Our ingredients – pomegranate molasses

We often get a whole host of questions about how to use the products and ingredients in our shop – from the extraordinary array of herbs, spices and chillies, through to the ever trendy black garlic…not forgetting the adventurous and curious flavours of cordials on hand.

So, we thought it was about time to start sharing some of our favourite hints, tips and recipes to get you going and maybe even debunk some myths along the way. 

Today we’re focusing on Pomegranate Molasses, why?

Well, too many times we’ve heard you cry, ‘I used it once and then it sat in my cupboard for a billion years unused’… a travesty!

There’s so much you can do with this ancient and wondrous ingredient – it’s sweet but sour, thick, sharp, rich, deep and completely versatile.

As a native fruit of Persia, the pomegranate (and pomegranate molasses) is synonymous with Middle Eastern, African and Mediterranean cooking, which is where the ingredient really does shine.

It adds a fruity almost citric taste to any dish meaning there’s no excuse as to why you can’t get creative with the ingredient.

It can work as a super substitute for balsamic vinegar, honey, or even lemon juice – anything you want to imbue with a richness, tartness, sweetness.

Think drinks, soups, stews, dressings and desserts…no longer may this ingredient sit sorrowfully in the back of your cupboard!  

Here are three recipes to get you going: – stick with it

1, 2, 3 BAKE!

Put a pin in this one

You could make your own at home, but we promise you it’s probably not worth it.

Pomegranate molasses is made from the fruits fresh juice, which is reduced to a thick, luxurious syrup to enhance and intensify the natural flavours.

Technically it’s not really a molasses, just a delicious concentrated syrup.

Now, it might sound easy to make yourself, but fresh pomegranates are really expensive and often a right faff, so why make your life difficult making it yourself?!

Oh! And looking for something a bit different? Don’t like pomegranate? Well don’t you worry – we stock Cherry Molasses too!

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mmm… and glug… in UK Shop of the Year finals

mmm glug shop of the year 2018 finals

mmm… and glug… is one of a handful of grocery shops across the UK to make it to the finals of the Guild of Fine Food’s 2018 Shop of the Year awards.

Shop of the Year mmm glug logoJudges from the guild, which recognises and promotes excellence in independent retail, will visit the Newcastle store and carry out a series of mystery shopping exercises, before announcing the overall winner in September.

Owner Simone Clarkin, is delighted to be recognised for such a prestigious award, especially at a time when independent high street shops face pressure from supermarkets and out of town retailers.

She said: “When we originally opened our Grainger Market store back in 2008 we wanted to get people in the north east and beyond to think about what they eat and drink – and where it comes from.

“Over the past ten years, we have expanded twice within the Grainger Market and then in late 2017 into the city centre – all done during a climate of huge retail uncertainty.

“It is great to know that our efforts to provide great food and drink, and hopefully even greater customer service and advice to shoppers has helped us reach this stage.

“We really hope that our ethos of being there to provide easy access to good food and drink to the region can help us to bring this prestigious award back the north east.

The Guild’s panel of highly experienced judges, which includes Edward Berry of The Flying Fork, Stuart Gates, who has worked for both Harrods and Fortnum & Mason, award-winning retailer Tracey Colley and Georgina Mason from Gonalston Farm Shop, will rate, score and feedback on every aspect of mmm… and glug… before agreeing to a winner.

On Thursday, 20 September, Shop of the Year 2018 will reach an exciting finale when the world of fine food gathers at the Guild of Fine Food’s London base, to find out the winners of Shop of the Year 2018.

mmm… and glug… expanded its business with a move to larger headquarters in Newcastle city centre in late 2017 and plans to launch a ‘click and collect’ online shop during its tenth year in business.

Earlier this year mmm… and glug… came out top in North East and Cumbria in the prestigious RateBeer.com awards.

The awards to breweries, pubs and retailers, sees beer lovers from dozens of countries rate their favourite tipples and where they buy or drink them.

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Want to work at mmm… and glug…? We are recruiting!

mmm and glug are recruiting

We are currently recruiting for two part-time Team Members/Retail Assistants to work an average of 12 hours per week (flexible shifts).

These would initially be temporary roles to cover maternity leave for a period of eight months.

There may, however, be the opportunity for the role to become permanent.

Our ideal candidates will:

  • Be comfortable engaging with people in a proactive and friendly way
  • Enjoy selling
  • Have an interest in food and drink
  • Show entrepreneurial spirit
  • Be prepared to work hard
  • Have basic IT skills
  • Be competent in maths.

