I’m a big fan of Belazu’s rose harissa paste. It brings a nice spice to many dishes, namely roasted veg. The brand focuses on good quality Mediterranean ingredients, from oils to antipasti. New in their range is three bottles of ketchup which were kindly gifted to me. I will be reviewing these in this post.
- Tomato and Balsamic Ketchup
- Smoked Chilli Ketchup
- Rose Harissa Tomato Ketchup
You might have heard about Belazu under their original company dating from 1991, The Fresh Olive Company. Founders Adam and George shared a desk at secondary school back in 1979 and became good friends. George trained as a professional chef, landing work in a Michelin starred restaurant and a private yacht. When Adam and George visited George’s mum in Provence, the quality of the olives there impressed them both, so they took 10 buckets back to England and started the company.
Between 1994 and 1997 the range expanded to include more ingredients such as olive oil, balsamic vinegar and pesto. 1998 -2016 saw them trading at Borough Market in London. In 2000, Belazu was officially set up selling just oils and vinegar to supermarkets. By 2015, there are over 300 products in their range.
Their ketchup range is the newest to hit supermarkets.
Belazu Ketchup Range
The consistency of the ketchup is really thick; there’s over 800g of Meditteranean tomatoes in each bottle. There is a minimum 41% of tomato paste in each flavour with the Tomato and Balsamic Vinegar Ketchup containing 47%. That’s more or less double the number of tomatoes compared to your standard supermarket ketchup!
They take some tapping out of the bottle, which is my one major grumble about them. I asked them if there was a trick to getting them out and they suggested a good shake with the lid on. I think a combination of this and then tapping where the neck of the bottle meets the straight edge (see photo) will help to ease the good stuff out.
How does it taste?
The tomato with balsamic ketchup is the closest thing you have to regular ketchup in Belazu’s range. Common ketchup contains spirit vinegar which is distilled from alcohol, usually cheap ones, whereas all three of Belazu’s contain a mixture of white wine vinegar and balsamic vinegar. Balsamic vinegar is made from grapes like wine, which will explain the sulphites in all of Belazu’s ketchup and white wine vinegar from white wine. After this, the differences between them all is the addition of different herbs and spices.
The tomato and balsamic contains salt, garlic puree, dried onions and dried mixed herbs. The harissa tomato ketchup all of this plus rose harissa and cayenne pepper. The rose harissa itself is made from rehydrated red peppers, garlic, sunflower oil, salt, dried spices and rose petals. In fact, prior to Belazu gifting me their ketchup range I was already a fan of their rose harissa paste. The rose harissa ketchup comes with a one chilli rating, whereas the smoked chilli ketchup comes with three chillies. Smoked paprika and chipotle chilli are added to this to give this its smokey fiery flavour.
In terms of taste, the basic ketchup tastes fairly similar to a supermarket brand, but where it shines is in its thick consistency and the quality of the ingredients. The smoked chilli ketchup has a good smokey taste and the heat on this is very nice, but not too overwhelming. However, my favourite is probably the harissa tomato ketchup, which is maybe not that surprising considering I love Belazu’s rose harissa paste.
The consistency of these makes it a perfect addition for cooking with. You can use it as a sauce or marinade for several dishes. I’ve tried using the tomato ketchup with balsamic vinegar in a fried rice dish and it was perfect! The consistency meant I didn’t have to use a lot of it.
Where can I get some Belazu Tomato Ketchup?
You can find Belazu’s goods at Booths, Ocado, Sainsbury’s, Tesco, Waitrose and M&S.
You can also order online via their own website: https://www.belazu.com/shop/