The following article was submitted by local Chef, Andrew Dunbar.
You know—all those plastic bottles that are littering your refrigerator door with empty hopes and dreams of making your food taste good or maybe even better than good. It’s all a lie though.
What is it really doing, you ask? Well, it’s making your food taste the same across the board. Ketchup on a hotdog, hamburger, or even dipping French fries into it—they all wind up tasting like ketchup.
So, why are we settling for an over-processed, sugar-packed food masker? Whets a food masker you might ask? Well, something that is there to take over the item and prevent its true flavor from coming out.
Why not make our own? Why not make something that is special to your family and not the same thing that everybody else has in their fridge? Make your own ketchup? Absolutely! We can even flavor it to fit what we’re cooking at home. Mustard—so much better when it’s made fresh and we have the benefit of making some unique beer mustard with local beer. Mayo is surprisingly easy when you see it done and the flavor is beyond anything that you would think from the simple ingredients from which it’s made. Let’s make some relish with those veggie scraps you have floating in old pickle jars in the back of the fridge. Best part about making your own relish and mayo is creating your own Tartar sauce
Making your own condiments can be something that you do weekly, monthly, or even yearly. Make them in small batches to keep the flavors rotating or perfect your ketchup and you can crank out a year’s-worth all at once.
I want to help everybody see the true potential in making their own condiments. Let’s make those summer cookouts that much better with condiments that are there to lift the food up, not mask it. Let’s make some amazing tartar sauce to take to the church Lenten dinner this year—and let’s make that tartar sauce the talk of the potluck!
So, with this, I say let’s terminate the purchase of food maskers. Let’s stop allowing bland burgers to be acceptable at a cookout because we know that the red and yellow goo that’s been left out for us to use isn’t going to save those patties. Why are we wasting our time in the Condiment Aisle of Shame at the grocery store? Let’s fight back against the food maskers! Let’s show ourselves, our families, and our friends that we are all about flavor and the flavors we like—not just the ones in a squeeze bottle or given out in little gratis packets.
Let’s show ourselves we want better . . . LETS START A WAR ON CONDIMENTS!!! WHO’S WITH ME?!?
If you are, I’ll be officially declaring a “War on Condiments” at Manitowoc Public Library on Thursday, March 9, from 6-7:30 PM in the Balkansky Community Room. This is an Adults-Only class (18-years old and older) and registration is required. SPACE IS LIMITED, so if you’re inclined to attend, sign-up quickly before all the spots are gobbled-up. Registration opens at 9 AM on Thursday, February 23. Click on this link— www.manitowoclibrary.org/event/war-condiments-chef-andrew-dunbar—that morning to secure your spot!
Vive Le Homemade Condiments!