Are you ready to clean out your musty old pepper and spice up your summer?
FAMILY SPICE TRAVEL
In 2015, we took our eight-year old twin daughters out of school and adventured through Asia and Africa for 8 months. Along the way we visited an organic peppercorn plantation in Kampot, Cambodia. The peppercorns were so fresh and fragrant that when we tried them it was as though we were tasting peppercorns for the first time. In fact, Kampot Peppercorns’ fragrance and flavor are so distinctive that they have been granted protected geographical indication (like Champagne or Parma Ham). We documented our journey in our travel blog. We wrote about establishing our new business, DRØM Pepper, in the July post on this blog.
The Bayon Temple at Angkor, one of the first places we visited in Cambodia
DRØM PEPPER LAUNCH
We launched on July 20th and the reception to DRØM Pepper has been fabulous. Many customers gravitate to the idea of adding the best organic pepper in the world to their dishes. After all, since they select gourmet salts and premium olive oil with such care, why wouldn’t they be equally demanding about the quality of the pepper they grind onto their food?
IN THE MEDIA
We were grateful to get coverage from The Good Food Revolution at the end of July. Check out Malcolm Jolley’s piece DRØM Supplies Better Pepper.
Louise and Nigel Biggar in the Good Food Revolution piece
It’s August and it’s been hot in Toronto. We wanted to run an experiment fighting fire with fire: Would spicy food give us a break from the heat? We made peppercorn brownies using Christine McFadden’s recipe from her terrific book Pepper: the Spice That Changed the World.
The brownies were ridiculously good. The chocolate hit first and was complemented by DRØM’s peppery flavour. The heat pleasantly lingered on the palate as our guests lingered after dessert: They couldn’t get enough of them! Scroll to the end of this blog post to see the recipe.
BRILLIANTLY-DESIGNED BOTTLE GRINDERS
Have you ever wondered why pepper grinders are designed in such a way that they leave pepper residue on your table after use? Our Danish-designed Menu Bottle Grinders avoid that problem by positioning the mill at the top of the grinder. You invert the grinder to grind the pepper onto food. Additionally, the grinder is really easy to load; no more spilling peppercorns onto the floor while awkwardly trying to load old-school pepper grinders.
DRØM Pepper sources organic, single-origin pepper from Cambodia. The single-origin aspect brings out the pepper’s greatness. It also resonates with coffee drinkers, including us. We like to roast our organic single-origin green coffee to make sure that we’re properly fuelled for the day.
We’ve been busy making deliveries around Toronto by bike. As you can see in the shot above, our cargo bike is branded and easy to spot. If you see us around, please say hello. Smaller deliveries are done by fixie.
Delivery by fixie
We’ll be back in September with more news from DRØM Pepper. We look forward to reconnecting then. In the meantime, follow us on Instagram. Like us on Facebook. DRØM relies on word of mouth to spread its news. Share our information with your friends. Thanks!
Black Pepper Brownies
Recipe ©Christine McFadden from Pepper: the Spice That Changed the World published by Absolute Press/Bloomsbury.
Plain chocolate (at least 70% cocoa solids) 200g/7oz
Unsalted butter 115g/4oz
Unsweetened cocoa powder 3 tbsp
Eggs 3 large
Vanilla extract 2 tsp
Salt ½ tsp
Black peppercorns 1 tbsp, freshly ground
Plain flour 150g / 5½oz
Makes about 20
These brownies are very dark, dense and immensely rich, best served in small portions. The subtle bite of black pepper helps balance the richness.
Preheat the oven to 180℃/350°F/Gas 4, moving the rack to just below the middle. Grease and line a 20cm/8in square baking tin with baking parchment, using enough to hang over the sides.
Break the chocolate into small pieces and put it in a heatproof bowl with the butter. Place the bowl over a pan of steaming, but not quite simmering, water, and stir until the chocolate and butter are melted and well mixed. Gradually sprinkle in the cocoa powder and whisk until smooth. Remove from the heat and leave to cool slightly.
Beat together the eggs, sugar, vanilla extract, salt and pepper until well mixed. Gradually beat in the still-warm chocolate mixture, then stir in the flour, mixing well.
Pour into the prepared tin and bake for 35-40 minutes until a skewer inserted in the middle comes out very slightly sticky - brownies are meant to be gooey in the middle.
Leave in the tin until completely cool. Lift from the tin using the overhanging baking parchment. Slice when ready to serve.
For extra texture, stir in 100g/3½oz chopped walnuts when you add the chocolate mixture.
No matter how tempted, it really is a good idea to wait until the brownies are completely cool before you slice them.
Brownies will keep for 4-5 days if you wrap them in foil.