Key tasks will include:

  • Greeting, assisting and advising customers
  • Being proactive in selling food and drink products
  • Making sure every customer is well served
  • Accepting and unloading deliveries (some heavy lifting involved)
  • Merchandising and maintenance of stock
  • Keeping the shop clean and tidy.

Other information:

  • You must be available to work weekends and Bank Holidays (Statutory Notice of Rights in Relation to Sunday Shop Work applies).
  • You must also be available to work up to and including Monday, 24 December, 2018.
  • As this role involves the selling of alcohol you must be 18 years or over.

Salary: £7.83 per hour.

How to apply

Please submit (a) your CV and (b) a covering note outlining three reasons why you believe you are a perfect fit for this role to jobs@mmm-glug.co.uk

Please note: When applying please quote Job Reference: PT80618 – we will not accept any applications that do not quote this reference.

Closing date for applications: 11.59pm Friday, 8 June 2018.

mmm… and glug… expanded its business with a move to a larger headquarters in Newcastle city centre in late 2017 and plans to launch a ‘click and collect’ online shop during its tenth year in business.

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Father’s Day beers at mmm… and glug…

Firebrick Brewery Father's Day

A Newcastle store is helping shoppers who don’t know their blondes and bitters from their IPAs to find the Father’s Day perfect pint.

Grainger Street-based mmm… and glug… has enlisted the help of Blaydon-based Firebrick Brewery to host a beer tasting for non-beer lovers on Saturday, 16 June.

The free event, from 1pm onwards, will hopefully make it easy for local mums, partners, sons and daughters (aged 18 and over) to pick perfect father-friendly beers.

Firebrick will be tasting some of their most popular beers, including ‘Wey-Aye PA’ pale ale, ‘Elder Statesman’ bitter and ‘Toon Broon’ brown ale.

mmm… and glug… owner Simone Clarkin is hoping to not only help non-beer lovers find the right Father’s Day gift, but also to see even more new converts to local beers.

She said: “We regularly hold ‘meet the brewer’ events, but this is slightly different as we are aiming it at family members who might not really know what they should buy.

“We will be helping out lots of local shoppers to pick the right beers – and hopefully try a few out themselves.

“Our north east beers are hugely popular and great local breweries like Firebrick are helping us to spread the word of just how good these beers can be.”

The free Father’s Day tasting (over 18s only) is being held at mmm… and glug…129 Grainger Street, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE1 5AE from 1pm on Saturday, 16 June.

mmm… and glug… expanded its business with a move to a larger headquarters in Newcastle city centre in late 2017 and plans to launch a ‘click and collect’ online shop during its tenth year in business.

Earlier this year mmm… and glug… came out top in North East and Cumbria in the prestigious RateBeer.com awards.

The awards to breweries, pubs and retailers, sees beer lovers from dozens of countries rate their favourite tipples and where they buy or drink them.

Want to know more about Father’s Day beers?

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Consett Ale Works tasting at mmm… and glug…

Consett Ale Works at mmm and glug

mmm… and glug… is hosting a free tasting event with the new look – but same great tasting – Consett Ale Works beers this Saturday (19 May) from 1pm onwards.

Leaning heavily on the town’s iron works heritage, Consett Ale Works has developed distinctive brands, such as Red Dust and Steel Town Bitter.

Their beers hark back to the days when prosperity could not be separated from the steel which built Blackpool tower and the nation’s nuclear submarines.

The recipes for the brews were created by Consett’s master brewer
Rufus, with the former ironworks in mind.

They wanted to have ales that would be flavoursome enough to have quenched the thirst of the ironworker’s as they left work after a hot and gruelling day in front of the furnaces.

Consett’s beers are for them and for you.

What we are tasting this Saturday

  • Red Dust – ruby red in colour and beautifully clear with a robust, full-flavoured malt and fruit nature.
  • White Hot – the perfect summer beer; highly hopped and sparkling with wheat-like cereal characteristics.
  • Consett Pale Ale – a quintessential English pale ale
  • Men of Steel – full flavoured golden hoppy ale
  • The Works – a dark robust ale
  • Consett Stout – a rich creamy stout.

Want to know more about Consett Ale Works?

More tasting events at mmm… and glug… (all from 1pm)

  • Saturday, 26 May – Hogarth Honey: Taste Spring 2018 honey and meet 20,000 bees who made it
  • Saturday, 26 May – Brinkburn Street Brewery: Taste beers from one of the closest breweries to our shop
  • Saturday, 9 June – Twice Brewed: Taste Bardon Mill-brewed beers, including their ‘Ale Caesar’ amber
  • Saturday, 16 June – Firebrick Brewery: Taste Blaydon-brewed beers, including ‘Elder Statesman’ bitter for the perfect Father’s Day gift
  • Saturday, 16 June – Fat Lass Jams: Taste Bridget’s locally made jams and preserves, including her ‘Newkie Brown’ chutney.

