April 9th is National Chinese Almond Cookie Day!
Here are today’s five food facts to know about Chinese Almond Cookies:
- In Mandarin Chinese, these are more literally called “Almond Cakes.”
- The Chinese Almond Cookie is native to southern and southeast China.
- There is no record of these cookies before the 1900’s.
- The Chinese commonly prepared Almond milk and Almond tea.
- An American variation exists using pecans.
Typical to southern and southeastern China, these almond cookies are usually enjoyed around Chinese New Year, and are given as gifts to family and friends.
In some Chinese restaurants, they are served to cleanse the palate after several courses, rather than being regarded as a dessert.
Yuan-Shan Chi declared these cookies “as Chinese as blueberry pie.”
Today’s Food History
o 1626 R.I.P. Sir Francis Bacon. An English statesman, philosopher and author of ‘Novum Organum’, a work on scientific inquiry. Some also claim he wrote the plays attributed to Shakespeare. He died after having stuffed a dressed chicken with snow to see how long the flesh could be preserved by the extreme cold. He caught cold and died from complications about a month later.
o 1682 Rene-Robert Cavelier, Sieur de La Salle discovered the mouth of the Mississippi River and claimed the whole Mississippi Basin for France. He named it Louisiana, in honor of Louis XIV of France.
o 1770 Capt. James Cook discovered Botany Bay on the Australian continent.
o 1850 R.I.P William Prout. An English chemist, he was the first to classify food components into 3 main divisions – carbohydrates, fats and proteins.
o 1872 Samuel R. Percy of New York received a patent for dried milk.
o 1965 The entire cast of the comic strip ‘Peanuts’ was featured on the cover of TIME magazine