South African supermarket Woolworths has released two new products under its Easy to Cook brand—salmon portions with a soy, honey, and ginger glaze, and calamari rings with a zesty lemon and garlic butter—using Sira-Cook™ Smart-Release™ packaging, a dual-compartment microwave bag that is said to cook food to perfection in minutes.
“The packaging and product fit like a glove, it is perfect for absolute convenience and no-fuss cooking,” says Gavin Anhaeusser, product developer with Woolworths. “It is quick to cook, a flavorful end product, with no fishy smell in the kitchen. The fact that the product is sealed in the bag means no yield loss and adds flavor to the end product.
“The concept and convenience of Smart-Release is great, especially for single customers. It's time-saving and energy-saving if you are only cooking for one or two people. But more importantly, the food quality is excellent, it is quick, and it is really simple.”
With Sira-Cook Smart-Release, food and sauces are kept separate in the packaging, sealed into two compartments. The central dividing seal has been designed to rupture in a controlled way, allowing the mixing of the contents of the two compartments. A second vent in the main compartment then opens, maintaining pressure in the bag.
Sira-Cook Smart Release is recommended for a variety of foods, particularly seafood, “with perfect-tasting fish and sauce in just a matter of minutes thanks to the dual-vent technology,” says supplier Sirane.
“The venting seals on Sira-Cook Smart-Release can be tuned for retailers to meet the cooking requirements of any contents, be it seafood, poultry, or even desserts,” explains Ian Beardsall, Sirane director of product and process development.
Coldwater Seafood was one of the first companies to take up Smart-Release, with the packaging allowing fish dishes to be sold by retail giant Marks & Spencer. M&S has launched three Sira-Cook Smart-Release products to date under the tag line Quick To Cook, including Lochmuir Salmon with Watercress; Cod with Parsley; and Haddock Mornay.