From its classic tomato sauce to exotic kangaroo tail soup and the less-exciting curry in a can – MasterFoods has definitely been behind an endless number of specialities that have passed through Australians kitchens over the decades. And as this year marks the iconic home-grown brand’s 75th anniversary, MasterFoods has opened the archive for Aussies to remember those legendary products that are now their favourite nostalgic foods.
What originally started as a family business back in 1945 has now grown into an iconic brand that’s known and loved by cooks all over the country. But it all started with the release of its first food item in 1950 known as Bread and Butter Cucumbers alongside other popular delicacies of the decade like Roll Mops (pickled herring), Mint Jelly, Sauerkraut and the hottest of Hot English Mustards.
The ’60s saw the release of the Kangaroo Tail Soup, which was served up on Qantas flights, before moving onto the conveniently packaged seasonings and herbs in the ’70s. Nowadays, these quick and easy glass jars containing any and all forms of herbs and spices can be found stacked in the cupboards of almost every kitchen in the country.
A decade later, MasterFoods showed off its own cookbooks before moving into the ’90s with one of the most internationally innovative food products released by the brand itself.
It’s hard to remember the world before sauce bottles that can be squeezed but before MasterFoods put their special touch on the product, people were left smacking the bottoms of glass bottles just to get the last drop. But around three decades ago that all changed when MasterFoods created the world’s first squeezy sauce bottle.
And it didn’t stop there! While the brand was busy forever changing the world of condiments, it also invented the iconic single serve squeeze-on sauces that still remain a staple at any takeaway shop, particularly those who sell meat pies or sausage rolls.
Internationally renowned food writer and culinary historian Barbara Santich who has long explored the Australian culinary landscape said the brand has gotten its iconic status through ignoring traditional rules to create dishes that are characteristically Australian.
“Over 75 years, MasterFoods has been similarly creative, anticipating and responding to changes in tastes and techniques with products such as its Chilly Sauce and Red Hot Pepper Sauce in the 1950s, and its Chunky Zucchini in Tomato & Parsley Sauce in the 1980s. It has been an enduring and valued part of our kitchens, helping advance our food culture by catapulting new flavours and foods into the mainstream.”
Today, the brand is known by its extensive range of products on offer from sauces to stir-ins, and with no signs of slowing down – who knows where MasterFoods will be in the next 75 years!
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