Tomatoes trying to Catchup?

Tomatoes trying to Catchup?



Ha! See I made you smile :)

We are talking about the same red tomato sauce that you lap up while eating fries or that gooey cheesy pizza. A lot of people also call it ‘catsup’.

Fries and Ketchup

Have you ever wondered why ketchup is called so. Well it can be easily called tomato sauce by just everyone. Then why ketchup?


The mystery of the name lies in the Chinese origin of the sauce. In the late 17th century, the Chinese mixed pickled fish with spices and in their language (which was mandarin) called it ke-chiapmeaning the brine of pickled fish. By the beginning of 18th century, this sauce  made its way into the neighbouring countries (present day Malaysia and Singapore). By now the sauce was called kechap.

Soon enough this delicacy was discovered by British explorers. Many versions of the sauce were made over the century. And then the version with lots of tomatoes stayed on. That word kechap also evolved over the years into the English word “ketchup”.

Today, H. J. Heinz Company, the largest distributor of ketchup in the world.

Heinz Ketchup

Did you know?
The study of how the words originated and also the way in which their meanings have changed throughout history is Etymology. Can you find some words with interesting Etymology??
Here is one to start with – Vermicelli comes from Latin word ‘vermiculae’ meaning ‘little worms’ since the pasta resembles wriggly worms.

Kinooze Little Writers Program


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