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Meet the Hogarth Honey bees at mmm… and glug…

Hogarth Honey bees at mmm glug

Local shoppers are being given the chance to meet some of the hardest workers in the region, the Hogarth Honey Bees, and taste the fruits of their labour.

Food and drink emporium mmm… and glug…, based on Grainger Street, Newcastle, will host over 10,000 local honey bees on Saturday, 26 May from 12 noon onwards.

Hogarth Honey bees at mmm and glug Grainger MarketThe Hogarth Honey bees, which proved a huge hit at mmm…’s former Grainger Market store last summer (pictured right), are returning with the first of their precious local summer honey.

The free event will give youngsters (and those not so young) the chance to taste the honey and find out more about protecting the much-needed insects.

mmm… and glug… owner Simone Clarkin hopes to not only get families to taste the honey, but also to find out how to encourage bees to their own gardens and neighbourhoods.

She said: “We certainly expect the shop to be ‘buzzing’ after last year’s meet the bees event literally stopped people in their tracks outside our shop.

“Bees are pollinators and play a huge part in the UK’s food chain. One third of the food we eat would not be available, but for the hard work of our bees.

Hogarth Honey at mmm and glug“When the Hogarth Honey bees visited us last year we found many people, particularly children, who had never tasted honey before – and they loved it!”

Michael McCartney of Hogarth Honey, based in Wolviston Grange, is looking forward to once again being asked lots of questions about his much-loved bees.

He said: “Bees fly about 55,000 miles to make just one pound of honey, that’s over twice around the world. And honey was even used as currency in Roman times.

“But, bees are in danger of disappearing from our environment. Farming practices continue to disturb the natural habitats of solitary bees and bumblebees.

“The honey bee is also under attack from the Varroa mite and it is only the care provided by myself and other local beekeepers that is keeping north east colonies alive.

“I would love to talk to as many potential beekeepers and amateur gardeners as possible when we visit mmm… and glug… so we can spread the word about protecting our local bees.”

Artisan bakers, Pink Lane Bakery will be providing hand-made Hogarth honey oat loaves to taste at the event, with Brinkburn Street Brewery also holding a tasting session of their locally brewed ales (over 18s only).

mmm… and glug… expanded its business with a move to a larger headquarters in Newcastle city centre in late 2017 and plans to launch a ‘click and collect’ online shop during its tenth year in business.

Want to know more about Hogarth Honey?

More tasting events at mmm… and glug… (all from 1pm)

  • Saturday, 26 May – Brinkburn Street Brewery: Taste beers from one of the closest breweries to our shop
  • Saturday, 9 June – Twice Brewed: Taste Bardon Mill-brewed beers, including their ‘Ale Caesar’ amber
  • Saturday, 16 June – Firebrick Brewery: Taste Blaydon-brewed beers, including ‘Elder Statesman’ bitter for the perfect Father’s Day gift
  • Saturday, 16 June – Fat Lass Jams: Taste Bridget’s locally made jams and preserves, including her ‘Newkie Brown’ chutney.

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Parlour Made cheese tasting at mmm… and glug…

Parlour Made cheese at mmm and glug

mmm… and glug… is hosting a free tasting of ‘Parlour Made’ cheeses on Saturday, 12 May (from 1pm to 4pm) so customers can taste their award-winning Durham cheeses.

Parlour Made Hattie and mmm and glugBased in the beautiful village of Mordon in County Durham, Parlour Made Artisan Cheese is made on the farm using traditional methods.

Owners, Neil and Carol only use fresh milk, produced on the farm by their own cows, including Hattie (pictured right) to lovingly create each handmade cheese using traditional recipes.

Over time, they have carefully developed a range of artisan cheeses of exceptional quality and taste, including four we will be tasting tomorrow:

  • Mordon Blue – mild and creamy blue cheese
  • Durham Camembert – soft surface-ripened cheese
  • Mordon Isle – semi-soft continental-style cheese
  • Farmhouse white – mild with a slightly crumbly texture.

Want to know more about Parlour Made cheeses?

