Posts tagged “food holiday book

January 7th is National Tempura Day!

Posted on January 7, 2019

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Did you know?

Tempura is actually a Portuguese form of cooking. Introduced to Japan in the 1500’s by Jesuit Priests.

Today’s 5 facts about Tempura:

  1. Tempura was considered a local delicacy in Nagasaki, Japan for well over 100 years.
  2. Tokugawa Ieyasu, considered the first Shogun of Japan, reportedly loved tempura.
  3. The word “tempura” comes from the word “tempora”, a Latin word meaning “times.”
  4. Outside Japan there are many nontraditional uses of tempura. Chefs over the world include tempura dishes on their menus, and a wide variety of different batters and ingredients are used, including the nontraditional broccoli, zucchini, sliced sweet potatoes, and asparagus.
  5. No Panko or Breadcrumbs are used in Tempura, as this method of using breadcrumbs is called Furai.

Today’s Food History

  • 1618 Francis Bacon became Lord Chancellor of England.
  • 1827 Sir Sanford Fleming was born. He devised the present system of time zones while working for the Canadian Pacific Railway.
  • 1896 The ‘Fannie Farmer Cookbook’ was published.
    1901 Alfred Packer is released from prison. He served 18 years for cannibalism after being stranded in the Rocky Mountains. (Actually he was convicted of murder, since cannibalism was not against the law).
  • 1958 Ant Farms go on sale. Milton Levine had the idea at a July 4th family picnic. I wonder if he had dreams of fencing them in so they would not bother him at picnics?
    1972 “American Pie” by Don McLean is #1 on the charts.

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January 1st is National Bloody Mary Day! / #NewYearsDay

Posted on January 1, 2019

Here are today’s five things to know about the Bloody Mary:

The drink’s namesake is Mary of England, whose 16th-century persecution of Protestants earned her the nickname.

Bloody Mary Coctail with celery stalk and pitcher.

Bloody Mary Coctail with celery stalk and pitcher.

Some drink aficionados believe the inspiration for the name was Hollywood star Mary Pickford.


The Bloody Mary is sometimes mistakenly believed to alleviate hangovers when it is served in the morning.  While it will temporarily alleviate some of the symptoms, it will also further dehydrate the drinker, causing the symptoms to worsen later.


The Bloody Mary is the US’s most popular alcoholic drink for brunch.


This drink has been called “The world’s most complex cocktail.”


Today’s Food History

  • 45 BC New Year’s Day was celebrated for the first time on January 1 when the Julian calendar took effect.
  • 1449 Lorenzo de Medici (The Magnificent) of Florence was born. Many in this Italian noble family were patrons of learning and the arts.  Lorenzo’s great granddaughter, Catherine, is known as the ‘mother of French haute cuisine’ because when she married the French king Henry II, she brought the finest Italian chefs, and her passion for fine food, with her to France. (With apologies to my French readers. Reasonable rebuttals accepted for future publication).
  • 1735 Paul Revere was born. A silversmith and American Revolutionary folk hero, he also made surgical instruments and false teeth.
  • 1772 The London Credit Exchange Company issued the first traveler’s checks.
  • 1800 Louis-Jean-Marie Daubenton died. A French naturalist, he was a pioneer in several fields including plant physiology. He conducted many agricultural experiments and introduced Merino sheep to France. First director of the Museum of Natural History in Paris.
  • 1863 Daniel Freeman is the first to submit a claim under the new Homestead Act, for 160 acres near Beatrice, Nebraska.
  • 1876 The first world’s oldest trademark is the red triangle registered for Bass Pale Ale. (Some sources say 1883 or 1890)
  • 1876 The first agricultural experiment station was established at Middleton, Connecticut.
  • 1895 C.W. Post of Battle Creek, Michigan introduced Postum Food Coffee, a coffee substitute made from wheat, bran and molasses.
  • 1896 Alfred Ely Beach died. American inventor and publisher of Scientific American magazine.
  • 1898 Post Grape Nuts are introduced by C. W. Post of Battle Creek, Michigan. (There are no grapes or nuts in Grape Nuts).
  • 1905 The New York Times builds the Times Tower at Long Acre Square, has the name changed to Times Square and celebrated the event with a New Year’s Eve Fireworks show. The beginning of an American tradition at Times Square.
  • 1907 The Times introduced the New Years Eve Ball on their building at Times Square in New York. Descending to mark the end of the old and the beginning of the New Year ever since.
  • 1909 Marcel Proust had a flashback. On January 1, 1909, he ate a piece of tea-soaked toast whose taste caused a flood of childhood memories. In his 7 volume allegorical novel ‘Remembrance of Things Past,’ the character named Swann has a similar experience when he bites into a lemon cookie (a ‘Madeleine’) which brings on a similar flood of memories.
  • 1935 In Miami, the first Orange Bowl was played on this day in 1935. Bucknell University wins over the University of Miami, 26-0.
  • 1935 The first Sugar Bowl football game was played on this day in 1935 in New Orleans.
  • 1935 B. (Barnard) Kliban was born. A satirical cartoonist, best known for his cat cartoons. A few of his cartoon book titles: ‘Never Eat Anything Larger Than Your Head’, ‘The Biggest Tongue in Tunisia’.
  • 1942 Country Joe McDonald of ‘Country Joe and the Fish’ was born.
  • 1958 The agreements establishing the European Economic Community (EEC or Common Market) went into effect.
  • 1994 The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) went into effect between the U.S., Canada and Mexico.
  • 1996 The last Polynesian tree snail, species Partula turgida, died at the London Zoo. They lived on the South Pacific island of Raiatea, where the residents imported predatory snails from Florida to eat a pest snail, originally imported from Africa. Instead they ate the native Tree Snail to extinction. We never seem to learn about the consequences of introducing nonnative species.
  • 1998 Smoking is banned in California restaurants and bars.
  • 2002 The ‘euro’ was introduced, the new monetary unit of the European Union.

