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  • feedwordpress 09:01:14 on 2018/12/01 Permalink
    Tags: , , Food, , , , , , ,   

    “Three meals a day are a highly advanced institution”*… 

     

    breakfast_lunch_dinner_1050x700

    The typical American “breakfast, lunch, and dinner” pattern is a product of the Industrial Revolution.

    Early U.S. dining habits were shaped by those of English colonists. And, as Anne Murcott, a British sociologist specializing in food, writes, for centuries, up until about 1800, most English people ate two, not three, meals a day. The larger of these was often called dinner, but it wasn’t typically an evening meal. During the reign of Henry VII, from 1485 to 1509, the day’s big meal normally took place around 11 am.

    In both England and the U.S., dinner became the large afternoon meal for farm families—which is to say most families—in the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries. It might be preceded by breakfast—the meal to break the nighttime fast—and followed by some kind of light meal or meals, variously called supper or tea.

    Lunch is the newest addition to the triad of U.S. meals. Back in 1968, the English-language scholar Anne Wallace-Hadrill traced the etymology of the word itself, along with its close relation, “luncheon.” One possible origin of the words is from “lump.” A 1617 source mentions “eating a great lumpe of bread and butter with a lunchen of cheese.” In 1755, one dictionary writer defined lunch or luncheon as “as much food as one’s hand can hold,” but not as a specific meal. Somewhere in the first half of the nineteenth century, the word “lump” seems to have merged with “nuncheon,” a light midday meal (with the “nun” coming from “noon.”)

    As workers and kids left the farms for factories and schools over the course of the nineteenth and early twentieth century, eating patterns shifted. Workers and children might shove a lunch of bread into their pocket to eat during the day or return home for a quick luncheon, but dinner now had to wait for the end of the day, creating the set of mealtimes we know so well…

    The origin of the familiar breakfast-lunch-dinner triad: “Why Do Americans Eat Three Meals a Day?

    * E.C. Hayes, Introduction to the Study of Sociology (1913)

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    As we dig in, we might recall that it was on this date in 1999 that the Russian Duma (its legislature) voted 273-1 to pass an animal rights bill that prohibited Russians from eating their “animal companions”– their pets.  Shortly thereafter the newly-elected President of Russia, Vladimir Putin, vetoed the bill.

    group-of-pets-together-15229056 source

     

     
  • feedwordpress 08:01:55 on 2018/10/29 Permalink
    Tags: advertisements, , , Food, , , , , ,   

    “Tell me what you eat, and I will tell you what you are”*… 

     

     

    Food

    Food regularly plays a role in religious life, in forms that range from communion wine to Kahlua cheesecake…

    A sampling of 34 cloistered comestibles: “A Guide of Heavenly Cuisine.”

    * Anthelme Brillat-Savarin

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    As we devour with devotion, we might recall that it was on this date in 1993 that the first “Got Milk?” ad premiered.  Created by the advertising agency Goodby Silverstein & Partners for the California Milk Processor Board, it  was later licensed for use by milk processors and dairy farmers nationwide.  The campaign launched with the now-famous “Aaron Burr” television commercial, directed by Michael Bay.

     

     
  • feedwordpress 08:01:49 on 2018/10/07 Permalink
    Tags: , fish sticks, Food, , , , tuna, tuna fish sandwich,   

    “Enjoy every sandwich”*… 

     

    Tuna-Melt-2000x1657.jpg

    It is hard to think of a food more emblematic of America’s working-class spirit than the humble tuna sandwich. While the Spanish make their tuna bocadillo with piquillo peppers and sherry vinegar and the French have their pressed pan bagnat, made with high-quality jarred tuna and an array of vegetables in a real baguette, the American version is an object of convenience and thrift.

    Its assembly rests on three post–Industrial Revolution convenience foods: canned tuna, presliced wheat bread, and mayonnaise. The sandwich is portable, dependable, and eminently satisfying…

    How Japanese-Americans helped launch the California tuna-canning industry—and one of America’s most beloved sandwiches: “A Second Look at the Tuna Sandwich’s All-American History.

