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Eid Mubarak to all customers, friends and colleagues from everyone here at KQF

July 17, 2015 at 9:43 am

Eid wishes

This week around the world, we will join 1.8 billion Muslims celebrating the Islamic festival of Eid ul Fitr. Marking the completion of Ramadan, the Islamic month of fasting, it is a day of great joy and new beginnings. After Ramadan’s physical and spiritual challenges, Eid heralds a bright future bursting with hope and potential.

The festival is now upon us and with it comes a time to enjoy the company of family and friends – often accompanied by a celebratory meal.

Though all Muslims recognise this as a very special time of year and most mark it with a hearty family meal, preferred dishes vary by country and region. For example, families originating from Pakistan might opt for rice with meat, naan and curry, together with samosas, rolls and kebabs. Roast chicken is also very popular (after all, when isn’t it?) and the same can be said of chicken drumsticks and sweet Asian dishes like ras malai.

Whilst some of these may also be enjoyed by families with Indian origins, alternative national favourites include biryani, tandoori chicken and meat karahi. For dessert, homemade sweets, cakes and biscuits often appear on the table.

Variety, they say, is the spice of life and so, regardless of their ethnicity, most Muslims will tend to mix and match their ingredients, choosing chicken as the principal ingredient in one dish and then lamb or beef as the basis for another.

Every family has its cherished recipes for special occasions and, at a time such as this, we’d never presume to offer our own suggestions as an alternative. We’re sure you all have plans and favourite dishes that you’re looking forward to so, instead, we’ve kept ourselves busy by planning our EID sale in a way that we hope makes life easier for everyone.

All the major ingredients for home-cooked celebratory meals – tikka-cut chicken breast, diced lamb, beef cubes and many other fresh halal meat cuts – are included in our seasonal sale, and there are savings, too, on a range of convenience foods. Samosas, kebabs, polonies and burgers are just some of the many foods on special offer. The EID sale runs until 25th July 2015.

If you have a particular favourite dish for Eid al-Fitr, or if there’s an important ingredient that you’d like us to include in next year’s Ramadan sale, please do get in touch. We really welcome your feedback and we’ll always do our best to provide the foods that are of most value to you.

At this very special time, KQF wishes you a blessed and prosperous Eid, filled with brightness and joy in the coming days.

From all the team at KQF, Eid Mubarak!

Tasty seasonal party foods for Eid celebration

July 10, 2015 at 12:43 pm

buffet-315691_1280With Eid fast approaching, we thought we’d offer some tips and suggestions for some tasty seasonal party foods.

If you’re having friends and family round for the evening, the last thing you’ll want to do will be to spend the whole time in the kitchen. Parties mean people – so what’s the best way of making sure you get to spend the maximum possible time with them?

Planning is important.  Not everyone will arrive at the same time but you can heat up the oven in advance and prepare a small quantity of hot nibbles to welcome your first guests. Chicken sticks or nuggets, cocktail sausages and similar fun-sized bites are ideal because they can be placed in a bowl – with cocktail sticks for easy picking – alongside dips and cold snacks such as nuts, crisps and crudités.  You can also prepare a small quantity of samosas and rolls, of course. Leave the oven on and prepare additional batches as you go along. This means latecomers can still be greeted with something warm and tasty.

The oven is your friend on a night like this because, provided you keep a watchful eye on the timings, it can get on with most of the hard work whilst you mingle and entertain. (That’s the planning again.) In addition to the initial snacks, you can also use it to prepare more substantial items such as pizzas, ready cooked kebabs, marinated meats and pies.

A mix of hot and cold foods will help to keep your workload down. Cold sliced meats, together with halal cheeses and a nice mixed salad can all be prepared in advance and then left in the fridge until the appropriate time. Breads are another key element that can be heated in the oven and they can provide at least some of the filler without demanding a lot of your time.

Of course being Eid, to all this you might well want to add a few signature touches of your own – a curry or a special rice dish, for example – but by keeping everything else simple and low maintenance, you’ll have more time to concentrate on making it a really striking centrepiece. KQF Chicken cut curry pieces can easily be used in dishes such as curries, stews and layered biryani dishes.

