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I recently came back into touch with a friend whom I had not seen or spoken with in several years. One of the first questions she asked me when we hung out last week was, "What new condiments can you recommend?" Now readers, I have to be honest with you...I have a severe condiment problem. I'm a condiment hoarder. I love them, my fridge is full of them and I use them all. It ranges the whole gamut: umeboshi paste to truffle salt to yuzu hot sauce and furikake; it's all in there mixed together with the Sriracha, Korean Gochujang, Maggi Seasoning, and good ol' Heinz Ketchup. It's nice, it's wonderful...it's also taking over my fridge! Anyhow..............I thought long and hard and emailed her back about "Nanami Togarashi." I totally have a spice crush on Nanami Togarashi right now.

Nanami Togarashi typically contains coarsely ground red pepper, ground sansho peppercorns, roasted mandarin peel, black sesame seed, white sesame seed, hemp seed, ground ginger and nori. It's spicy (but not crazy-spicy) and has a lovely citrus-centric flavor to it. I love dashing some Nanami Togarashi on my udons, ramens, sneaking it into my dark chocolate desserts and even sprinkling some on pork products (ribs, mmmm!) ; but most of all, I enjoy pairing it with fresh avocado. One of my favorite afternoon snacks is- sliced avocado topped with lime juice, a bit of sea salt and a few shakes of Nanami Togarashi. Mmmmm!  I love how the simple seasonings enhance the natural flavor of the avocado. It's delicious and quite addictive.

If you're interested in trying it, you can purchase Nanami Togarashi at most Asian stores (Oto's carries it here in Sacramento) or you can get it on Amazon. A bottle should run you about $5, but a little goes a long way.

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