    * Warren Zevon

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    As we muse on a melt, we might spare a thought for Clarence Birdseye; he died on this date in 1956.  An  inventor, entrepreneur, and naturalist, and the founder of the modern frozen food industry.

    On Arctic trips as a field naturalist for the United States government, he noticed that freshly caught fish, when placed onto the Arctic ice and exposed to the icy wind and frigid temperatures, froze solid almost immediately. He learned, too, that the fish, when thawed and eaten, still had all its fresh characteristics. He concluded that quickly freezing certain items kept large crystals from forming, preventing damage to their cellular structure. In Sep 1922, Clarence organized his own company, Birdseye Seafoods, Inc., New York City, where he began processing chilled fish fillets.  He moved on to vegetables and other meats, then to the “fish stick,” along the way co-founding General Foods.  In the end, Birdseye had over 300 patents for creating and handling frozen food.

    Clarence_Birdseye source

     

     
  • feedwordpress 08:01:23 on 2018/09/22 Permalink
    Tags: , cornucopia, , Food, , ice cream cone, , Italo Marchiony, St. Louis World's Fair,   

    “The art of the cuisine, when fully mastered, is the one human capability of which only good things can be said”*… 

     

    cuisine-igredients

    Every cuisine, while sharing many common elements with others, uses a handful of ingredients that combine for unique flavors.

    With Chinese food, you often see soy sauce, green onion, and sesame oil. With Italian food, you often see garlic, parmesan cheese, and olive oil. Vietnamese food uses fish sauce. Korean food uses chili paste.

    As I venture into new cooking territories, it’s been fun to discover the flavor bombs from various cuisines. A lot of “where have you been all of my life” moments.

    So what are the ingredients that make each cuisine?…

    From the ever-illuminating Nathan Yau and his wonderful blog Flowing Data, a deep dive into the Yummly ingredients dataset (which contains ingredient lists for just under 40,000 recipes, from 20 cuisines– amounting to 6,714 ingredient)– the top five ingredients in 20 different cuisines: “Cuisine Ingredients.”

    * Friedrich Durrenmatt

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    As we read it and reap, we might recall that it was on this date in 1903 that Italo Marchiony applied for a patent for an ice cream cup mold. Marchiony is credited with inventing the ice cream cone in 1896, when he introduced it in New York City.  Initially, he folded warm waffles into a cup shape.   He then developed the 2-piece mold that would make 10 cups at a time. (U.S. patent No. 746,971 was granted on Dec 15, 1903).

    Several other claimants introduced “ice cream cones” at the 1904 Louisiana Purchase Exposition, known as the St. Louis World’s Fair.  While they weren’t the inventors of the cone, it was from the time of the Fair that the edible “cornucopia,” a cone made from a rolled waffle, vaulted into popularity in the United States.

    Marchioni source

     

     
  • feedwordpress 08:01:32 on 2018/08/10 Permalink
    Tags: cookbooks, , , , Food, Francatelli, , novelty, ,   

    “Every restaurant needs to have a point of view”*… 

     

    chili bowl

    Launched in 1931 by former amateur boxer Art Whizin, the Chili Bowl chain had 22 outposts at its peak. Each building was round and shaped like a chili bowl with 26 stools around a circular counter where diners could get the signature dish: an open-faced burger blanketed with chili. This 1937 photo shows the original Chili Bowl, located at 3012 Crenshaw Boulevard.

    One stop on a wonderful tour of La La Land’s most exceptional eateries; see them all at: “LA’s Awesome History Of Weird, Food-Shaped Restaurants.”

    * Danny Meyer

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    As we muse on the mimetic, we might sparea thought for Charles Elmé Francatelli; he died on this date in 1876.  A Italian chef working in England, renown in his time, he was chef to Queen Victoria and Prince Albert for a time, chef of the St. James Club, among other prestigious postings .  But he is probably better remembered for his best-selling cookbooks, The Modern Cook (1845), A Plain Cookery Book for the Working ClassesThe Cook’s Guide and Housekeeper’s & Butler’s Assistant, and The Royal English and Foreign Confectionery Book.