If Beef is on your menu, try KQF Minced Beef which is lean, flavoursome and exceptionally versatile. Seasoned and shaped, it makes excellent beef kofta, but it can also be used to make wonderful savoury fillings or used in traditional minced beef curries.

Or if you prefer a Lamb dish on Eid, KQF Lamb Curry Mix Meat would be ideal. It is cut into handy, bite-sized pieces that are ideal for curries and other family favourites.

Last but not least, no celebration is complete without a sweet dish. For kids, preparing homemade biscuits and cakes would be the most popular item. Traditional sweet dishes are a great hit. So why not rustle up with Barfi, Gulab Jamun (a ball shaped milk based dessert immersed in a sugar syrup), and ras malai (dish prepared with milk). They are all time favourites and will keep everyone happy.

We wish you and your family a happy Eid in advance and wish you every success.

Cricket Sponsorship 2015

June 26, 2015 at 9:07 am

This summer, we were once again delighted to be the official sponsor of the Blackburn-based Bharuch Cricket Club which recently began its 2015 season.

The Club, which competes in the Blackburn and District Cricket League, will once again be wearing the KQF logo emblazoned on its whites and caps.

“We’re very pleased to be sponsoring the team again this year,” said managing director, Faruk Vali. “We first supported the team in 2014 and we’re more than happy to continue the relationship in 2015. Everyone at KQF would like to wish the squad the greatest success; it would be great to see a player in a KQF shirt lifting this season’s trophy.”

Here is the highlights from last year.

KQF Bharuch Cricket club

Four Summertime Uses for Halal Macon Rashers

June 12, 2015 at 11:32 am

Macon-rashers-launch

You may recall that when we launched KQF’s Halal Macon Rashers, we offered some serving suggestions (see blog post.) Now that summer’s well on its way and we can once again think about evening meals in the garden, we thoughts we’d suggest some further uses for this very versatile ingredient.

1 Luxury burger topping

Barbecued burgers are great but they can be given an added touch of luxury if you add a smoked Macon Rasher to the mix. The smoky flavour of the Rashers goes really well with an outdoor, flame-grilled burger. Remember, though, KQF Macon Rashers are sold ready cooked, so you only need to heat them through; a few seconds on the BBQ should be all they’ll need.

2 Summer salads

Cut into small pieces, our Halal Macon Rashers lend flavour and substance to all kind of salads. From a simple mix of green leaves to more hearty dishes such as couscous, rice salads, bulgur wheat and pasta.

3 Party snacks

Ready cooked and delicious whether served hot or cold, our Rashers are great for wrapping round cheese, halal sausages and other party treats.

4 Toast topping

When you’re sitting out in the evening and the temperature begins to drop, it’s sometimes nice to be able to rustle up something quick, warm and delicious. Everyone knows how easy it is to make cheese on toast, but add in a few small pieces of Macon Rasher and an everyday snack starts to get really interesting. The smoky flavour works so beautifully with cheese that it really has to be worth a try.

Moroccan-style burgers and couscous

June 5, 2015 at 9:20 am

Our Gourmet Moroccan Beef Burgers have proved to be one of our most popular recent introductions so, with barbecue season now upon us, we thought we’d suggest a delicious North African-themed accompaniment.

Couscous is a very well known dish that is made from durum wheat and originates from North Africa. It can be bought in many forms, including ready-cooked, and it’s great for soaking up flavour. The most common form is the quick-cook variety which can be cooked by adding boiling water or by simmering gently in a pan. Cooking times vary, so follow the supplier’s instructions.

In this example, we’re using a fairly simple recipe, but you can enliven it with your own additions – peas, beans, raisins, extra spices – whatever you fancy.

To serve approximately four people, you will need:

couscous-15-E200g couscous (not ready cooked)

  • 250ml of chicken stock
  • 100ml olive oil
  • 2 lemons
  • Salt and black pepper
  • Handful of fresh mint

Method:

Note that this recipe can be served hot or cold, so you can prepare it in advance, depending on how you want to serve it.

  • Heat the chicken stock in a pan (you can use vegetable stock if you prefer)
  • Put the couscous in a large bowl.
  • Take the zest and juice of the two lemons.
  • When the stock is boiling, pour it over the couscous
  • Stir in the olive oil, lemon juice and zest.
  • Cover the bowl with cling-film and give the couscous time to absorb the stock. Cooking times vary but it will usually take around 5 to 10 minutes.
  • When the liquid has been absorbed, stir the couscous with a fork to make it light and fluffy.
  • Season to taste.
  • Add the finely chopped mint and any extra chosen ingredients – tomatoes, peas, finely chopped peppers, raisins etc. – and lightly fork into the mix.

