Monitoring product temperature during processing is vital to ensure optimum viscosity in Macphie's new Ku-li branded range of coulis, which are packaged in squeezy bottles for ease of use.
"We used to provide foodservice coulis in a pouch, but we looked at the competition and what our customers wanted from the product and it turned out that everyone who bought our coulis were transferring them from the pouch into squeezy bottles," says Macphie operations manager Drew Hamilton.
"We realised that we could do that for them, so we used a nozzle similar to a hotdog mustard dispenser and we chose a seven layer polypropylene Orion bottle from RPC Containers specifically designed for hot filling."
The new packaging meant that the production process needed adapting to maintain the product's optimum viscosity. "We couldn't afford to overcook the product," explains Hamilton, "so we made sure our equipment controlled the steam from the boiler as it entered the steam jacket to ensure that it stayed at an optimum temperature of 85°C."
He explains that temperature control is vital to the product's texture and appearance. "Once you overshoot the temperature the product loses flavour and the viscosity would go so that the product was too thick to use. Also, the colours could change, so raspberry red would go brown."
Available in raspberry, mango and blackcurrant flavours, the coulis' heating process guarantees that the fruits retain all of their natural flavours. "Because they're free from artificial colours, flavours, preservatives and contain less than 0.5% fat, they meet consumer demand for healthier options," claims Macphie.
The Ku-li range is suitable for a variety of sweet and savoury dishes. "Drizzle over starters, salads and desserts; use as an ingredient to make sorbets, crumbles or smoothies; use with meat to produce a jus or stir fries; or create artistic plate decorations - hearts, teardrops, zigzags, and spider webs - which can be prepared ahead of service and remain stable," says the company.
Macphie's marketing operations manager, Emma Watson, explains: "Our chefs are passionate about developing ever more exciting products to meet the needs of today's busy chefs.
"The Ku-li launch follows the success of Over The Top dessert toppings in squeezy bottles. Featuring a twist and turn nozzle, chefs can use their creative flair to produce very accurate plate decorations straight from the bottle. The contemporary packaging has been designed to reflect the simplicity by which professional results can be achieved."