According to the bit of history on its jar, the pepper sauce is common among the Kroo people, originally from Liberia and settled into Sierra Leone during the 19thcentury in an area called Krootown, affectionately called Koto by its inhabitants. The fried pepper sauce, which can be used as a seasoning or a marinade, is based on a recipe common among the Kroo and passed down from generation to generation.
Bickersteth has taken on the tradition, not so much out of a sense of cultural pride, but out of frustration in trying to find a sauce with that just-right mix of peppers, onions, fish and spices. “At lot of people prepare it at home. But, it does smell up the whole house,” he admits. “So when people see it in the stores, it’s just easier to buy it. But what I was seeing in the stores just wasn’t done well and the packaging was awful. I thought I could do better than that.”