Healthy, delicious and ideal for summers in the garden, couscous makes the perfect accompaniment to KQF’s Moroccan-style Gourmet Beef Burgers.

AHF visit – In their own words…

May 29, 2015 at 10:22 am

In a recent post, we reported that we’d had a welcome return visit by members of the Abu Hanifah Foundation Cub Scouts Group – or, more precisely, AHF Beavers. We’ve already spoken about it but we thought you’d like to hear the views of the boys and girls themselves. After their visit, they very kindly sent us all sorts of letters of thanks – even some pictures. We’ve listed a few examples below.

“I thought that the day was so amazing. They make so many burgers and sausages in a day. I really enjoyed making and eating the sausages.”
Hafsa

“I wish  we could have breakfast  like this every Sunday!”

Hamza-Yusuf

Hakim and Zaki sent us a lovely drawing, which describes the fun they had.

AHF visit - KQF factoryIn it, they note that their favourite part was the food tasting – saying: “I loved the taste of the KQF chicken and I’m sure all the other cubs/ scouts enjoyed it too! I also liked the part when we saw how KQF made the delicious sausages… The overall experience was outstanding!”

Another of the visitors, Mohammed sent us a thoughtful report, which described all that he’d done during his stay with us. He noted how the children had all put on hygienic protective clothing and that they’d learned a great deal about the production process. He wrote: “We saw men making sausages… one of the machines could make 3,800 burgers in ten minutes!”

We also received text messages from parents describing how interesting and enjoyable trip their children had at KQF factory. The message says  – “My son really enjoyed his trip at KQF factory. The visit has converted not only their son but entire family to eat delicious sausages for the breakfast. We will definitely buy them again and again”.

We’re very glad that the children enjoyed their trip. It was a pleasure to welcome such bright and appreciative visitors, and everyone at KQF looks forward to seeing our friends from AHF again.

Texan-style burgers with red pepper salsa

May 13, 2015 at 11:49 am

Weighing 110g each, our Jumbo Texan Beef Burgers are very satisfying and considerably larger than ordinary high street burgers. They’re also made with a much higher meat content so they’re a great choice when you want something special for a family barbecue.

The Jumbo range includes Great British and Texan-style quarter-pounders. The difference is that the British version is simply seasoned with salt and pepper, whereas the Texan burger, with all its Mexican influences, is enlivened with a tasty blend of onion, peppers, green chillies and miscellaneous herbs and spices.

This barbecue suggestion builds on the peppery theme with a spicy salsa relish that makes a great accompaniment to a meaty summertime treat.

To serve four people, you will need:

Red pepper Salsa dip

  • Half a red pepper
  • Half a yellow pepper
  • One large tomato
  • A quarter of a cucumber
  • A quarter of an onion
  • One lemon, a clove of garlic
  • I teaspoon of paprika
  • 20ml olive oil (approx 1 tablespoon)
  • Salt and pepper & fresh chilli to taste

The method really couldn’t be easier. Just chop the vegetables, add the zest and juice of the lemon and mix in the other ingredients. Add the seasoning, spices, garlic and chilli to taste.

The result is a delicious, fresh and feisty salsa dressing that also works well as a fantastic dip for breads and tortilla chips.

 

Thai-style burgers and rice noodle salad

May 5, 2015 at 11:48 am

Summer is on its way and, with a host of new halal foods to offer, we thought we’d take the opportunity to suggest a few ideas for a great family barbecue. A straightforward burger in a bun is always a winner, of course, but sometimes it’s nice to try something different.

Our new Exotic range seems like the obvious place to start for some interesting new suggestions, so in this post, we’ll look at our new Exotic Thai-style gourmet burgers and how you can make them the centrepiece of a delicious summertime treat. The burgers in the Exotic range are made with HMC-certified halal beef and they weight 220g (half a pound) so they really are very substantial and satisfying. You certainly shouldn’t need to go back for a second one…

BBQ idea: Thai-style burgers and rice noodle salad

The Exotic Thai-style halal beef burger can be served with all sorts of different accompaniments, from a conventional burger bun to the more culturally-authentic steamed rice or noodles. This recipe idea uses rice noodles, which are quick and easy to cook and can be served hot or cold.

