If you, like us, have been spending more time cooking than ever before, you might be reaching a breaking point. (If not, congrats.) We’re about *this* close to swearing off buttered noodles and canned beans forever. Enter Omsom, a new Southeast Asian food company that will, not to be dramatic, bring life back to your meals.
Co-founded by sisters Vanessa and Kim Pham, Omsom offers cooking starters that are basically shortcuts to Southeast Asian food, making flavorful, super-authentic dishes accessible to home cooks who might not have the spices or harder-to-source ingredients required. There’s Vietnamese lemongrass barbecue, Thai larb (a meat-based salad), and Filipino sisig (a traditional pork hash). The kits even have a shelf-life of 12 months, so they’re basically your new pantry staples.
“As daughters of refugees, we started Omsom as a celebration of the multitudes within Asian cultures,” says Kim Pham in a press release. “Walking down most ‘ethnic’ aisles in mainstream grocery stores feels like stepping back in time—old-school products that feel compromised in flavor, outdated in brand and rooted in stereotypical design. We want to start making this category feel representative of the changing DNA of this country, and reflect the depth and nuance in Asian recipes, tastes and traditions.”
How do the starters work? You supply the protein and Omsom does the hard work (aka providing the spice blend and recipe). Each kit comes with a suggested recipe developed in collaboration with New York City chefs Jimmy Ly, Chat and Ohm Suansilphong and Nicole Ponseca (of restaurants Madame Vo, Fish Cheeks and Jeepney, respectively), so you know the results will be better than takeout.