MANILA — Google on Friday paid tribute to a Filipino food scientist and humanitarian through a “doodle,” or an illustration prominently displayed on its home page.
The doodle for November 29, 2019 shows Maria Ylagan Orosa, who is also known as the inventor of banana ketchup, on the occasion of her 126th birth anniversary.
Orosa hailed from Taal, Batangas and earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in pharmaceutical chemistry and food chemistry in the University of Seattle.
She returned to the Philippines in 1922 to help address the problem of malnutrition in the country through her culinary inventions.
Orosa is credited with inventing the palayok oven, which at the time provided remote villages a more effective means of cooking in the absence of electricity.
Aside from banana ketchup, now an iconic and well-loved condiment among Filipinos, Orosa invented Soyalac (a nutritious soya beans drink) and Darak (rice cookies rich in vitamin B1) — both provisions for Philippine forces during World War II.
In 1983, the National Historical Institute installed a marker at the Bureau of Plant Industry in Manila in recognition of Orosa as a war hero, food scientist, and humanitarian.