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Blasta Delights journey with ginger inspired goodies started back in 2016 in Canada when Áine Ní Bhraoin researched how to make her own crystallised ginger. It was not what she expected as her own homemade crystallised ginger had a significantly bigger burst of flavour than what was being manufactured on a larger scale on the shelves. Anyone that tasted her crystallised ginger was in awe of its ginger kick, especially those who were outdoors a lot. It gave them a nice warming feeling that lasted in the colder Canadian weather. Áine has always had a deep interest in trying her hand at anything culinary and is not scared to try anything once, which has given her great interest and confidence in developing her ginger flavours.
Moving forward to 2019 and being back in Ireland, Áine started looking into creating a business out of using ginger as her main ingredient and bringing her products to market. With a better knowledge of the food business scene, Áine explored refining her end product and gathered more information about the production of ginger and how sustainable it was. As growers of organic ginger in the selva alta or high jungle of eastern Peru, they intercrop the plants with coffee plants boosting biodiversity which helps to control pests. Up until then she had been using Chinese ginger but saw how the organic Peruvian ginger gave her products a far deeper ginger flavour. It is 3 times smaller than other ginger from other countries but it still has a stronger spice level than other ginger imports due to its higher oil and fibre content.
With wanting to take sustainable steps within her business, Áine wants to use as much of the ginger in her ginger syrup, any scraps of ginger skin that Áine has leftover is added into her ginger syrup solution to give it a deeper and natural ginger flavour. Afterwards, these scraps are then added to the soil of Áine’s ginger plants, which she grows. She wants to see if she could partially supply her business with her own ginger in order to take further sustainable steps within her business.
With Áine’s ginger syrup on the shelves all year round, she also produces seasonally flavoured syrups which pair well with ginger, like ginger and rhubarb, ginger and apple, ginger and pumpkin and also ginger and carrot. She sources her other ingredients from local organic producers where possible, meaning her ingredients are as fresh and nutritious as possible.
With her business ideas in the pipeline, Áine just needed to find her next port of call in Ireland and has settled in Glenbeigh, Co.Kerry since early 2021.
Having a great connection with her local LEO office, they have been able to provide invaluable resources for Áine to have a better understanding of running her own business. Having been on the SuperValu Food Academy has sharpened Áine’s business skills and has helped her to develop her wide range of ginger inspired goodies even further.