There is definitely bay-leaf in 99-X. I have seen that ingredient for myself in the Marion Kay container.
Because dried bay-leaf is quite difficult to grind by itself... (Try this in your own electric grinders at home and you will see what I mean
)... Then occasionally it leaves behind small flaked or fragmented pieces, visible to the naked eye.
I have seen such pieces, or fragments of bayleaf in the MK 25oz containers for myself. They are few and far between, but they are obviously bay-leaf you can sometimes even see the tiny leaf veins on the small fragments.
Also in the MK container, you can see the red chilli/pepper flakes which are a brighter red colour than what I have observed in vial J... I cannot be certain of the brand of chilli pepper, but it is definitely visible to the eye too.
I don't know where Mr Derrick Wilson is from in the world, but I will add this though in his favour... In South Africa they have KFC outlets that sell KFC chicken, which appears to contain marjoram. (taken from a South African ingredient and allergen list in 2010)
Marjoram weighs 0.6g per teaspoon (USDA weight) which is the same weight exactly for Bay-Leaf. My thoughts are in that country they chose not to sell the colonel's original recipe chicken there, as the laws of the country require them to reveal many ingredients and they appear to disclose more than most countries on their allergen lists)
So the fact the two ingredients weigh the same, makes me think they replaced the bay-leaf in the colonel's original recipe with marjoram and I personally think some other ingredients were 'exchanged' too, for example cardamon which has a USDA weight of 2g per teaspoon, was probably replaced with celery seed, which also has an exact USDA weight of 2g). That ingredient is also shown in relation to South African chicken recipes.
Over there, it is simply called SA Chicken and like most places they sell it in buckets and the usual size KFC meals... You can even 'go large' with the meals etc.
My opinion is the corporation changed the original recipe ingredients so as not to reveal the colonel's original recipe. Hence you will not find original recipe chicken in South Africa... Only an altered recipe with ingredients that weigh the same and could easily be exchanged without complicating things and without enormous change to the core of the recipe.
We can of course prove beyond doubt that celery seed is not
in the colonel's original recipe in both the US and UK because laws on allergens in those countries reveal that there is definitely no celery. (... or mustard either).
Now if my opinion here (and it is just an opinion) is proven correct, then it is more than coincidence that celery seed and marjoram just happen to weigh the same as cardamom and bay-leaf.. and are easily interchangeable.
Now that's why I am wondering where Derrick Wilson is from or where he gets his information from ... Because if his info is connected to South Africa, or they use the South African recipe in his own country then he might just hold a valid view.
For the rest of us though, in the US and UK and many other countries, the microscopic and associated evidence clearly supports bay-leaf and cardamon seed as being part of 99-X and contained in the colonel's original recipe seasoning.
Please bear in mind this is simply my own view here and it does also go some way to confirming bay-leaf and cardamom as being part of the Colonel's recipe.
Here is a link to the South African Ingredients and Allergens Document on which I have based my opinions:
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