Consumers seeking Asian flavours for lamb
Asian favours are said to ‘hit the spot’ when it comes to developing new recipes that use PGI Welsh Lamb in convenience foods, a taste panel survey by Hybu Cig Cymru (HCC) has found.
The Welsh meat promotion body is undertaking research with chefs on potential new products, in order to highlight the potential of lamb in the catering and convenience food sectors.
Part of this work has focused on creating three lamb burger recipes, and HCC has surveyed potential consumers on which flavours they preferred.
Small groups of volunteers, including visitors to the Royal Welsh Show in July, sampled three recipes prepared by Cardiff-based chef Imran Nathoo.
These included; A ‘Classic’ lamb burger with traditional flavours and seasoning, a ‘Sunday Best’ burger featuring mint and taste combinations found in a roast dinner, and a ‘Spicy’ option inspired by Indian flavours.
Results show 70% of respondents favoured the Spicy Burger over the other two.
Overall, a large majority said they would order a lamb burger if they saw it on a menu, and they were also keen to know the provenance of their meat, with 86% saying it would make a positive difference if the product was identified as PGI Welsh Lamb.
Imran Nathoo, who starred on MasterChef in 2017 and is becoming known for innovative cooking which combines a number of traditions, said: “It was great fun to develop these new recipes and introduce them to a panel of taste-testers.
“We know that younger consumers like more exotic flavours, but we took care to ensure a balanced sample, with more than 80% being over 35 years old.
“It’s therefore all the more interesting that the Spicy Burger came out on top – people clearly like the combination of lamb and stronger flavours.”
The burger research is part of a wider programme of pre-competitive new product development aimed at raising the profile and exploring the opportunities for Welsh Lamb in the convenience food sector.
“It’s important that we explore all potential markets for lamb,” said HCC’s market development manager Rhys Llywelyn.