Posts tagged “transportation

April 9 is National Chinese Almond Cookie Day

Posted on April 9, 2014

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Interesting Food Facts about Chinese Almond Cookies

  1. In Mandarin Chinese, these are more literally called “Almond Cakes.”
  2. The Chinese Almond Cookie is native to southern and southeast China.
  3. There is no record of these cookies before the 1900’s.
  4. The Chinese commonly prepared Almond milk and Almond tea.
  5. An American variation exists using pecans.

Fun Fact:

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.”

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Today’s Food History

  • 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.
  • 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.
  • 1770 Capt. James Cook discovered Botany Bay on the Australian continent.
  • 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.
  • 1872 Samuel R. Percy of New York received a patent for dried milk.
  • 1965 The entire cast of the comic strip ‘Peanuts’ was featured on the cover of TIME magazine

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April 7 is National Coffee Cake Day

Posted on April 7, 2014

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Interesting Food Facts about Coffee Cake

  1. Coffee cake was not invented, rather it evolved from a variety of different types of cakes.
  2. Cakes in their various forms have been around since biblical times, the simplest varieties made from honey or dates and other fruits.
  3. The Danish came up with the earliest versions of coffee cake.  Around the 17th century in Europe, it became the custom to enjoy a delicious sweet and yeasty type of bread when drinking coffee beverages.
  4. There are many available combinations, everything from blueberry coffee cakes to cinnamon walnut coffee cake and more.
  5. The hole in the center of most coffee cakes is a relatively recent innovation—it became popular in the 1950’s.  This “bundt pan” was invented to allowed heavier batters to get cooked all the way through without any dough left unbaked in the center.

Fun Fact:

The first coffee cakes are thought to have originated in Germany. These were more like sweet breads than cakes.

According to the book Listening to America, Stuart Berg Flexner, it wasn’t until 1879 that the term “coffee cake” became a common term.

In Hungary, a type of coffee cake is aranygaluska, which utilizes cinnamon.

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Today’s Food History

  • 1727 Michel Adanson was born. Adanson was a French botanist who developed a system of plant classification based on physical characteristics. His system was opposed by Carolus Linnaeus, and was not widely used.
  • 1857 A cold front barrels over the U.S. and snow falls in every state in the country.
  • 1860 Will Kieth Kellogg was born. Founded the Battle Creek Toasted Corn Flake Co. (later the W.K. Kellogg Company) to manufacture cereals (cornflakes were the first) developed by his brother John Harvey Kellogg.
  • 1869 David Grandison Fairchild was born. An American botanist and agriculturalist, he was responsible for introducing many useful plants to the U.S. Author of ‘The World Was My Garden,’ and ‘Exploring for Plants’.
  • 1933 The beginning of the end of Prohibition. On this day 3.2 percent beer sales were allowed in advance of Prohibition’s ratification.
  • 1943 Mick Abrahams of the music group ‘Jethro Tull’ was born.
  • 1948 The World Health Organization (WHO) was established.
  • 1967 ‘Happy Together’ by Turtles is #1 on the charts.

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April 3 is National Chocolate Mousse Day

Posted on April 3, 2014

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Interesting Food Facts about Chocolate Mousse

  1. The word mousse is French and translates as “froth” or “foam.”
  2. Cold dessert mousses are often poured into decorative glasses and garnished with fruit, sweet sauces, or whipped cream.
  3. Savory mousses can be made from fish, shellfish, meat, foie gras, etc.
  4. There are three key constituents to a mousse: base, binder, and aerator.
  5. They may be hot or cold and are often squeezed through a piping bag onto some kind of platform to be used as hors d’oeuvres.

Fun Fact:

Savory mousse dishes were an 18th century French achievement. Dessert mousses (generally fruit mousses) began to appear much later, in the second half of the 19th century.

The first written record of chocolate mousse in the United States comes from a Food Exposition held at Madison Square Garden in New York City in 1892.

Chocolate mousse came into the public eye in the U.S. in the 1930s, about the time as chocolate pudding mixes were introduced.

