Foods of choice: Pol Pot enjoyed venison, wild boar, snake, fresh fruit, brandy, and Chinese wine. He also reportedly liked cobra stew.
Pol Pot and his communist Khmer Rouge movement in Cambodia orchestrated a brutal, anti-intellectual "social engineering program" in which up to 2 million Cambodians were executed or overworked or starved to death.
Dinner etiquette: Pol Pot enjoyed luxurious meals while those suffering under his regime were allowed only water with a sprinkle of rice grains.
The Most Famous Women Foodies in History
Throughout International Women’s Month, Chowhound is sharing stories from and about a wealth of women entrepreneurs, businesses, chefs, and cookbook writers who have all found success in the food space. Here, some of the most famous female food lovers in history, and how they made their mark.
Throughout our gastronomic history, women’s appetites and appreciation for cuisine have certainly matched those of men. Yet, they have been consistently overshadowed. While the art of entertaining was left to the fairer sex, the enjoyment of eating—especially in large quantities—was deemed to be a more masculine endeavor. But one look at women in today’s media, from cookbook authors to chefs to bloggers, goes to show they contribute as much to modern food culture as men.
In order to set the record straight, we’ve come up with a list of some of the most famous women foodies in history.
The Queen of the Nile was not only a keen ruler, but also a shrewd diplomat. She would entertain foreign guests with lavish feasts, featuring cuisine made with ingredients that came from the far reaches of her empire. Platters were laden with fish, wild game, roast fowl, grains, legumes, vegetables, fruits, and sweets. Beer and wine flowed freely, and servants ensured every glass was kept full. According to Pliny the Elder, when Marc Antony challenged Cleopatra to host the most extravagant banquet in history, she complied by dissolving her pearl earring—worth the equivalent of millions today—in a cup of vinegar and then drinking it. Well played, Cleopatra.
Try making Egyptian kushari in her honor image courtesy of Shutterstock
Catherine de Medici
In addition to bringing several Florentine chefs with her to France when she married Henry II, de Medici ushered in the use of forks, formal table settings, and dining etiquette. She is also credited with introducing new ingredients—including olive oil, white beans, artichokes, truffles, and sweets, such as mousses and sorbets—to France, and is said to have inspired a renaissance in French cuisine. While her influence may have been slightly exaggerated, she certainly made her mark on the French palate.
Women were once forbidden from eating artichokes, so you know what you have to do image by Chowhound
Catherine the Great
The Empress of Russia, aka Catherine II or Catherine the Great, was as politically savvy as they come. A stickler for routine and living what was considered to be a healthy lifestyle for the 18th century, she consumed the same simple fare—coffee in the morning, an apple or two in the evening—each day. However, lunch was the largest meal of the day and usually featured a combination of Russian and foreign dishes. The tsarina also went out of her way to honor her frequent guests by serving them their favorite dish, no matter how extravagant, and is credited with establishing the custom of taking afternoon tea in Russia.
Host your own afternoon tea in homage image courtesy of Shutterstock
Empress Dowager Cixi
This concubine-turned-empress was the last ruler of the Qing dynasty in China. She had a refined palate and demanding persona, and kept both an Imperial kitchen and Western kitchen within the Forbidden City, employing hundreds of cooking staff. It’s said that she was served over 120 dishes at every meal. The kitchen was divided into sections that specialized in making a variety of delicacies each day, including noodles, steamed buns, dumplings, wok-fried dishes, meats, vegetables, pastries, and sweets. Only the finest ingredients were used, and some of Cixi’s favorite dishes, such as individually stuffed bean sprouts (yes, you read that correctly), were made using painstakingly tedious techniques.
Skip the bean sprouts and stuff some dumplings instead image courtesy of Pixabay
It should come as no surprise that French author Colette was a true gourmand, since food features so prominently in her books. Her prose drips with sensuous descriptions of young lovers expressing their desire through the exchange of edible gifts, like Champagne and candy. But Colette wasn’t just a hedonist. During World War II, she made a living writing articles for women’s magazine Marie-Claire, including practical recipe advice on how to make rationed ingredients, such as milk and eggs, stretch farther. After the war, she struck up a friendship with Raymond Oliver, the chef and owner of Le Grande Véfour, a restaurant in the Palais-Royale, where you can still find the seat named for her at her favorite corner table.
Clafoutis is a tres French way to use up milk and eggs image by Chowhound
Alice B. Toklas
Perhaps best known as the life partner of famous American author Gertrude Stein, Toklas was an accomplished writer in her own right. Growing up in an upper middle class German-Jewish family in San Francisco, Toklas was used to dining on French cuisine. But it wasn’t until she lived in Paris with Stein that she became familiar with regional French cooking. Toklas spent years collecting recipes and learning different techniques, often entertaining famous friends and artists, like Picasso. Eventually, she wrote “The Alice B. Toklas Cook Book,” which includes a foreword by M. F. K. Fisher and a recipe for hashish fudge.
