A Taste of Somalia

by HEAB on September 15, 2011

Hello my almond butter loving friends. If you're new to HEAB, you may like to subscribe to my RSS feed or receive my posts via email. Thanks for reading!

So, I haven’t been doing many product reviews on the blog lately, and for the most part, when companies contact me, I tell them no thanks. However if an interesting product comes along, then I accept as I want to share it with all of you, especially if it’s good. (I’ll share if it’s bad too). After all, I learned about many of my favorite products from blogs. So, when the folks at Sadia’s Sauce contacted me about trying their products, I perused the website: Sadia is from Somalia, and using an old family recipe created her line of hot sauces back in 2007. After receiving positive feedback from friends and family, Sadia applied for and received a small business loan from the City of Minneapolis and the African Development Center of Minnesota to help realize her dream, and began selling at local farmer’s markets and co-ops. Sadia’s all-natural and locally made sauces come in hot, mild, or sweet, are free of preservatives, and sweetened with a unique combination of dates and tamarind.

Yes, I’d like to try your sauces, thank you. Please send. -Heather

The day they arrived, I tried both the sweet and mild atop a bowl of beef and veggie stir-fry.

Sadia'sSauce.psd

SadiaStirFry.psd

I am not a huge fan of heat, and even the mild has quite a kick. Delicious, but hot. Personally, I prefer the sweet.

Screen shot 2011-09-15 at 3.23.38 PM.png

All three sauces are made with the same ingredients, and I’m guessing the sweet simply contains a little more date and a little less cayenne. Next up, I tried Sadia’s recipe for marinated chicken (sent with my sauces) with the mild, and enjoyed it over a bowl of coconut millet (millet steamed in rice cooker with coconut milk) and spinach.

Sadia'sChicken2.psd
Sadia'sChicken.psd

Yum, but honestly, my favorite part of this meal was the millet and sauce, no chicken necessary. The combo of coconut + Sadia’s Sauce was so good!

So, I’ve decided I like the mild sauce, but I’m kind of obsessed with the sweet sauce. For those of you scared of savory oats, beware…

Sadia'sSavoryOats.psd

The above bowl contained today’s lunch: oat bran topped with an egg, goat cheese, and Sadia’s Mild Sauce. Nothing to fear – really, you need to try this.

Dear Sadia, I love your sauces. Thank you for sharing a taste of your homeland with me. Sincerely, Heather

Sadia’s Sauces are currently sold at these Twin Cities co-ops and markets and are also available online.

P.S. I have yet to open the hot sauce…kind of scared.

{ 50 comments }

Holly @ The Runny Egg September 15, 2011 at 4:02 pm

Well geeze I live in the Twin Cities so I should check these out!

HEAB September 15, 2011 at 10:09 pm

Holly,
Yes, you should as they were delicious. Hope you find the sauces soon! :)

Shelby September 15, 2011 at 4:16 pm

I love anything with heat so these are on my grocery list!

Ty September 15, 2011 at 4:18 pm

Ooooh I love sauces. I like heat too. And tamarind. So this sounds really good. I might have to buy some online!

Sylvia @ LifeIsGoodWithFood September 15, 2011 at 4:59 pm

Ohhh, I love hot sauce! In fact, that was how I got my friend’s boyfriend to enjoy eating broccoli. I whispered, Psssttttt* Just put hot sauce on it ;)

STUFT Mama September 15, 2011 at 5:01 pm

I’ve always wanted to try coconut milk in the rice cooker and I love sauces. Your bowls look delicious. Even the second one- I’ve never tried egg that way before. :)
Don’t be scared of the hot sauce! :) (I add hot sauce to pretty much everything.)

HEAB September 15, 2011 at 10:09 pm

STUFT, do it – so easy. I just threw in 1 cup dry millet, 1 can light coconut milk, and 1 can of water. It turned out perfect!

clare September 15, 2011 at 5:13 pm

Yay, local to me! Thanks for the review and where to find Heather!

HEAB September 15, 2011 at 10:08 pm

Clare,
You’re welcome!

katie @KatieDid September 15, 2011 at 5:36 pm

funny, my taste buds seem to be in a transition lately and I’ve been digging spicy foods. Now not tooooo spicy but I’ve been using hot sauce, eating cayenne spiced pb by the spoonful and enjoyed a spicy curry meal last night.
I might make savory oats for dinner tonight, it’s that kind of rainy evening :)

HEAB September 15, 2011 at 10:08 pm

Katie,
Now, cayenne spiced pb I can do, and I do love curry, just not super super hot. Have you ever had wing sauce – adds just enough heat but not too much.

