Barker's Better Original tomato sauce proudly uses New Zealand homegrown tomatoes. It's a great tasting family sauce that you feel good about putting on the table with 40% less sugar and 30% less salt than the market-leading sauce. A traditional home-made style tomato sauce that delivers true Kiwi flavour.
• Gluten free
• New Zealand tomatoes
• Made in New Zealand
• No added preservatives, artificial colours or flavours
• Vegan friendly
Shake before use. Refrigerate after opening.
Tomato sauce is not my thing and I am not a great enthusiast for table sauces in general. My husband would probably say that no meal cannot be improved by tomato sauce so this was a new test of whether it was the processed apple-based sauces that I am not a fan of or the concept of tomato sauce at all.
The jar was a bit harder than I would have liked to open initially but then it was fine and it didn't get "gooped up" over the weeks so that was a great start for me who hates drippy bottles in the fridge. I also found that the sauce tasted colder because it was stored in glass (a bit like milk does) which was a little added bonus for me as usually, we have our tomato sauce stored in plastic. Watch for the bottle being a bit heavy though. I used it a few times in dishes for guests and some commented it was different but didn't seem to be critical of the taste or particularly excited.
Tried it on toasted sandwiches and it was a bit wasted on me but that is probably personal preference of more texture. Husband liked it and rated it well for chips especially when I mentioned it was healthier. I found a few uses in dishes but tried not to "lose" the taste which meant it was more of a table sauce test for us.
Being a Barkers product it is high quality and you feel it is a bit of a cut above, between the taste and the lovely colour. I liked the smell and it definitely had a good tomato taste. We also tested the homestyle (first) and I think that ruined me as I preferred the more "lumpy/herby" taste of that though. For the price, I would prefer the homestyle but this is still a high quality sauce more in line with an old fashioned tomato sauce taste and look with none of the nasties.
"Kiwi's love.... tomato sauce on meat pies" like the new kiwiburger ad says, but, we love tomato sauce on lots of other things and as a condiment it really adds to a meal! I mean,a luncheon sandwich is just not the same when there is an absence of tomato sauce on there, right?!
Seeing this sauce come up for review, I was excited to try it for a number of reasons. First of all, that it is a New Zealand made and produced product, with no added preservatives or nasties, Second, the improved original sauce has less salt and sugar in it so it is better for us all health wise, while (apparently) keeping the good taste and Third (and no less important) being that it is packaged in glass, I can reuse the bottle, or gift it on to a friend who also makes homemade pasta sauce - win win!
I received the KIWIreviews package and it was nearly lunchtime, so I decided to stick with what I had planned, scrambled eggs on bagel halves, and to add the sauce to finish it off. As you can see from my picture, I definitely added a good dash of sauce (slop of sauce?? not sure how to word it!) to really give it a good taste.
First things first - the labels on each of the bottles is a little bit different - so it is very easy to distinguish between each of the types which is great for busy parents doing the shop, or trying the tell the kids which one to go and get off the shelf. The sauce is packaged in glass bottle making it more eco and reusable. It was easy to twist off and I personally like look of the glass bottle in the fridge (weird right?!).
Onto the most important, taste, liquidity and texture! Having three kids, I have some hard reviewers, but you will be pleased to know that this sauce definitely passed their stringent test, and we are allowed to buy it again!! It is not a really free flowing/thin sauce, but also does not pour too fast either. I did give it a shake before pouring, as figured a more homemade sauce would probably settle a bit more. It is a very smooth sauce - no lumpy bits which is again great for kids. The taste is delicious - lovely full tomato flavour, not sweet or salty, and adds to the taste of anything you would normally put sauce on!
We will definitely be buying this sauce again, my only negative is that it is not really in our price range for a "use all the tine sauce" but I would buy it for a treat, and just had a thought that it would great in a gift basket !
My kids have certainly taken after me in my enjoyment of using tomato sauce, although I have grown out of dousing my food in the stuff nearly every meal, my kids still love to use a good quantity whenever the meal suits, so trialing out a new sauce was worth giving a go. The design on the jar certainly caught my eye and I like the simplistic look to it, it just tells you what it is, no fuss. A turn down for me, however was the lid, because it is just a simple lid, I was concerned about the flow of the sauce coming out of the bottle in too much of a rush for the kids to be able to control on their own, particularly my youngest.
Having a pie and chips for dinner, all three kids were keen to try this out, my eldest had no problems with his quantity though said he preferred bottles where you squeezed it out. My middle child decided it was heavier than other bottles and wasn't a fan. My youngest ended up with one giant plop of sauce on her pie, which she wasn't a fan of and in her quest for as little help as possible, wasn't happy that she needed my help with this one.Tasting it, it wasn't my cup of tea, I tried it over a few different meals but it just didn't hook me at all. My three kids gave up on it after two meals and it seems to have made its way to the back of the fridge.
This wasn't a hit in our house, the flavours just didn't gel for us and other brands are far more preferred.