Classic chocolate fudge (hashish not included) image by Chowhound
The Alice B. Toklas Cook Book, $11.41 on Amazon
According to Guadalupe Rivera, Kahlo’s stepdaughter and co-author of “Frida’s Fiestas: Recipes and Reminiscences of Life with Frida Kahlo,” the famous artist considered being a good cook part of her identity not only as a Mexican woman, but also as a wife to fellow artist, Diego Rivera. Kahlo apparently loved to entertain, often inviting friends and family over to celebrate birthdays and popular holidays, such as the Day of the Dead. From prickly pear to pulque, fresh corn tamales to flan, Kahlo reveled in her role as a consummate host and accomplished cook.
We feel Frida would definitely have approved of edible flowers image courtesy of Shutterstock
Frida's Fiestas: Recipes and Reminiscences of Life with Frida Kahlo, $24.80 on Amazon
Check out some other famous female food personalities via our favorite classic women-authored cookbooks (not to mention more contemporary titles), our profile of the women behind Coolhaus, and our exploration of the most significant women in American food history.
Adolf Hitler – Petits Poussins à la Hambourg
Photo Credit: Graham Manning
It is often misremembered that Hitler was a lifelong vegetarian by choice. But Hitler only switched to a bland diet of mashed potatoes and celery broth in an effort to combat his lifelong digestive issues that included chronic flatulence and constipation. (Could this be the real reason he and wife Eva Braun commit suicide in their bunker?)
Before he gave up meat for gastrointestinal problems, he expressed a particular fondness for the exotic dish Petits Poussins à la Hambourg . It’s this preparation of a fledgling pigeon or squab stuffed with tongue, liver, and pistachio nuts that should actually go down in history books as Der Fuehrer's favorite meal. Sorry, carrots.
The Long History of Food—And Celebrity Chefs
Food: It feeds the soul, fuels the body, affects the environment, inspires artists, influences politics and impacts just about every part of our lives. It has been a subject of fascination and entertainment for centuries, reflected in the beauty of a Dutch still life, the pageantry of a royal banquet, or even the latest episode of Top Chef.
While the subject of food may be fascinating to gourmands and gluttons alike, it turns out that the study of the history of food&mdashand the numerous social, cultural, and political forces that shape our palette&mdashis a relatively new field.
Paul Freedman, the Chester D. Tripp Professor of History and chairman of the Program in the History of Science and Medicine, specializes in medieval history and teaches the only undergraduate course at Yale dedicated to the history of cuisine. He began teaching "The History of Food" in 2009, and his class draws students from disciplines ranging from environmental science to engineering to history.
I spoke with Freedman about celebrity chefs, medieval banquets, what the history of food can tell us about our culture, and his favorite cookbooks.
Why should we study the history of food?
Food can tell us a lot about a society in the past and the present, including what people lived on and how they managed to create a food supply, often in difficult circumstances. A number of major historical events have been dictated by changing tastes in food, like the "career" of sugar.
Tea in China is not drunk with sugar. It was the Europeans who decided to put sugar in beverages like tea, chocolate and coffee. In order to increase the global supply of sugar, they established plantations, particularly in the Caribbean and Brazil, and they brought Africans over to be enslaved workers. So one of the most cataclysmic movements of people in the history of the world is the result of what might be seen as a frivolous or minor fashion.
Similarly, it was the quest for spices in the Middle Ages that dictated attempts to find their source in India, the voyages of Vasco da Gama and Columbus.
How did you become interested in the subject?
I became interested in the history of food through work on a book about spices in the Middle Ages. I wanted to understand why these expensive products were so popular.
At that time I had a fellowship at the New York Public Library, which had an exhibition of menus in the collection. They have something like 40,000 menus, mostly but by no means all from New York City, and I was fascinated by them, their design and how much the food offered seems to have changed over time. I became interested in food in its modern guise.
In 2005, I was contacted by an editor in London for the publisher Thames and Hudson, who asked me if I'd edit a book on the history of food. My first response, which is typically academic, was, "Actually, that's not my field." But I was intrigued. The project encouraged me to think outside the Middle Ages, and I agreed to do it. The book, Food: The History of Taste (2007), spans prehistory to present times.
You specialize in medieval history. Can you tell us a little bit about food in the Middle Ages?