More tasting events at mmm… and glug… (all from 1pm)

  • ALSO TOMORROW (Saturday, 12 May) – Durham Gin: Taste locally-made Durham gin, vodka and liqueurs
  • Saturday, 19 May – Consett Ale Works: Taste Consett’s classic ales, as well as their newly launched beers
  • Friday, 25 May – Lisbon Wines: Taste our small producer Portuguese wines with Victor
  • Saturday, 26 May – Hogarth Honey: Taste Spring 2018 honey and meet 20,000 bees who helped to make it
  • Saturday, 26 May – Brinkburn Street Brewery: Taste beers from one of the closest breweries to our shop
  • Saturday, 9 June – Twice Brewed: Taste Bardon Mill-brewed beers, including their ‘Ale Caesar’ amber
  • Saturday, 16 June – Firebrick Brewery: Taste Blaydon-brewed beers, including ‘Elder Statesman’ bitter for the perfect Father’s Day gift
  • Saturday, 16 June – Fat Lass Jams: Taste Bridget’s locally made jams and preserves, including her ‘Newkie Brown’ chutney.

Masons Gin Yorkshire craft gin at mmm…

Masons Gin Yorkshire tea, original and lavender gins at mmm...

mmm… and glug… is hosting a free Masons Gin tasting on Friday, 11 May (from 4pm to 7pm) so customers can taste their award-winning Yorkshire-distilled gins.

Masons wanted to create a taste that wasn’t just your run of the mill, off the shelf, generic gin.

Masons Gin dry Yorkshire gin logoRecipe after recipe was rejected in the search for a gin they felt deserved to be called Masons Yorkshire Gin.

Distilled in Masons’ copper alembic stills “Steve’ & “Leftie” in 200 litre batches, each 70cl bottle bears its own handwritten batch and bottle number.

With its traditional slow distillation method, pure Yorkshire water and just the right balance of juniper, citrus elements and secret botanical ratio they created a distinctly unique gin  – the first gin distilled in Yorkshire.

What we will be tasting at mmm… and glug… this Friday

  • Mason’s Yorkshire Tea Gin – 20cl and 70cl bottles
  • Lavender Gin – 20cl and 70cl bottles
  • The original Masons Dry Yorkshire Gin – 20cl and 70cl bottles
  • Limited edition peppered pear gin – 70cl bottle.

Want to know more about Masons Gin?

More tasting events at mmm… and glug… (all from 1pm)

  • Saturday, 12 May – Parlour Made: Taste award-winning local cheeses, including Durham Camembert
  • Saturday, 12 May – Durham Gin: Taste locally-made Durham gin, vodka and liqueurs
  • Saturday, 19 May – Consett Ale Works: Taste Consett’s classic ales, as well as their newly launched beers
  • Friday, 25 May – Lisbon Wines: Taste our small producer Portuguese wines with Victor
  • Saturday, 26 May – Hogarth Honey: Taste Spring 2018 honey and meet 20,000 bees who helped to make it
  • Saturday, 26 May – Brinkburn Street Brewery: Taste beers from one of the closest breweries to our shop
  • Saturday, 9 June – Twice Brewed: Taste Bardon Mill-brewed beers, including their ‘Ale Caesar’ amber
  • Saturday, 16 June – Firebrick Brewery: Taste Blaydon-brewed beers, including ‘Elder Statesman’ bitter for the perfect Father’s Day gift
  • Saturday, 16 June – Fat Lass Jams: Taste Bridget’s locally made jams and preserves, including her ‘Newkie Brown’ chutney.

Opal Sunshine tasting at mmm… and glug…

mmm… and glug… is hosting a free tasting on Saturday, 5 May with Opal Sunshine, so customers can taste her hot, fresh and zingy pepper sauces.

Opal Ward is Belizean – and her beloved Belize is her spiritual home, her roots and her inspiration for cooking.

Belize is such a beautiful country. with its pristine lush natural terrain, extensive marine wonders and its diversity.

As the only English speaking country in South America, the Caribbean Sea rests to the East, Mexico to the North and Guatemala to the South and West.

With a population of approximately 368,000 (tiny right!), it stretches just 174 miles long and 68 miles wide.

Opal Sunshine hot sauces at mmm… and glug…

It was about a year ago when Opal was at a food festival selling her Belizean tamales, and instead of buying a shop bought hot sauce she decided to make her own.

Opal started with the ‘Original Hot Sauce’, which took a lot of time and testing (and tasting).

Initially, she took a family recipe and experimented to create a balance of heat and more importantly flavour.

From the original came the ‘Lime-anero’, a heavily infused lime flavoured pepper sauce with plenty of heat and full of flavour.

