Friday, February 22, 2013

Review: Patak's Original Tikka Masala Curry Simmer Sauce

When I was in the process of moving a while back, I was trying to go through my cabinets and eat as many of the things that I had stored up for reviews as possible.  Among those things, were a few jars of Patak's simmer sauce that have led to some reviews and also this most recent review with this jar of Patak's Original Tikka Masala Curry Simmer Sauce that I picked up at Kroger for $2.99.  Each jar is fifteen ounces and contains three servings at 130 calories per serving and clocks in at a medium on the Patak's heat scale.  My prior experiences here on the site with Patak's products have been very positive, so I had some fairly high expectations heading in.  Tikka Masala is also more popular in Great Britain than it is in India, so maybe I should consider this a new ethnicity of foods instead of classifying this as Indian like I usually would.  What do you think?

The first difference in this sauce versus the other Patak's sauce can be noticed just by looking at the label of the jar.  All the other sauces I've reviewed have been tomato based as is this one, but this sauce is creamy tomato which means that it is a tomato base mixed with yogurt.  This results in a lighter sauce color that you could almost say is orange.  As with some of the other sauces, there's a healthy amount of onion chunks in here as well, along with a more than ample amount of black pepper that is noticeable not only visually but also by its odor.  Also noticeable visually are the garlic and cilantro.  Another point of interest on this one is that even though it is supposedly creamier than the others with its creamy tomato base, I found this one to be more runny than the supposedly non-creamy sauces.  Odd.

When I took my first spoonful of this runnier sauce, the first thing I noticed was how mild this was.  Of course, after about two seconds, that flavor that I thought was mild completely changed as I was then punched in the face by a whirlwind of black pepper, cilantro and cumin.  In fact, I wouldn't classify this as medium spice at all...I found that punch in the face to be spicy, especially when compared to the American definition of spice, especially when the cilantro came on very strong at the end and punched me so hard in the face that my nose started to run..  After all that spice, a lemon tang then hit which provided an interesting balance of tomato, spice and tang.  I can't say I've ever really tasted anything that has changed its flavor so many times in the course of just a few seconds...creaminess, then mildness, then spice, then ran the whole gamut.

Buy It or Fly By It?  There's a lot of flavor here and it's tasty flavor, so it gets a BUY IT rating.  That said, it's a tasty flavor that doesn't hit the notes that I tend to enjoy in my foods, so for me, it's not one that I'd pick up on a regular basis as I'd drift toward the other Patak's products that I've reviewed previously.  Still, it is an enjoyable sauce and if you are curious enough to try to ride the flavor roller coaster, this could become something that you really, really enjoy just like the British do.


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