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Today’s Food History

  • 1829 James Carrington of Connecticut patented a coffee mill.
  • 1845 William James Farrer was born. An Australian agriculturist, he developed several new cultivars of wheat.
  • 1860 The first Pony Express mail delivery service by horse and rider between St. Joseph, Missouri to Sacramento, California began. The 1,800 mile run took 10 days.
  • 1956 Elvis Presley sings ‘Heartbreak Hotel’ on the ‘Milton Berle Show.’ An estimated 25% of the American population tuned in to hear him.
  • 1959 The Coasters song ‘Charlie Brown’ is banned by the BBC because it refers to “throwin’ spitballs.” The ban only lasted 2 weeks.
  • 1974 The Super Tornado Outbreak. 148 tornadoes in 13 states in 26 hours. The world’s largest tornado outbreak in recorded history. It included six F5 tornadoes and 30 F4 tornadoes. The first tornado hit at 1 p.m. and the final tornado hit at 2 a.m. the following morning.
  • 1982 The temperature in Lamberton, Minnesota dropped from 78 degrees F to 7 degrees F in 24 hours.  The 71 degree drop in temperature is a Minnesota record.
  • 1985 The Brown Derby Restaurant in Hollywood, California closed after 57 years. Robert Cobb, owner of the Brown Derby, created the Cobb Salad there in 1936.
  • 2010 Students at a Utah high school created a replica of Van Gogh’s ‘Starry Night’ using 2 tons of Malt-O-Meal cereal.

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March 31 is Oysters on the Half Shell Day

Posted on March 31, 2014

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Interesting Food Facts about Oysters

  1. An oyster has a lifespan of over 100 years.
  2. The oyster has no head, no biting mouth parts and no arms or legs.
  3. An oysters two or three inches in diameter would probably be three to five years old.
  4. It takes about 25 to 28 months for oyster larvae to reach market size.
  5. Oysters feed year-round, though they feed less in winter because they need less energy.

Fun Fact:

All shelled fish should be alive when you eat them raw.  If they’re dead (closed), toss them back.

There are over 5,000 different species of oyster world wide.

 The flavor and color of oysters is influenced by the sand or sediment and the waters that they live in.

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Today’s Food History

  • 1814 John Lineback patented the cottonseed hulling machine.
  • 1848 William Waldorf Astor was born. William Waldorf Astor was a cousin of John Jacob Astor IV, the great grandson of John Jacob Astor. He built the Waldorf section (1893) of what would become the Waldorf Astoria (1897). The Empire State Building (1929) now stands on the site of the former hotel.
  • 1918 Daylight Savings Time went into effect in the U.S. for the first time.
  • 1989 Chefs from Japanese restaurants in New York have finally persuaded the FDA to allow them to import and serve fogu. The first shipment of Japanese blowfish (tora fugu) arrived today. The chefs had to attend special classes to protect their customers from poisoning.
  • 1946 G. Allan Nichol of the music group ‘The Turtles’ was born.
  • 2005 Frank Perdue president of Perdue Farms died today. He was the son of the company’s founder Arthur Perdue. Perdue is the 3rd largest poultry company in the U.S. 

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March 28 is National Black Forest Cake Day

Posted on March 28, 2014

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Interesting Food Facts about Black Forest Cake

  1. Typically, Black Forest cake consists of several layers of chocolate cake, with whipped cream and cherries between each layer.
  2. In some European traditions sour cherries are used both between the layers and for decorating the top.
  3. Traditionally, Kirschwasser (a clear liquor distilled from tart cherries) is added to the cake, although other liquors are also used
  4. The cake is named not directly after the Black Forest (Schwarzwald) mountain range in southwestern Germany but rather from the specialty liquor of that region, known as Schwarzwälder Kirsch(wasser) and distilled from tart cherries.
  5. Schwarzwälder Kirschtorte was first mentioned in writing in 1934.

Fun Fact:

The record for the world’s largest authentic black forest cake, weighing 3000 kg, was set at Europa Park, Germany on 16 July 2006, by K&D Bakery.

In the history of black forest cake, it was not in the form of a cake but instead as a dessert recipe.