Food in the Middle Ages was closer to Middle Eastern food today than to modern European cuisine. It featured a lot of spices, was rather perfumed with ingredients such as rose-water, and sweet, with sugar in main courses. Dried fruits and pine nuts were also main course ingredients.
The most popular meats included game, and pork. Meat had prestige. The medieval Catholic Church had over 100 fast days per year, so there was also a lot of fish. Most people ate herring or cod or something that could be dried or salted for preservation.
The nature of banqueting was to create excess. The aristocracy had 50- or 100-course meals with a lot of color and pageantry. One course might be a chicken with a banner riding on the back of a glazed orange suckling pig. The point of being wealthy was to show off what no one else had, but in that era there was less food waste than now. Somebody would eat it all, like the kitchen staff, other servants, their families and eventually the poor. They didn't have our laws against giving away cooked food.
Peasants probably had a more balanced diet than the nobles, eating more vegetables and grains. It's wrong to think peasants were on the brink of starvation all of the time. There was also a very prosperous commercial class that imitated the upper class in terms of food.
How is our food different today?
The food of the Middle Ages was very different from modern European food, which is based on French innovations of the 17th and 18th centuries.
Sauces in the main courses are now meant to intensify flavors, rather than cover them. A typical French sauce is a distillate and flavored with things like shallots, herbs, or truffles, rather than cinnamon or nutmeg. Such spices, along with sugar, are exiled to the realm of desserts.
All of the traditional French cooking is a reaction against the Middle Ages. The French chefs of the 17th and 18th centuries ridiculed earlier food as childish and inedible, based on spectacle and not on flavor.
There is a great emphasis in French culinary text on simplicity, not literally plainness, but in terms of making the flavor of the primary product come through. This remains the case today. Nouvelle cuisine in the 1970s was the same kind of reaction against over-complication or poor quality disguised by multiple ingredients.
Are there any dishes from the Middle Ages that you would like to see make a comeback?
I don't understand why game hasn't come back. The United States is teeming with deer. There are certain species of wild animals&mdashof which there are a lot and quite edible&mdashthat people ate in the past and for some reason don't now.
Also, various kinds of ducks and pheasants. There are things that people loved in 19th-century America that are no longer common, like terrapin, or canvasback ducks, which were prestige dishes in the 1800s.
You've lectured on the origins of celebrity chefs. How long have they been around, and why do we celebrate them?
Like any art or craft, there are some people who do it better than others. They achieve fame because nobody else seems to be able to make certain dishes so well. In ancient Rome we know of one surviving cookbook attributed to Marcus Gavius Apicius. There were also great chefs who worked for the Islamic caliphs in Baghdad, emperors in China, and officials in the Ottoman Empire.
One of the first celebrity chefs in the Western world that we know anything about is Guillaume Tirle, known as Taillevent, a cook in the court of France in the 14th century. He was ennobled, and his name was put on a collection of recipes, Le Viandier. To this day, one of the greatest restaurants in Paris is called Taillevent, so his name is a household word.
There's a difference, however, between celebrity chefs today, like Dan Barber or René Redzepi, and those from even a few decades ago. Nobody asked Taillevent, Antonin Carême, Auguste Escoffier, or Alexis Soyer their opinions on the environment or social issues. The idea that chefs are supposed to take leadership in these areas is a new phenomenon.
When did the first restaurants open?
The first restaurants arose in Paris before the French Revolution, around 1760 and 1770. The word comes from "restoration," and they were places to get nourishment for hypercondriacal or "delicate" people. As these places evolved, they served other expensive and fashionable health foods for the middle and upper classes.
Part of what defined a restaurant was that you could get food at any time, unlike at an inn or table d'hôte. It wasn't done family style. You could sit down and dine with the people you came with, and choose what to order.
Restaurants in the United States start around 1830. Delmonico's is considered the first real restaurant in New York City. It lasted from 1835 to 1923. The original closed with prohibition, as many restaurants did.
What must naturally follow restaurants are food critics. Was that also a French invention?
Alexander Balthazzar Grimod de la Reynière was the first food critic&mdashhe was a strange character&mdashand wrote the multi-volume L'Almanach des Gourmandes in the early 19th century.
Restaurant reviews in the United States came much later, and in a way, not until Craig Claiborne, who was food editor and restaurant critic for The New York Times for many years. Up until then, reviews were really puff pieces that were essentially advertising.
Is food a more complicated subject today than it was even 50 years ago?
It's always been complicated. There has always been a difference between what the upper class and the lower class eats. For a very long time America has been unusual because of the popularity of immigrants' food. But we've tended to emphasize variety over quality. We'll offer poor-quality burgers, but "have it your way." It's hard to do quality in an industrial economy.
