Condiment Alert: Here's Why India Has The Best Ketchup

That is one enthusiastic ketchup man right there. I've since finished my jar of coriander chutney since writing about its many virtues last week but I'm still on an Indian condiment kick. I remember dipping fries into ketchup in India as a kid and thinking "what the hell is this stuff?" It was definitely ketchup — thick, sweet and dark — but it was sharper and more spiced than its glossy, pale red American counterpart. Comprehending as an American child that another country's ketchup could possibly be better on more things really did a number on my juvenile patriotism. And it really didn't help the early onset urge to photograph and document what I ate.

Maggi brand ketchup is nectar of the gods. Owing to its more complex flavor, it complements food you'd never expect, pizza for instance — just listen — from Smokin' Joe's, authentic Indian pizza chain (check out their menu for clarification). Indian ketchup. On Indian pizza, which, as you might expect, is a far cry from New York pizza. Or Italian pizza, whatever. It's also good on tandoori chicken, samosas, akoori and toastie sandwiches. Basically, everything Indian I've ever written about for breakfast or lunch. It doesn't go on rice dishes, so scrap like, half of the subcontinent's cuisine and Maggi ketchup is the perfect accompaniment to the rest.

And now, a super-secret recipe I made up. Follow our directions for the perfect meatloaf, substituting ground chicken for the sacred cow (I'm no heathen), Maggi ketchup for regular ketchup (including in the glaze) and adding a half teaspoon each of ground cumin and coriander to the mix. Bake, rest and wrap that up in some NAAN. Totally legit Indian meatloaf sandwich! Score one for the halvsies. Even if I attempt fusion and fail, it's still okay because by the Darwinist theory of food, it's diversification that's most likely to get shared by another site.

More love of global condiments on Food Republic: