as a dessert drizzle, marinade or in beverages, but Hatch peppers are not mentioned by name.

Mesa de Vida

Back in college, Bennigan’s announced a new product we servers were to promote: Jerk Chicken.

Say what? That was new.

We got a paragraph full of background on this layered flavor profile and years later I got to experience it in Jamaica.

This summer, I got a flashback with the Caribbean Mesa de Vida, Healthy Global Gourmet Cooking & Seasoning Sauces. One jar has flavored chicken, beans and rice for several servings.

How easy was that?

Their jars of easy “vacations in a jar” come in Creole, Smoky Latin, Mediterranean and North African, so you can travel the globe this year after all. Simmer, braise and roast or marinate, grill and glaze with sauces that go from instant pot to slow cooker.

I’m pretty sure they’d mix into cream cheese for one of those spreads that we’re missing from potlucks. I love the versatility and inspiration that are part of this line. They are Whole30 approved and extremely low in sodium. My little brush with the islands was a much-needed experience.



It’s possible that a notice that there’s less than 2 calories per piece splashed across the Tidbits package is the first thing to catch your eye.

These are little, tiny Meringues, which are on the extremely low-cal side and a personal crunchy favorite of mine.

Tidbits come in vanilla, chocolate, cappuccino, strawberry and many other flavors and I’m a very big fan. Make sure you seal the bag well so they stay crispy. And don’t let any concern about that be an excuse to eat the whole bag.

That would be an easy temptation for these bites free of gluten, soy, sugar, lactose and cholesterol. They are from North Texas.



To anyone else in your family, it’s chocolate milk. Oatsome Organic Oat Drink is whole grain, gluten and dairy free, also non-GMO.

Keep going? It’s sooo good that I got a craving for some in the middle of the day.

The box says you can mix it into shakes and smoothies.

I usually go for embellishment, but Oatsome needs nothing, but a tall glass. Better Body Foods is who you can thank for winsome Oatsome, from BetterBody Foods from Utah.


Darragh Doiron is a Port Arthur area foodie experiencing the world in flavors. Reach her at