Saturday, 10 October 2015

Food for kings

Borrowed from the Daily Mail
Hot buttered toast spread with Bovril!

I know the French think that they invented good food, but they are wrong!  There are, too, lovers of Italian, Indian, Greek, Thai, Chinese and Japanese cooking - and I don't mean to suggest that those cuisines are without any merit - but to my mind, the whole world owes a great deal to Great British cooking.

Not everybody - not even every Englishman! - likes Bovril and perhaps it is something of an acquired taste: according to the Wiki, Bovril is the trademarked name of a thick, salty meat extract, developed in the 1870s.    Much to my surprise, I found that Bovril was invented (if that's the right word to use for a food product) by a Scotsman in Canada at the request of the French ruler, Napoleon III.  Well, that's almost true.  In fact, Napoleon III wanted beef, a million tins of it, to feed his troops in the Franco-Prussian War and gave the order to John Lawson Johnston, the Scotsman living in Canada.  Storage and transport for a million tins of beef would prove problematical, so Johnston developed 'Johnston's Fluid beef', later to be known as Bovril.

I don't know if Bovril's distinctive brown glass jar is registered as a trademark.  If not, it certainly ought to be.


joeh said...

Interesting...i'll pass.

#1Nana said...

Somehow Bovril was left out of my English upbringing. I still, however, love fish and chips, Lyles Golden Syrup, Licorice Allsorts, and beans on toast.

Sarah said...

I LOVE Bovril on toast, it's something I grew up with AND I like is as a drink in hot water.