10 Little-Known Condiments From Around The World

We’ve all got our favorite condiments for sandwiches, burgers, fries, and every other kind of food, but there’s a whole world of toppings out there just waiting to be explored. Here are some of our favorite dips and sauces from around the world, but don’t forget about the newest condiment in town: Hidden Valley ® for Everything. posted on

1. Ajvar

What is it?
A spread made from red bell peppers, eggplant, garlic and chili pepper, Ajvar is a popular condiment in Serbian cuisine. How you eat it is totally up to you. In the Balkans, Ajvar is popular as a stand-alone salad, but it is often enjoyed as a spread as well. The red peppers can also be substituted for hotter peppers, making the dish a little spicier.

Recommended uses:
Ajvar is great as a spread to kick up hot dogs and sandwiches.

2. Curry Ketchup

What is it?
Exactly what it sounds like. Curry ketchup is made by combing ketchup or tomato paste with curry powder. It’s got the elusive umami flavors of ketchup, but kicks up the hum drum ingredient with a good kick of a curry, bringing it to a whole new level.

Recommended uses:
Curry ketchup is a key ingredient in the German dish Currywurst, aptly enough. Try it on a sausage of hot dog some time.

3. Pebre

What is it?
Pebre is a condiment that is popular in Chile made from coriander, onions, olive oil, garlic and aji peppers. For the uninitiated, aji peppers are also known as Peruvian hot peppers, and are medium heat peppers, rating about 40k on the Scoville chart.

Recommended uses:
Chileans typically spread pebre on barbecued meat dishes, so keep it in mind next time you’re grilling.

4. Yeast Extract

What is it?
Yeast extract is sold under a variety of names, but it’s all basically the same thing – the byproduct of brewers’ yeast, vegetables, and spices. It’s primarily used as a rich, savory topping for toast and crackers.

Recommended uses:
Because of the rich, complex flavors, stick to spreading yeast extract on very bland or basic foods.

5. Shichimi

What is it?
Shichimi, also known as “seven flavor chili pepper”, is a popular additive in Japanese cuisine. You’re probably asking, “But what are the seven flavors?” Well, I’m glad you asked. They are: ground red chili pepper, ground Sichuan pepper, roasted orange peel, black sesame seed, white sesame seed, hemp seed, ground ginger, and nori.

Recommended uses:
Shichimi makes a great addition to bland soups or noodle dishes, but can be added to almost anything to give it a richer, spicier flavor.

6. Harissa

What is it?
Harissa is a condiment created from hot peppers, garlic paste, coriander, red chili powder, caraway and olive oil. It’s a popular dish in Tunisia, where it’s used as flavoring for couscous, added to stews, and used as a topping. It can get pretty spicy, depending on the peppers that are used, so it’s definitely not for the faint of heart.

Recommended uses:
Great on a falafel sandwich, and a dip for french fries, or even just on crackers.

7. Saffron Aioli

What is it?
Saffron is a spice that is collected from the stigma of the saffron crocus flower, primarily grown in Iran. Because there are only a few stigmas on each flower, and each one needs to be harvested by hand, saffron is the most expensive spice on the planet. Aioli, on the other hand, is pretty much just fancy mayonnaise. Clearly, they were meant for each other.

Recommended uses:
If it can be dunked, it can be dunked into saffron aioli.

8. Gochujang

What is it?
Gochujang is a fermented condiment popular in Korea made from red chili, glutinous rice, fermented soybeans and salt. Traditionally, it was left to age outdoors for years in large clay plots, giving it a deep, rich fermented flavor. It can be added to any dish to make it more savory, spicy and slightly sweeter.

Recommended uses:
Its unique flavor makes Gochujang stand out. Add it to a bland sandwich or salad to really make things pop.

9. Speculoos

What is it?
Speculoos was originally the name of a type of shortbread cookie popular in the Netherland, until some visionary decided to mash it up into a paste and started spreading it on other dessert food.

Recommended uses:
Great on waffles, graham crackers, crepes, or any other sweet foods that you might spread something on.

10. Hidden Valley® For Everything

What is it?
It’s like ranch dressing, but thicker and creamier, making it ideal for anything and everything.

Recommended uses:
For pretty much anything and everything.

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