April 30 is National Raisin Day
Interesting Food Facts about Raisin
- In 1873, a freak hot spell withered the grapes on the vine. One enterprising San Francisco grocer advertised these shriveled grapes as “Peruvian Delicacies” and the rest is history.
- It takes more than 4 tons of grapes to produce 1 ton of raisins.
- The finest raisins come from Malaga in Spain.
- Raisin – comes from the Latin racemus and means “a cluster of grapes or berries”.
- Fresno, California is the Raisin Capital of the World.
Raisin colors vary by drying process. For example, a dark purplish/black raisin is sun-dried. A light to medium brown raisin is mechanically dehydrated in special drying tunnels. A golden to bright yellow raisin is mechanically dried and treated with sulfur dioxide to retain color and a green raisin is dried by air in adobe houses.
Golden raisins are made by treating the raisins with a lye solution, sometimes with lye and then burning sulfur, and sometimes with sulfur dioxide.
California discovered the commercial potential of raisins quite by accident. In 1873, a freak hot spell withered the grapes on the vine. One enterprising San Francisco grocer advertised these shriveled grapes as “Peruvian Delicacies” and the rest is history. California is now the world’s leading producer of raisins
Today’s Food History
- 1792 John Montague, 4th Earl of Sandwich died. Captain Cook named the Sandwich Islands after him (now known as Hawaii). He is supposed to have invented the sandwich as a quick meal so as not to interrupt his gambling sessions.
- 1904 The Louisiana Purchase Exposition opened in St. Louis (St. Louis World’s Fair). It was at the Fair that the ice cream cone was supposed to have been invented. The hot dog and iced tea were also popularized at the Fair.
- 1952 Mr. Potato Head is introduced to the world. Mr. Potato Head is the also the first toy to be advertised on television.
- 1955 ‘Cherry Pink & Apple Blossom White’ by Perez Prado hits number one on the charts.
- 1981 Dunkin Donuts opened its first store in the Philippines.