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November 8th is National Cappuccino Day! ☕️ / #NationalCappuccinoDay

Posted on November 8, 2018

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Happy National Cappuccino Day


Here are today’s five things to know about Cappuccino:

Cappuccino was invented in Italy.


It was first patented by a man named Luigi Bezzera in 1901.


In Italy, cappuccino is traditionally consumed once a day with breakfast.


The steamed foam served with capuccino serves as an insulator and allows the liquid to retain its heat for a longer period of time.


Capuccino is rumored to have been named after Marco d’Aviano: a friar who led the resistance to the Turkish seige of Vienna in 1683. This rumor has not been supported by any historical evidence.

Today’s Food History

  • 1789 Elijah Craig distilled the first bourbon whiskey from corn, in Bourbon County, Kentucky.
  • 1910 This is one for those who think the electric insect ‘zapper is a relatively new device. A patent for the first electric insect ‘zapper’ was issued to William H. Frost of Spokane, Washington.
  • 1974 London’s famous flower and vegetable market moves from Covent Garden.

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November 4th is National Candy Day!

Posted on November 4, 2018

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Here are today’s five things to know about Candy:

The first chocolate eggs were made in Europe in the early 19th century and remain among the most popular treats associated with Easter.

The winter holidays represent the biggest boxed chocolate selling season.

How many licks does it take to get to the center of a tootsie-pop? According to student researchers at Purdue, it’s 364 licks.

Until the 1930s, the Sugar Daddy candy pop was called the “Papa Sucker.”


The name “Pez” comes from the German word “pfeffErminZ,” meaning “peppermint.”

Today’s Food History

  • 1873 Anthony Iske was issued a patent for a meat slicing machine. It worked much like a mandoline, with a frame to hold the meat while sliding it against the blade.
  • 1879 James and John Ritty invented the first cash register. They came up with the idea to prevent bartenders from stealing at the Pony House Restaurant in Dayton, Ohio.
  • 1879 African-American inventor, Thomas Elkins received a patent for a refrigerating machine, which could be used to cool food (or even human corpses according to the patent application).
  • 1923 Alfred Heineken was born. Grandson of Gerard Adriaan Heineken, the founder of Heineken Brewery. He was president of the company from 1964 to 1989.

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October 31st is National Caramel Apple Day! / #Halloween

Posted on October 31, 2018

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Here are today’s five things to know about the caramel apple:

Candy Apples were first introduced in Arabian cuisine. The reason was that fruit was candied to preserve it.


Americans have over the years turned that practice into gigantic apples covered everything from red candy and caramel to chocolate, peanuts, popcorn, and more chocolate.