The forests in “Hansel and Gretel”, “Snow White”, and “Rapunzel” are based on the Black Forest. They are all German fairy tales.

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Today’s Food History

  • 1797 The first U.S. patent for a ‘washing machine’ was issued (possibly to Nathaniel Briggs).  It was called a scrub board or wash board.
  • 1819 Sir Joseph William Bazalgette was born.  A British civil engineer, he designed the main sewer system for London.
  • 1897 Victor Mills was born.  He was a chemical engineer who worked for Proctor & Gamble.  He improved Duncan Hines cake mixes, improved Jif peanut butter, and invented Pampers disposable diapers.
  • 1968 ‘Whiskey On A Sunday’ was recorded by the Irish Rovers.
  • 1996 John Leonard submitted an order form along with ‘Pepsi Points’ and a check to Pepsi for a Harrier Jump Jet.  The Harrier had been featured in a Pepsi commercial as one of the items that could be redeemed for ‘points,’ or a combination of cash and points. Pepsi subsequently refused to send Leonard the Harrier Jump Jet (actual cost: $23 million).  Leonard then sued, and finally a judge ruled that the Harrier Jump Jet had obviously been mentioned in the promotion as a joke.

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National Food Service Worker’s Day

Posted on September 25, 2013

National Food Service Worker’s Day

Five Waiter Quotes

  • A Cannibal is a person who walks into a restaurant and orders a waiter.
  • A diplomat these days in nothing, but a head waiter who is allowed to sit down occasionally.
  • Epitaph for a dead waiter – God finally caught his eye.
  • I asked the waiter, ‘Is this milk fresh?’ He said, ‘Lady, three hours ago it was grass.’
  • I never taste the wine first in restaurants, I just ask the waiter to pour.

Today’s Food History

on this day in…

1777 Johann Heinrich Lambert died. He proved that was ‘pi’ that he proved was an irrational number.

1843 Melville Reuben Bissell was born. Bissell invented the carpet sweeper in 1876.

1879 The Cream Separator was patented.

1974 It is first reported that freon from aerosol cans is destroying the ozone layer above the earth.

1976 The largest dolphin caught with rod and reel weighed 87 pounds. It was caught off the coast of Costa Rica.

1985 William Cumming Rose died. An American biochemist, he researched amino acids, and established the importance of the 8 essential amino acids in human nutrition.

National Pralines Day

Posted on June 24, 2013

National Pralines Day

 

Today’s Food History

on this day in…

1374 An outbreak of Dancing Mania (sometimes known as ‘St. John’s Dance’) occurred in Aix-la-Chapelle, France. People were overcome with bouts of uncontrollable, manic dancing. Frothing at the mouth, screaming, and sexual frenzy were other symptoms. Ergot (fungus) poisoning (from grain) is now believed to have been the ultimate cause.

1532 Robert Dudley, the earl of Leicester, was born.
Hey diddle, diddle, the cat and the fiddle,
the cow jumped over the moon.
The little dog laughed to see such sport,
and the dish ran away with the spoon.

Dudley was Queen Elizabeth I’s first court favorite. She called him her ‘puppy.’ He is the dog who laughs in the nursery rhyme ‘Hey diddle diddle,’ when the dish runs away with the spoon, i.e., when Lady Elizabeth Throckmorton, one of the Queen’s ladies in waiting, ran away with the Queen’s taster, the Earl of Hereford, since he did not favor the tight reign Elizabeth kept on her court. He was also the step-father of her second lover, the Earl of Essex.

1817 The first coffee was planted in Hawaii on the Kona coast.

1839 Gustavus Franklin Swift was born. Founder of the meat-packing business, Swift & Co., the inventor of the refrigerated railway car, and the first to ship ‘dressed’ beef to eastern markets instead of live animals.

1895 Jack Dempsey was born. He is regarded as one of the greatest boxers of all time. He held the world heavyweight title from 1919 to 1926. He then became a successful restaurateur in New York City.

2003 Richard Pough died. An American ecologist he was the founding president of the Nature Conservancy and helped found the World Wildlife Fund. In 1945, he was one of the first to warn about the dangers of DDT to fish and birds.

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