Time-saving fresh pastes are this year’s must-have ingredient

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Time-saving fresh pastes are this year's must-have ingredient

Psst! We’ve found the ultimate ingredient for maximising flavour and minimising cooking time. Fresh pastes are key to making your favourite stews, curries and marinades with very little chopping involved. Why make your own wet masala paste or harissa paste from scratch when you can use store-bought versions that get the job done? How you use them is up to you, but we’re getting you started with hard-to-resist masala chips, a paneer curry that can rival any restaurants and harissa butter you’ll want to add to any meal.


Good food takes time, but when it comes to midweek cooking, you need dinner on the table in a flash. Enter Woolworths’ new fresh pastes inspired by flavours from around the globe: harissa (North Africa), masala (South Asia), sofrito (Mediterranean), and laksa (southeast Asia). They’re made using fresh ingredients to ensure maximum flavour and delicious aromas. Simply add a few tablespoons, or the whole tub, to ingredients such as coconut milk, stock, canned tomatoes and your favourite veg or protein, and dinner is ready to serve. These fresh pastes are also great to use as a base for curries, stews and soups, or even as a marinade.

Masala chip rolls

The only thing better than slap chips is slap chips doused in masala sauce. This recipe is inspired by Cape Town’s famous sandwich, the gatsby. Fry the masala fresh paste in a little oil to loosen the thick paste and toss with a large batch of slap chips. The masala paste features perfectly sautéed onions with warm spices, curry leaves, chilli and tomatoes that are cooked to form a spicy paste that you can use for curries, chutneys or a marinade. If you really want to cut corners, feel free to use Woolworths’ frozen oven-bake chips. But for the ultimate corner-store-inspired rolls, make your own chips from scratch.

Get the recipe for masala chips here.

Paneer masala curry

Creamy paneer curry is easy to make at home with Woolworths’ masala fresh paste. On days when you don’t have the time but have the cravings, this recipe will definitely keep you satisfied. You need just 3 ingredients to make this curry – yes, it’s that easy. The curry base just needs coconut milk, which means you can use any protein you like. If you’re not a fan of paneer, use cauliflower or go meaty with chunks of lamb or chicken – the options are endless! Serve with rice and roti to complete the dish.

Get the recipe for masala paneer curry here.

Harissa butter

We can’t get enough of the compound butter trend. Harissa adds a spicy kick and adds a sweet roasted flavour to dishes. Sure, you can make your own, but who has time? This paste will elevate all your dishes from veggies to protein, and even butter. Add to softened butter to create harissa butter that you’ll want to add to all your meals. Spread on toast, melt and drizzle over eggs, or use to baste steaks.


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Get the recipe for harissa butter here.

Want more recipes? Find the recipes for campfire mini sofrito shakshuka skillets and coconut laksa chicken noodles here.

Woolworths’ new fresh pastes are the flavour bombs every home cook needs in their arsenal. Made with fresh ingredients, they add flavour to dishes while minimising your time in the kitchen. These fresh pastes are inspired by flavours from around the world – laksa, sofrito, masala and harissa. Available in 150 g tubs. From 20 March – 2 April 2023, if you buy 2 you save R10! Find the full range in Woolworths stores in the produce foodie hub fridge alongside crushed garlic, ginger and chilli.

Shop at Woolworths.

Photographs and video: Sadiqah Assur-Ismail
Recipes and production: Jacqueline Burgess
Food assistant: Linda Marais-Lombard

TASTE Article by: TASTE

The TASTE team is a happy bunch of keen cooks and writers, always on the look out for the next food trend or the next piece of cake.

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