Averie @ Love Veggies and Yoga September 15, 2011 at 5:56 pm

I grew up in Minneapolis and there is such a HUGE!!! Somali population there.

And the coops you linked to and stores that you can buy it in the Mpls area…wow, trip down memory lane for me.

The sauce sounds great and I love the story and message behind it…and it’s nostalgic for me thinking about all the Somali restaurants, families, and people I grew up with and alongside in Mpls!

Rebecca @ How the Cookies Crumble September 15, 2011 at 6:21 pm

I love sauces and condiments and I *LOVE* hot sauce! I bet these are great!!

Kiran @ KiranTarun.com September 15, 2011 at 6:32 pm

I am intrigued by hot sauce. Ok, I love hot sauce! And these sauces does look delish. I love the story behind it. Thanks for sharing Heather :)

kayla September 15, 2011 at 6:42 pm

Did I just order all three of these? Might’ve…my boyfriend is East African and I’m sooooo excited to try them!! Plus I just love hot sauce. Thanks!

HEAB September 15, 2011 at 10:06 pm

Kayla,
Oh good – so happy to hear it. The sauces are delicious, and what a nice surprise for your boyfriend. I think you will both love them!

lindsay September 15, 2011 at 6:46 pm

well I think you picked a good product to review. Does it come with your cooking? If so, sign me up!

HEAB September 15, 2011 at 10:05 pm

Lindsay,
Unfortunately not, but my cooking is so basic these days. Anyone could do it – promise! Oh and guess what? Ordered some Marmite from Amazon this week. FINALLY!

lindsay September 15, 2011 at 10:25 pm

yea! I should have sent you some a long time ago. Did you order English kind or the austrailan kind? one is a paste, the other is more a thick syrup. Either way, can’t wait for you to try. Hope you like it! No pressure.
;)

Samantha September 15, 2011 at 6:55 pm

Oh I’d love the hot…the more heat the better! When we go for Thai, I always ask for a 7/8 on a 10 scale. YUM! But the sweet + coconut millet sounds awfully good too. Fingers crossed there’s int’l shipping. I love that you share your loves on here, it’s really opened up my experimentation in the kitchen.

HEAB September 15, 2011 at 10:04 pm

Oh Sam, I’m so happy to hear that as sometimes I feel like a product whore. Please tell me if the reviews ever get annoying.

J3nn (Jenn's Menu and Lifestyle Blog) September 15, 2011 at 7:40 pm

Those sauces sound good. I like that they’re low in sodium! That’s a major deal breaker for me.

Love that blue bowl! So pretty.

HEAB September 15, 2011 at 10:03 pm

Thanks Jenn, my mom bought it for me years ago, and it’s starting to crack. So sad as it’s one of my favorites!

Stephanie @ extremebalance.net/blog September 15, 2011 at 8:02 pm

Brazil is without heat. In terms of food, that is—if you need some reinforcement on the hot stuff, I’M YOUR GUY! :D

And I seriously, seriously love Ethiopian food—I’m guessing it’s not hugely different from Somalian, so now I’m about the most excited thing on the planet.

HEAB September 15, 2011 at 10:02 pm

Stephanie,
Oh my gosh, Ethiopian is my favorite. LOVE LOVE LOVE Injera!

Baking N Books September 15, 2011 at 8:20 pm

I find mild salsa to be a bit too spicy for me (but I love it) – so hot would probably kill me ;)

Looks great with the egg combo. Is it high in sodium?

michelle September 15, 2011 at 8:32 pm

I can’t believe I never thought of this way to eat oat bran. I know what I’m having for lunch tomorrow!

Hannah September 15, 2011 at 8:50 pm

I’ve only ever failed at cooking millet – it always turns out vaguely crunchy and starchy. Must have another go, with coconut deliciousness!