Beef-ExoticBurger-ThaiTo serve approximately four people, you will need:

  • 200g of dried rice noodles (flat variety)
  • 2 large carrots
  • 1 cucumber
  • 1 large wine tomato
  • 2 limes
  • 1 handful of fresh coriander
  • 20 ml (2 dessert spoons) of ginger syrup
  • Fresh chilli and spring onion to taste

Rice noodles are most often sold dry and pre-packed and although they are usually very quick to cook, their cooking times vary. Typically, to reduce cooking time, they can be soaked in cold water before steaming or boiling. Follow the instructions on the pack.

If you plan to make this a cold salad, then you can cook the noodles in advance, but if so, keep them in a sealed container so they don’t start to dry out. If you want to serve them hot, then schedule the following preparations to that the noodles are ready at the same time as the burgers.

Method:

Rice-noodle-salad

  • Peel the carrots and grate them into a large bowl.
  • Finely dice or grate the cucumber into the same bowl.
  • Put big chunks of wine tomato into the bowl.
  • Add the zest and juice of the two limes.
  • Add the ginger syrup (You can buy jars of stem ginger in syrup. Use the thinly cut stem ginger, too, if you wish.)
  • Add the coriander leaves, finely chopped.
  • Finely chop the spring onions and red chilli, and add to taste.
  • Add the cooked rice noodles and mix thoroughly.

Fresh, zingy and packed with vitamins, these noodles make a great accompaniment to KQF’s Thai-style Gourmet Beef Burgers, but they also work well with plainer meats such as barbecued chicken or even hard boiled eggs.

Leicester Roadshow – Gourmet Range

April 28, 2015 at 11:24 am

In the food business, getting direct customer feedback is extremely important, particularly when you’re launching products such as our new Exotic range of gourmet half-pounder beef burgers. That’s why we were very pleased to work with one of our long-standing clients to organise a customer roadshow in Leicester.

Held on Saturday 25th April between 12 noon and 4pm the event took place at the premises of Mr Burger, a well-respected retailer and wholesaler of quality frozen foods.  We took the five variants of the Exotic burgers and staff gave out free samples for shoppers to try.

Leicester-Roadshow-Gourmet-burgers

The five flavours in the Exotic range include:

  • Mexican
  • Moroccan
  • Portuguese Piri Piri
  • South African
  • Thai

One of the most interesting findings was that there appear to be regional differences in terms of customer preference. From taster sessions in Lancashire, at the KQF Superstore and elsewhere, the most popular flavours have tended to be the Thai-style and the Moroccan beef burgers. In Leicester, however, more customers opted for the spicier flavours of the South African and Mexican varieties.

It’s good to see that all the new flavour blends have been met with a positive reaction but it’s still too early to see whether a firm national favourite is emerging. More free taster sessions will probably take place over the summer, so if you’d like to take part, please check our Twitter and Facebook pages for details of forthcoming events.

The New KQF Jumbo Range

April 2, 2015 at 1:18 pm

We recently announced our rising excitement about the launch of our new KQF Exotic range – high quality, half pound beef burgers available in five ‘world flavours’. The new products landed in the shops on Saturday 21st March.

Their introduction has prompted a ‘reshuffle’ of our existing range of Premium quality halal burgers and one of the results of this has been the launch of our new ‘Jumbo‘ range. This combines KQF’s existing Texan burgers with a new ‘Great British’ range, in which the focus is on high quality meat, simply seasoned without the use of herbs or spices. Weighing 110g each, the burgers are available in beef, chicken and lamb.

KQf Jumbo range of burgers

Weighing in at around twice the size of a standard high street burger, they also have a higher lean meat content. They are designed to allow families to enjoy a top quality burger at a fraction of the cost of an ordinary take-out.

Made with an authentic blend of Indian herbs and spices, KQF Jumbo burgers are perfect for parties and family occasions. Available in packs of 4, they can be can be grilled, barbecued or pan-fried.

Find them on the KQF website in the Frozen/Premium Burgers section.