In the 1600s British sailors and traders came across tomato sauce in the Southeast Asia. The British tried to make a copy of the sauce in the late 17th and 18th centuries having seen a recipe that was called Ketchup in Paste. However, this particular recipe used ingredients like mushrooms, walnuts, oysters, and anchovies to create savory fish flavors. Ketchups in the early days was thin in consistency and added to soups, sauces, meat, and fish. The leader of ketchup in Britain is Heinz and many people will only choose this brand. Pretty much it is used as a condiment on most any kind of food.
Tomatoes were finally added as an ingredient in 1812. The first known recipe for tomato ketchup was one where tomatoes were referred to as “love apples” and the recipe consisted of tomato pulp, spices, and brandy. People loved ketchup because it could be kept for a year and since the tomato growing season was short people attempted to preserve tomatoes. You can make a tasty homemade sauce tomato sauce. Today ketchup is thick and tasty and used on most every kind of food especially on hamburgers and French fries. You can make a delicious traditional British ketchup at home known as pomodoro sauce. A favorite British dish consists of sausages, mashed potatoes, and green peas and is served with a special sauce like teriyaki sauce.
Other well-known British sauces
Worcester Sauce is a popular liquid condiment produced by the company Lea & Perrins. The ingredients for this sauce have been matured for 18 months and then bottled in Worcester, England. The recipe was devised in the 1830s. People enjoy using it today in their cooking.
Marmite is a sticky, dark brown food paste known for its strong flavor and is very salty. It is very popular among the British. Originally it came in earthenware pots but today you can buy it
in glass jars that are shaped like a French cooking pot. It is spread on toast, cheese sandwiches, and crackers.
Mint Sauce is a mix of chopped spearmint in vinegar and sugar and in some recipes is used instead of fresh mint. It can be eaten on toast or bread and is popular as a condiment to roast lamb.
Brown Sauce is a traditional dark brown condiment that is very popular in Britain. The ingredients include a mix of tomatoes, molasses, dates, apples, tamarind spices, vinegar and sometimes even raisins or anchovies. The taste is kind of sweet and peppery. The most popular brand in Britain is Daddies.
Piccalilli was created as the English interpretation of a mix of Indian pickles. The relish consists of chopped pickled vegetables and spice and the British version has various vegetables like cauliflower, onion, and gherkin with seasonings like mustard and turmeric. It is popular to have with cold meats like ham and head cheese and the British traditional Ploughman’s lunch with bread, meat, onions, and butter.
English Mustard is known to be one of the hottest mustard varieties in the world. The most famous brand is Coleman’s which was first produced in 1814 as a powder in yellow tins. Now you can purchase it ready-made. It is used on hot dogs, sandwiches, and burgers.
Branston Pickle is similar to Piccalilli but also includes swede, carrots, onions, and cauliflower in a pickled sauce made of vinegar, tomatoes, apples, and spices. The sugar has been replaced by corn syrup. It is sweet and spice and of chutney consistency. It is served on sandwiches. It is sold in chunky and small chunky varieties.
Liquor is a savory parsley sauce that is usually served with traditional London-style pie and mash. This sauce does not include liquor but instead is an eel-based sauce. Using this sauce on pie and mash makes them very British indeed.
Bread Sauce is a basic sauce that consists of milk and breadcrumbs. It is usually eaten with roast chicken or turkey. It is flavored with onion, salt, cloves, mace, pepper, and bay leaf. The economical way to make this sauce is by using leftover stale bread.
Gravy the British way is made from meat juices that come from roasting meats. Wheat flour is added for thickening., You can get ready-made cubes for making this sauce like OXO and powders as natural meat or vegetable extracts.