Some love it while others hate it — ketchup can be a controversial condiment for foodies worldwide! The tasty condiment is a classic in most households and is often a key ingredient in kid-friendly meals, but have you ever struggled to get the topping out of a glass bottle?
Fret not, one university professor has revealed the best way to get to the sauce without completely covering your food. Dr. Alan Mackie, a professor of chemistry at the University of Leeds, says the key to getting the ketchup out of the bottle without splattering the substance all over your meal has to do with the tapping technique. By gently tapping the neck of the bottle, you will have more control in how the ketchup exits the bottle.
The best part? It all comes down to science. Dr. Mackie revealed the method in a recent episode of the UK Channel 4 series Food Unwrapped. He explained that the ingredients of the popular condiment are what make it so unique. Ketchup is made of tomato and water particles which are quite thin, polymers are added to thicken the substance. When the bottle of ketchup is turned upside down, the polymers activate, making the sauce thicker, and thus more difficult to get out of the bottle.
He also suggests refraining from hitting the bottom of the bottle as this is what most often causes the spurt of ketchup.
“When you turn it upside down, the polymers entangle and it doesn’t flow,” Dr. Mackie told Food Unwrapped. “When you hit it on the bottom, you tend to make the entire jar liquid if you hit it hard, which is not what you want, and that’s why it comes out in a big splurt.”
By gently tapping the neck of the bottle, only the ketchup at the top will liquify, allowing you to control the condiment more easily.
Who knew science and condiments would intertwine?