Friday Serendipity

What do you know about catsup? Or ketchup? Or tomato sauce, as it’s called in some parts of the world?

In New Zealand they call it Tomato Sauce but the bottle and the contents were quite familiar to us and worked dandy fine for dipping french fries.

Bet you didn’t know that (according to Google) our concept of catsup/ketchup comes from a Chinese condiment? The word originally meant fish sauce in a dialect of Fujian province and then people from there immigrated to America they brought their food tastes with them.

Here is a recipe for Tomata (sic) Catsup in 1817:

“Gather a gallon of fine, red and fully ripe tomatas; mash them with one pound of salt; let them rest for three days then press off the juice and to each quart add a quarter pound of anchovies, two ounces of shallots, and an ounce of black pepper; boil up together for half an hour, strain through a sieve and put to it the following spices: quarter ounce of mace, the same of allspice and ginger, half an ounce of nutmeg, a drachm of coriander seed and half a drachm of cochineal; pound all together; let them simmer gently for twenty minutes and strain through a bag; when cold, bottle it,a dding to each bottle a wineglass of brandy. It will keep for seven years.”

A “drachm” is 1/8 of an ounce; cochineal was for red color and came from a certain seashell.

Makes me wonder: what is the list of ingredients for modern-day ketchup or catsup??? No brandy, I’d guess.


3 comments on “Friday Serendipity

  1. Bonnie Moore says:

    Awesome! Thanks for sharing!

  2. Sue Jensen says:

    cochineal is an insect that lives on cactus leaves. it is used as a dye for wool in the Navajo nation!

  3. Thanks for the fun share Donna – ps…you can also buy a bottle for $1.29 for a shortcut!

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