    Charles_Elme_Francatelli source

     

     

     
  • feedwordpress 08:01:34 on 2018/07/06 Permalink
    Tags: Food, graham cracker, , , interstate highways, Sylvester Graham, , ,   

    “Life is a highway”*… 

     

    28242668477_23c3fde26a_z

    62 years ago, there was no Interstate Highway System. Now, the system covers nearly 50,000 miles in the US. The growth of the US interstate is stunning to behold when you chart it through time…

    A quick and fascinating history at “The Evolution Of The US Interstate Through Time, Mapped“; explore Geotab‘s interactive timeline here.

    * Tom Cochrane

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    As we hit the road, we might send healthy birthday greetings to Sylvester Graham; he was born on this date in 1794.  A presbyterian minister, he is better remembered as a  dietary reformer who preached vegetarianism, supported the temperance movement, and emphasized eating whole-grain bread.  Though he neither invented nor profited from his legacy, his sermons inspired his followers to create graham flour, graham bread and the graham cracker.

    43061686532_32ea6a930f_o source

     

     
  • feedwordpress 08:01:16 on 2018/06/19 Permalink
    Tags: Anthony Bourdain, Food, , , Juneteenth, ,   

    “Your body is not a temple, it’s an amusement park. Enjoy the ride.”*… 

    Kobe sliders: “I’m waiting to see the end of the Kobe slider. I’d be really happy to see that gone. The Kobe slider is an indication of a douche economy that’s threatening to me personally. It’s like bottle service at the nightclub; it’s a societal ill. It’s a clear example of nothing being added to the slider experience by using Kobe beef other than the price. No one who orders a Kobe slider wants the unctuous, fatty experience of ordering a Kobe steak. What they want is bragging rights in front of their princes of douchedom around them so they can all high five. It’s part of the ‘bro’ culture I find troubling.”

    Fond remembrance…  one of twenty provocative peeves at “Here’s an abbreviated list of everything that Anthony Bourdain hates.”

    * Anthony Bourdain

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    As we prepare for the ride, we might pause to think some celebratory thoughts:  today is Juneteenth.

    Though the Emancipation Proclamation was issued on September 22, 1862 (effective January 1, 1863), word was slow to spread.  On June 19, 1865, Union General Gordon Granger, who’d arrived  in Galveston, Texas, with 2,000 federal troops  to take possession of the state and enforce the emancipation of its slaves, read “General Order No. 3” from a local balcony:

    The people of Texas are informed that, in accordance with a proclamation from the Executive of the United States, all slaves are free. This involves an absolute equality of personal rights and rights of property between former masters and slaves, and the connection heretofore existing between them becomes that between employer and hired labor. The freedmen are advised to remain quietly at their present homes and work for wages. They are informed that they will not be allowed to collect at military posts and that they will not be supported in idleness either there or elsewhere.

    Former slaves in Galveston celebrated in the streets; Juneteenth observances began across Texas the following year– and are now recognized as State Holidays by 41 states.

    Ashton Villa in Glaveston, from whose front balcony the Emancipation Proclamation was read on June 19, 1865 (source)

     Juneteenth celebration in Austin, c.1900 (source)

    Juneteenth has become a popular time for family reunions and gatherings. As with most social events, food takes center stage. Juneteenth is often commemorated by barbecues and the traditional drink – Strawberry Soda – and dessert – Strawberry Pie. Other red foods such as red rice (rice with tomatoes), watermelon and red velvet cake are also popular.  The red foods commemorate the blood that was spilled during the days of slavery.

     
  • feedwordpress 08:01:19 on 2018/06/14 Permalink
    Tags: , , Eddie Cantor, Food, , , Jimmy Durante, Nathan's, , Sophie Tucker,   

    “A recipe is a story that ends with a good meal”*… 

     

    A recursive recipe is one where ingredients in the recipe can be replaced by another recipe. The more ingredients you replace, the more that the recipe is made truly from scratch

    Dive into some of your favorites (like chocolate chip cookies, above; larger images on the site)– fractal fun at “Recursive Recipes“!

    * Frank Conroy

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    As we noodle on “natural,” we might send tasty birthday greetings to Nathan Handwerker; he was born on this date in 1892.  In 1916, with $300 borrowed from friends, he and his wife Ida started a hot dog stand on Coney Island– and launched what evolved into Nathan’s Famous restaurants and the related Nathan’s retail product line.