The mildest of them followed – Opal’s ‘Mayan Mango’. a fusion of mango, lime and ginger – great flavours which fuse beautifully together.

A sweet, fresh milder sauce. Yet still hot.

Want to know more about Opal Sunshine?

More tasting events at mmm… and glug… (all from 1pm unless otherwise stated)

  • Friday, 11 May – 40 Kola: Taste the new north east made ‘proper’ Kola (11.30am to 3pm)
  • Friday, 11 May – Masons Gin: Taste Yorkshire-distilled tea and lavender gins (4pm to 7pm)
  • Saturday, 12 May – Parlour Made: Taste award-winning local cheeses, including Durham Camembert
  • Saturday, 12 May – Durham Gin: Taste locally-made Durham gin, vodka and liqueurs
  • Saturday, 19 May – Consett Ale Works: Taste Consett’s classic ales, as well as their newly launched beers
  • Friday, 25 May – Lisbon Wines: Taste our small producer Portuguese wines with Victor.

Sign up for news about our food, drink and tasting events …

Treboom Brewery tasting at mmm… and glug…

Treboom Brewery at mmm and glug

mmm… and glug… is hosting a free tasting on Saturday, 5 May with Treboom Brewery, so customers can taste the brewery’s award-winning beers.

Treboom was established in Shipton-by-Beningbrough near York early in 2012 by John Lewis and Jane Blackman.

John worked as a research scientist but hung up his lab coat to pursue his dream of producing great beers, while Jane, a practising ceramicist brings a creative side to beer making.

John and Jane wanted a name that showed they were going to make a big splash – a grand entrance – and what better way than by a drum roll? TrrrBOOM!

They, like everyone at mmm… and glug… want to bang the drum for great beer.

What we sell at mmm… and glug…

Yorkshire Sparkle – 4% ABV 

John and Jane have their son to thank for the name Yorkshire Sparkle.

It perfectly describes this Really Pale Ale, clear and bright with refreshing grapefruit flavours and hints of tropical fruits.

It surely is a moreish pint.

Kettle Drum – 4.3% ABV 

That huge drum at the back of the orchestra, the kettle drum, is the inspiration for our best bitter.

With great presence and robust flavours, it really bangs the drum for beer.

Copper coloured with a distinct fruity flavour from Cascade hops.

Baron Saturday – 5.2% ABV (Bottle conditioned) 

Dark and mysterious, Baron Saturday captured Treboom’s imagination.

This voodoo spirit likes his followers to leave small gifts of cigars or peanuts.

John and Jane think this strong dark porter would be his perfect pint. Brewed with five different malts it has hints of coffee, chocolate and liquorice.

Myricale – 5% ABV

Bringing an old recipe bang up to date this brew uses Bog Myrtle (Myrica gale), an ingredient used in beer in medieval times before hops became popular.

Treboom made it into a delicious wheat beer allowing the gingery herb-like qualities of this remarkable plant to sing through.

They also brew this beer to support the work of the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust and 5p per bottle is donated to them.

Hop Britannia – 5% ABV

A fanfare for the power and might of British hops.

This strong pale ale is brewed entirely with hops grown in the British Isles.

Bramling Cross, Pioneer and Northdown varieties are combined to give a full-bodied, tasty, hoppy beer.

NEW: Trommel lager – 4.2% ABV 

Treboom’s cask-conditioned version of a lager.

By using lager malt, German Hallertau and Tettnang hops and brewing at a lower temperature than their traditional ales Treboom has made a fresh crisp satisfying lager.

We will have newly-canned Trommel lager at mmm… and glug… on Saturday, 5 May.

Want to know more about Treboom Brewery?

More tasting events at mmm… and glug… (all from 1pm unless otherwise stated)

  • Saturday, 5 May – Opal Sunshine: Taste Opal’s zingy, fresh Belizean-inspired pepper sauces
  • Friday, 11 May – 40 Kola: Taste the new north east made ‘proper’ Kola (11.30am to 3pm)
  • Friday, 11 May – Masons Gin: Taste Yorkshire-distilled tea and lavender gins (4pm to 7pm)
  • Saturday, 12 May – Parlour Made: Taste award-winning local cheeses, including Durham Camembert
  • Saturday, 12 May – Durham Gin: Taste locally-made Durham gin, vodka and liqueurs
  • Saturday, 19 May – Consett Ale Works: Taste Consett’s classic ales, as well as their newly launched beers
  • Friday, 25 May – Lisbon Wines: Taste our small producer Portuguese wines with Victor.

Sign up for news about our food, drink and tasting events …