My daughter loves her tomato sauce and at one stage would eat it with everything, from a roast dinner to goulash! She is quite particular about the tomato sauce she eats and although she is happy to try different sauces, if it doesn't meet her high standards, she won't try it again. Rather than put the bottle on the table, I thought I would just put some sauce straight on her plate so she could do a blind taste test. She dug in and although I could tell she knew it was different to her usual sauce, she finished the sauce and asked for a top-up. I had to come clean. She said it was so nice that her younger sister (who is the opposite and does not have sauces on anything) asked to try. They both said it was lovely and very tasty. Asked which sauce she preferred, her usual sauce or this sauce, she admitted that this was nicer.
I personally love tomato sauce with hot chips and although not as fussy, I don't like my tomato sauce too sweet which is a problem with a lot of brands. I had a good sniff and had to admit that if it tasted as good as it smelt, we were onto a winner. It had a rich tomato aroma and took me back to my childhood, eating fish and chips on the beach with a dollop of tomato sauce. This tomato sauce has been used in burgers, with hot chips, with chicken, in fact, it's been consumed so quickly I haven't been able to take a photo!
I love Barkers of Geraldine products and they have produced yet another quality product. With 40% less sugar and 30% less salt (than market-leading brands) it's a lot healthier without the taste being compromised. The ingredients are easy to read and recognise with no added preservatives, artificial colours, or preservatives. The sauce comes in an attractive clear bottle although some of the text on the label is hard to read as it is light grey. It is more expensive than other sauces but hey, you get what you pay for! That being said, I think I may need to start investing in Barkers of Geraldine shares...
What is the biggest thing as Kiwis that we share in common other than being proud to be a New Zealander? Its got to be our love of tomato sauce right? I for one am an absolute fan of tomato sauce and find it is so diverse in the amount of food you can use it on ( I'm not as devoted to it as the people who apply it to ice cream though). Tomato sauce is one of those condiments that just adds that extra punch to food that takes it up the extra notch. To me, tomato sauce has to have a rich, bold and tangy flavour that has that zesty taste and Barkers of Geraldine have hit the nail on the head with this. The first thing you notice when looking at the Original tomato sauce is its deep red hue that assures you it's packing some flavour.
The first thing I decided to try the sauce on was fried eggs on toast for breakfast and the sauce suited the meal very well with its lovely tangy taste. Then that night I applied the sauce on to my dinner of sausages, eggs, potatoes and mushrooms and again the sauce just went so well with the food. I have to this point been a constant Watties sauce user but the Barkers of Geraldine sauce has taken the top spot for me and I believe this will become my staple tomato sauce in the fridge. It boasts so many positives with it being Gluten-free, Vegan friendly, having no added preservatives, artificial colours or flavours and is made in New Zealand using New Zealand tomatoes.
Barkers of Geraldine is one of my favourite brands as their quality is top-notch and they are such a loving New Zealand company with a diverse range of products that just keeps growing. I really love this tomato sauce and so does my family which is a great thing to have a product that everyone in our household can use and like. Keep it up Barkers of Geraldine you are doing an excellent job and I look forward to seeing your future products.
When you have a family to cater for, plain and simple is often the way to go. Kids like their food to be predictable and what may appeal to older palates is not always acceptable to the younger members of the family. However, there are some additives that help to make things kid friendly, and tomato sauce must be at the top of the list. What child does not enjoy a meal liberally seasoned with bright red sauce? It can mask hidden vegetables and all sort of other things that are good for them; they will happily devour everything without spotting the grated carrots or shredded greens lurking in the meat!
Spaghetti bolognese is a firm favourite with our family; it is quick to make, reasonably cheap, and enjoyed by everyone. To top it, you need grated cheese (obligatory) and a proper tomato-tasting sauce. Not the cheap imitation that tastes like rusty metal, but the real thing. In this sauce, there are no added chemical nasties, and the tomato content is a healthy 79%. As Mr Ten pointed out, the sauce counted as a vegetable. He might have just been right.
At first, we all thought the sauce was a bit runny. The children both put a large amount on their dinner as it came out of the bottle so fast - as Miss Eight said, it was quite watery. We thought it would not be economical to use as we needed so much. But then my daughter thought to look at the label again and there it was, almost hidden in the very pale writing down the side, the instruction to shake the bottle before pouring! None of us would have thought to do this as sauces do not usually need shaking, unless they are home made when the contents often settle to the bottom - and once we knew to do this, the sauce came out much thicker (or "blobbier" as Mr Ten described it). The flavour was also more concentrated of course.
We were all impressed by the list of ingredients - all natural and relatively good for us - and also by the packaging; glass is so much more environmentally friendly than the plastic bottles that many sauces these days come in. The sugar and salt components have been drastically reduced compared to most similar products; this is always a good indicator as to whether the product is safe to eat in large amounts. As someone who has to be careful around both these items, any reduction in either sugar or salt is a bonus for me.
Apart from spaghetti bolognese, we would also use it with sausage rolls and with barbecued meat. I tried it myself with toad-in-the-hole and found it was a good solid addition to the rather boring flavour of plain beef sausages. I also put a dash into some home-made curry sauce as I had no fresh tomatoes available, and that too added more depth to the flavour without altering the curry taste.
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