Five Food Finds about Cookies:
- American cookie jars evolved from British biscuit jars and first appeared on the scene during the Depression in the 1930s when housewives began making more cookies at home, rather than buying them at the bakery, and needed containers for them.
- Early American tinsmiths began making cookie cutters by hand back in the 1700s.
- The U.S. has a National Cookie Cutter Historical Museum located within the Joplin Museum Complex in Joplin, Missouri.
- In 1989, New Mexico named the ‘bizcochito’ its official state cookie. Bizcochito, derived from the spanish word ‘bizcocho’ which means biscuit, is a delicious shortbread cookie flavored with anise and topped with cinnamon sugar.
- The U.S. leads the world as the biggest cookie bakers and eaters, spending more than $550 million annually on Oreos alone.
Today’s Food History
on this day in…
1766 Jacob Perkins was born. Perkins was issued the first U.S. patent for a refrigerating machine. It used sulfuric ether compression.
1792 S.L. Mitchell was named as the first Professor of Agriculture, at Columbia College, New York City.
1815 The first natural gas well in the U.S. was discovered by accident, near Charleston, West Virginia. They had been digging a salt brine well.
1850 U.S. president Zachary Taylor died. He supposedly developed peritonitis after eating too much of a new dessert treat, strawberry ice cream, at a 4th of July celebration.
1869 Henry Tibbe invented the corncob pipe. The pipe was made from a white kernel corn that was used to make taco and tortilla flour. (But can you roll a cigar with a taco wrapper?)
1872 John F. Blondel of Thomason (Thomaston?), Maine, patented the first doughnut cutter.
1887 John Dickenson introduced paper napkins at his company’s annual dinner.
1894 Percy Le Baron Spencer was born. Spencer developed the microwave oven in 1946, after he noticed that some chocolate in his pocket had melted after being accidentally exposed to radiation from a magnetron tube he was working on at the time.
1957 Actress Kelly McGillis was born. McGillis has a restaurant here in Key West, Florida called Kelly’s Place
1982 Diet Coke was introduced.
2004 Jeff Smith, TV’s ‘Frugal Gourmet,’ died at age 65