    An emigrant from Eastern Europe, Handwerker found a job slicing bread rolls for Feltman’s German Gardens, a Coney Island restaurant that sold franks (hot dogs) for 10 cents each.  Encouraged by a singing waiter there and his piano player– Eddie Cantor and Jimmy Durante– Handwerker struck out on his own, selling his hot dogs (spiced with Ida’s secret recipe) for a nickel.  At the outset of his new venture, he reputedly hired young men to wear white coats with stethoscopes around their necks to stand near his carts and eat his hot dogs, giving the impression of purity and cleanliness.

    Handwerker named his previously unnamed hot dog stand Nathan’s Hot Dogs in 1921 after Sophie Tucker, then a singer at the nearby Carey Walsh’s Cafe, made a hit of the song “Nathan, Nathan, Why You Waitin?”

     source

     

     
  • feedwordpress 08:01:51 on 2018/06/13 Permalink
    Tags: , Food, , Jimmy Dean, macaroni and cheese, , ,   

    “All food is comfort food… maybe I just like to chew”*… 

     

    To understand the evolution of macaroni and cheese is to realize that pursuit of the “cheapest protein possible” has been a longstanding quest of the American food system. At times, cheese itself has shared a similar trajectory. Cheesemaking, which began 10,000 years ago, was originally about survival for a farm family or community: taking a very perishable protein (milk) and transforming it into something less perishable (cheese) so that there would be something to eat at a later date. Many of us today think of cheese in the context of tradition, flavor, or saving family farms, but a basic goal—whether a producer is making farm-made cheddar or concocting the cheeseless dairy product Velveeta—has always been getting as much edible food from a gallon of milk as possible…

    Macaroni and cheese has been served as long as there has been a United States of America, but in a 20th-century economy driven by convenience packaging and industrialization, it was elevated to an ideal American food: Pasta and processed cheese are very cheap to make and easy to ship and store, and they certainly fill up a belly…

    The story of a the versatile dish, popularized by Thomas Jefferson, that satisfied the quest for “the cheapest protein possible”: “A Brief History of America’s Appetite for Macaroni and Cheese.”

    * Lewis Black

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    As we dig in, we might spare a thought for Jimmy Ray Dean; he died on this date in 2010.  First successful as a country singer (he’s in the Country Music Hall of Fame), he later found success as an actor (as Fess Parker’s sidekick in Daniel Boone), a television host (The Jimmy Dean Show, which introduced Jim Henson and the Muppets to the wider world), and as a businessman.  With his brother Don, he founded Jimmy Dean Sausage Company, for which he served for many years as its TV pitchman.

    Jimmy on the right

    source

     

     
  • feedwordpress 09:01:11 on 2018/02/15 Permalink
    Tags: , Cyrus McCormick, Food, , mechanical reaper, , nutritious foods,   

    “First we eat, then we do everything else”*… 

     

    Imagine the ideal food. One that contains all the nutrients necessary to meet, but not exceed, our daily nutrient demands. If such a food existed, consuming it, without eating any other, would provide the optimal nutritional balance for our body.

    Such a food does not exist. But we can do the next best thing.

    The key is to eat a balance of highly nutritional foods, that when consumed together, do not contain too much of any one nutrient, to avoid exceeding daily recommended amounts.

    Scientists studied more than 1,000 foods, assigning each a nutritional score. The higher the score, the more likely each food would meet, but not exceed your daily nutritional needs, when eaten in combination with others…

    See the top 100, ranked at “The world’s most nutritious foods.”

    * M. F. K. Fisher

    ###

    As we help ourselves, we might send bounteous birthday greetings to Cyrus Hall McCormick; he was born on this date in 1809.  Widely credited as the inventor of the first mechanical reaper, he was in fact just one of several contributing to its development.  His more singular achievement as a creator was his success in the development of a modern company, with manufacturing, marketing, and a sales force to market his products.  His McCormick Harvesting Machine Company became part of the International Harvester Company in 1902.

    Interestingly, the grains that McCormick’s reapers helped harvest appear nowhere on the list…

     source

     

     
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