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Maggi Liquid Seasoning/Maggi Arome

Photo: Maggi Liquid SeasoningA few years ago I travelled to France for the day and stocked up on ingredients that are cheaper and better in France. One ingredient I picked up was a chubby bottle of Maggi Arome. This was a purely sentimental purchase – I remembered the bottle was in my mother’s kitchen when I was a child. I loved the shape of it then and as an adult the retro shape held a similar appeal.

Danny started to use it a few months ago, with stunning results.
“We are going to have to go to France to replace this.” He announced as he sploshed it into a chicken dish. “I’m serious.”

His look indicated that he would walk to the ferry if necessary.
I remembered that I’d seen it in Tesco or Waitrose. I drew a blank at both supermarkets. Tesco is the bigger store so I put on my strongest specs and determined to find it. I searched for over an hour and eventually spotted it – high up in the Polish section. A much smaller bottle than the chunky one from France – 100ml for 76p.

As the label on the French bottle of Maggi Arome was in French we had no idea what the ingredients were. When we examined the English bottle we got quite a shock – Soya Sauce (Water, Soya Extract, Wheat Extract, Salt), Flavour Enhancers (Monosodium Glutamate, Sodium 5′-inosinate), Salt, Acetic Acid, Yeast Extract, Dextrose, Flavouring.

“We can’t use this!”
“I don’t care, it gives everything that extra edge.”
“How many dishes do you use it in?”
“Well, anything with a sauce or a gravy. Most things that I cook.”

I must admit that I haven’t used it myself but the flavour of D’s dishes has improved. And he was a pretty talented cook *BA. If you can cope with MSG it might be worth adding a bottle to your shopping list.  The instructions on the bottle suggest adding a few drops added to soup or a salad. Perhaps this is the way to turn Danny into a salad lover? This was met by a furious guffaw and the remark.
“Maggi Arome has pretentions above its station.”

What pomposity from one who has benefited from the contents of this shapely bottle. I might sneak a drop or two in my next salad dressing and sit well back to observe the reaction. We have entered the ‘After Arome’ period after all and it’s my turn to play.

*Before Arome


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20 Comments

  1. Karen Lizzie

    MSG gets a very bad press, which may be undeserved. Some Googling can produce several articles which suggest that the only bad bit about MSG is the sodium part. Claims of allergic to reactions to MSG have also been disproved in several studies too. Glutamate is a naturally occurring substance in many things including breast milk.

  2. irridium

    i use the Maggi Chicken Powder as a good alt. to stock, sometimes for a noodle soup, and also, i use the small Maggi Stock cubes that you can find in a lot of the Tesco and Asda stores with an ethnic food section.

  3. Ruthdigs

    Never had Maggi but ‘Yay’ for mushroom ketchup!

  4. GeraniumCat

    Rather than Maggi, because I don’t like the ingredients, I use either mushroom ketchup or anchovy essence to flavour gravies, sauces and so on.

  5. I remember reading somewhere that lovage was known in Switzerland as the Maggi plant. It has a very strong taste, but it might be worth trying a very little in soup along with soy sauce (or miso or marmite/other yeast extract or MSG) to see if gives the right effect.

  6. Magic Cochin

    Interesting… I’d be interested to give it a try. Though the ingredients list does put me off a tad.

    For me good naturally brewed Soya Sauce is enough to give the umami hit. Or for a more complex flavour, have you tried miso? It comes in many types and and can be used to flavour gravy, caseroles, dressings etc.

    But, don’t buy miso in a supermarket, go to an Asian food store (Mill Road, Cambridge) and ask for guidance choosing which type to buy.

    Celia
    x

  7. …makes people wonder how I did it….

  8. I learned a salad dressing from my German mother in law that’s great, easy, and makes people how I did it. A little Maggi, a little wine vinegar, twice as much olive oil and fresh ground black pepper. That’s it.

    I have to keep Maggi in the house, despite it nefarious ingredients, because my husband grew up with it in Germany. And I’m embarrassed to tell you that occasionally, he’ll get up from the table and go to the kitchen and come back with the Maggi bottle, with which he ‘fixes’ something I’ve cooked. It doesn’t happen often, but I’m still stung when it does.

  9. Aahh … Maggi – all the childhood memories… No traditional German soup is complete without it. My fondest memories are of my Grandmothers clear beef stock, with julienne, vermicelli and Maggi! While I don’t use it often nowadays, I still can’t conceive of not having any in my cupboard.

  10. daisy_winnie

    my grandparents were Polish so we grew up with maggi and have since introduced a few people to it, we tended to have it on plain pasta that had been cooked with either a chicken or beef stock, it’s a bit naughty, but nice

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