June 15, 2012

Red bananas

bottle of Jufran banana ketchup Banana "ketchup" is a uniquely Filipino product. No, it doesn't have tomatoes; it really is made from bananas, with vinegar, sugar and spices. Think of it as a sweet and spicy banana sauce, similar in taste to Thai sweet chili sauce. Banana ketchup was invented during World War II when there was a shortage of tomatoes (and many other things besides), and its formulation is credited to Maria Ylagan Orosa (1892–1945), a food technologist, nationalist and war heroine. If you've ever mashed bananas, you know that it is light brown in color; banana ketchup is red because of food coloring—to make it more acceptable as a ketchup replacement to Filipinos and Americans in the country during the WWII era. But almost three-quarters of a century after the war, I wish Jufran and other makers of banana ketchup would drop the red food coloring and stop calling it ketchup. It's a flavorful and appetizing condiment which can—and should—be elevated to something more than "fake ketchup."

6 comments:

Olivier said...

ketchup a la banane ? ca doit etre bon

Dina said...

Ersatz ketchup, interesting.
I'd like to taste that.

Cezar and Léia said...

Really interesting, I imagine it's delicious and healthy!
Léia

Al said...

I've never heard of this before. It sounds intriguing, I'd try it.

Rob and Mandy said...

Oh my, would love to try this one! We will try to find it in one of the many Filipino shops around.

Tamera said...

It is extremely awesome! You can get it here in Colorado, believe it or not, and I keep a bottle in the fridge at all times :^)