Soldiers in World War I slanged them “toffee apples.”  Candy Apples are popular all over the world.


England celebrates Guy Fawkes Day with caramel apples on November 5.


Everything from a Kool-Aid flavor to a nail-polish shade has been named candy apple red.

Today’s Food History

  • 1826 Noah Cushing was issued a patent for a threshing and winnowing machine.
  • 1831 Carl von Voit was born. German physiologist whose work on metabolism helped establish modern nutritional science.
  • 1888 Scottish inventor John Boyd Dunlop was issued a patent for pneumatic bicycle tires.
  • 1917 Patience Gray, British cookery writer, was born. ’Plats Du Jour’ (1957), ‘Honey From A Weed’(1986)
  • 1920 Justice Oliver Wendell Homes handed down the decision of the Supreme Court, which upheld trademark violations for The ‘Coca- Cola Company’ against ‘The Koke Company of America’.
  • 1950 John Candy was born. Canadian comedian and actor, member of ‘The Second City’ comedy troupe.
  • 1981 Dunkin’ Donuts opened its first store in Thailand.
  • 1982 Waverley Root, cookbook and food author died in Paris at age 79.
  • 2007 David Tallichet, founder of Specialty Restaurants Corp, died. A former WW II pilot, most of the restaurants have aviation themes, or are located on prime waterfront or hilltop properties.

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October 30th is National Candy Corn Day!

Posted on October 30, 2018

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Happy National Candy Corn Day

Did you know candy corn started as a gimmick to prove the goodness of corn sugar?


Here are today’s facts to know about Candy Corn:

  • One serving of candy corn contains only about 140 calories.
  • Candy corn has 3.57 calories per kernel.
  • More than 35 million pounds of candy corn will be produced this year. That equates to nearly 9 billion pieces — enough to circle the moon nearly four times if laid end-to-end.
  • Halloween accounts for 75% of the annual candy corn production.
  • A cup of candy corn has fewer calories than a cup of raisins.

Today’s Food History

  • 1815 Andrew Jackson Downing was born. American horticulturist, author of ‘The Fruits and Fruit Trees of America’ (1845) and editor of the ‘Horticulturist’ periodical.
  • 1894 The first U.S. patent for a time clock was issued to Daniel Cooper of Rochester, New York.
  • 1990 ‘Ice Ice Baby’ by Vanilla Ice is #1 on the charts.

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October 28th is National Chocolate Day! / #NationalChocolateDay

Posted on October 28, 2018

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Happy National Chocolate Day!

Did you know the smell of chocolate is a natural calming agent?


Here’s a Foodimentary look at he history of Chocolate 

Here are today’s five thing to know about Chocolate:

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  • White chocolate originates from the cocoa (cacao) plant, but it is not ‘chocolate.’
  • Switzerland is one of the top countries for chocolate consumption. The Swiss consume about 22 lbs of chocolate, per person, per year.giphy24
  • Most cocoa comes from West Africa.
  • Allowing chocolate to melt in your mouth produces the same or even stronger reactions as passionately kissing.
  •  Cocoa beans were used as currency by the Mayan and Aztec cultures. Perhaps this is where they saying “Money grows on trees” came from.

Today in Food History

  • 1846 (Georges-) Auguste Escoffier was born. Escoffier was called “the emperor of chefs” and “emperor of the world’s kitchens” by Emperor William II of Germany. He modernized and codified the elaborate haute cuisine created by Marie-Antoine Carême, and developed the ‘brigade de cuisine,’ system of kitchen organization. Escoffier was chef at the Carlton Hotel in London, the Grande National Hotel in Lucerne, Switzerland, the Grand Hotel in Monte Carlo, the Savoy in London and the Ritz hotels in Paris and New York City. His books include ‘Guide culinaire’ and ‘Ma Cuisine.’
  • 1886 The Statue of Liberty (‘Liberty Enlightening the World’) was officially unveiled and dedicated in New York Harbor.
  • 1916 Cleveland Abbe died. Abbe was an astronomer and meteorologist, and is considered the “father of the U.S. Weather Bureau.” The Weather Bureau (National Weather Service) was authorized by Congress in 1870.
  • 1919 The Volstead Act was passed, which enforced the 18th amendment, prohibiting the sale of alcoholic beverages. It went into effect on January 16, 1920.

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