HEAB September 15, 2011 at 10:01 pm

Hannah,
Yes, you must. Do you have a rice cooker. I have a super cheapo one I bought about 10 years ago for $20, and it works great. Pour in millet, add coconut milk, hit on. :)

Hannah September 15, 2011 at 10:05 pm

No, I don’t. My Mum is so incredibly anti-appliance that she’s never allowed a rice cooker in the house, and now I’ve moved out I’ve never wanted one as I rarely eat rice! It does sound convenient though…

kathleen @ the daily crumb September 15, 2011 at 8:52 pm

all three sound fantastic! i love that you support the small business owners, will have to check out the product line :)

Maria (Maria Makes Muffins) September 15, 2011 at 10:00 pm

I am super excited to look for this at our local markets. Love that this product is local to me. :)

Katie September 15, 2011 at 10:01 pm

I love hot and spicy anything…if you’re looking to get rid of the hot sauce. ;)

Emmy (Wine and Butter) September 16, 2011 at 1:22 am

The coconut bowl looks BEAUTIFUL!!! I also have some millet (inspired by you!!!) and some coconut milk (because I ALWAYS do) so I might try to whip some of that up!!! xox

MizFit September 16, 2011 at 5:21 am

I would be scared too, but I manage to live in Texas and avoid hot sauces entirely so…

HEAB September 16, 2011 at 6:33 am

Miz,
No guac OR hot sauce?!? I’m surprised they haven’t kicked you out yet. ;)

Angela @ PattycakesnPancakes September 16, 2011 at 8:37 am

Oh these look really delish! Dates and cayenne.. yum! I really want to try them. Thanks for sharing.

Neena September 16, 2011 at 9:05 am

I am loving your coconut millet recipe! I have to confess that I have a bag of millet that I’ve been eyeing with great suspicion for a while. Those little tiny balls (teehee) freak me out a bit. But I also have a can of coconut milk and a rice cooker, so this recipe may be the magic combo for this evening’s dinner!

Casey @ Pocket Full of Sunshine September 16, 2011 at 11:30 am

Those sound so good! I love sauces and dips, etc—I basically don’t eat pizza unless I have something spicy or tomatoey to dip it in. :)

Riss September 16, 2011 at 5:35 pm

Mmmm… all of that looks sooooo good! You have me SOLD on the oatbran bowl with egg and goat cheese. Sounds divine.

And I just love the back-story of Sadia’s Sauce! Wish they sold it here in Atlanta!

The Delicate Place September 17, 2011 at 8:59 am

mmmm i really love north african food and i have a wee obsession with things anywhere near moroccan spiced or influenced. i love that dates are used to sweeten instead of HFCS or other sugar bombs. i’ve been using less salt these days and really amping up flavors with spices and various sauces and i also like to burn my mouth off when eating foods with a bit of a kick! bring on the cayenne!

Liz @ iheartvegetables September 17, 2011 at 10:28 am

Yum!!! Those both sound so good!!

Cameo September 17, 2011 at 11:04 am

I LOVE hot sauce. Must try this one! Your recipes look delicious, can I come over?

melody polakow: Vegan for 3.33 a day September 17, 2011 at 11:28 am

OMG, I want to try that sauce so bad!.. the hotter the better.. and savory oats.. oh yes please!

Emily September 17, 2011 at 5:19 pm

I am so excited by this post because 1) I’m going home (aka Minneapolis) on Wednesday so I’ll buy some AND it’s sold just blocks from my parents house! 2) I LOVE new sauces especially from different countries and 3) I am always trying to show my parents ways to add flavor without the fake gross ingredients!

GetSkinny GoVegan September 17, 2011 at 8:43 pm

Wow! Those look amazing!!!!

Naima November 19, 2013 at 4:12 pm

Hey Heather =)

whats your recipe for coconut millet?

thanks

Naima

HEAB November 19, 2013 at 7:37 pm

Hi Naima,
Super easy! I simply cooked the millet with canned coconut milk instead of water. I made mine in a rice cooker, but you can also prepare on stovetop. Just sub coconut milk for water and enjoy. :)

Naima November 20, 2013 at 4:51 pm

Hello, Heather.

So two cups of coconut milk as opposed to two cups of water? Just trying to be careful, im not too good with grains.. Your coconut millet looks soo yummy and by far the best of any millet recipes I’ve come across! You should post up the recipe step by step ;)

HEAB November 21, 2013 at 2:52 pm

Naima,
Yes, exactly. I believe I used canned light coconut milk, but you could also use full fat for a richer flavor/texture or something like So Delicious coconut milk beverage for a milder coconut flavor. It is a yummy method for making millet or any grain for that matter and so easy. I haven’t made it myself in a while – so, thanks for the reminder! :)

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