So it's always been complicated, but people now are more inclined to think it's a subject worth studying. The reason it has not been studied very much from this point of view is that it's both ubiquitous and invisible. You have to make food all the time, and it therefore it seems a necessity. But it's still considered by some people a dubious academic subject because it's both everywhere and nowhere.
Do you like to cook?
Yes, I do. I wouldn't say that I'm a very skilled cook, but I do most of the cooking in the family.
What are some of your favorite cookbooks?
Like many people, there are three or four cookbooks that I use all the time. One is by Viana La Place and Evan Kleiman, Cucina Fresca, which features Italian food that can be served at room temperature.
I still like the Pierre Franey books that came out when I was first married, called The 60-Minute Gourmet and More Sixty-Minute Gourmet. I love the fact that in the 1980s, an hour appeared to be fast. Today nobody would boast that it only took them 60 minutes to make dinner.
I like the Plenty and Jerusalem cookbooks by Yotam Ottolenghi. And I like to make Chinese food and comfort food.
What's next for you?
My real interest in terms of my own food-related scholarship is American restaurants. I'm working on a book called Ten Restaurants that Changed America, which is due out in 2016 or early 2017.
Amy Athey McDonald is a senior communications officer for arts, humanities, and social sciences at Yale University. This article first appeared on the Yale News site.
The Favorite Movies of 30 Famous People
From classic comedies to cowboy-filled westerns, celebrities play favorites when it comes to movies, too. Here are some of the favorite films of politicians, musicians, actors, directors, and other celebrities.
1. BARACK OBAMA // THE GODFATHER (1972) AND THE GODFATHER: PART II (1974)
When Katie Couric asked then-presidential-candidate Barack Obama what his favorite movie is, he replied, "Oh, I think it would have to be The Godfather. One and Two. Three not so much. That saga—I love that movie."
2. RONALD REAGAN // HIGH NOON (1952)
Reagan appreciated Will Kane's dedication to duty and law in Fred Zinnemann's High Noon. (Reagan was also rumored to have been a fan of Frank Capra's It's a Wonderful Life.)
3. RICHARD NIXON // PATTON (1970)
Nixon's preference for Patton was mentioned in a 1970 TIME article: "The martial epic Patton so stirs Richard Nixon that he has seen the film at least twice." According to American Experience: Nixon on PBS, "Richard Nixon loved the movie Patton and watched it again and again in the White House." The Telegraph reported that Nixon "urged aides to see the film and became, in the words of Secretary of State William Rogers, a 'walking ad' for it. He screened it three times in the weeks before the US invasion of Cambodia in April 1970 . " Nixon's love for Patton was also mentioned in Woodward and Bernstein's 2005 book, The Final Days.
4. BILL CLINTON // HIGH NOON (1952)
Clinton was such a fan of the Western that he apparently screened the film a record 17 times at the White House.
5. GEORGE W. BUSH // FIELD OF DREAMS (1989)
According to a May 2001 article in The Atlantic, "Bush's favorite movie is Field of Dreams, which made him cry, he once said, because it reminded him of playing catch in the back yard with his father—a pretty fair ballplayer himself once."
6. DWIGHT EISENHOWER // HIGH NOON (1952)
Like to many other presidents, Eisenhower was reportedly a big fan of High Noon, screening it several times at the White House (though not quite as many times as Clinton).
7. JOHN MCCAIN // VIVA ZAPATA! (1952)
During his presidential campaign, John McCain was asked about his favorite film by Katie Couric. His response: "Viva Zapata . It's a heroic tale of a person who sacrificed everything for what he believed in and there's some of the most moving scenes in that movie that I've ever seen."
8. DAN QUAYLE // FERRIS BUELLER'S DAY OFF (1986)
During the 1990 presidential campaign, Quayle declared Ferris Bueller his favorite movie, with the explanation, "It reminded me of my time in school."
9. JUSTIN BIEBER // STEP BROTHERS (2008)
In 2010, Bieber provided US Weekly with a list of "25 Things You Don't Know About Me." #17: "Step Brothers is my favorite movie."
10. JENNIFER LOPEZ // WEST SIDE STORY (1961)
During a West Side Story-themed photo shoot for Vanity Fair in 2009, Lopez revealed that she watched the classic musical "37 times" growing up. She identifies with Anita, explaining: "I never wanted to be that wimpy Maria. I wanted to be Anita, who danced her way to the top."
11. GEORGE HARRISON // THE PRODUCERS (1968)
Harrison reportedly liked the film so much that it inspired him to become a producer himself.
12. JOHN TRAVOLTA // A MAN AND A WOMAN (1966)
IMDb.com lists Travolta's favorite movie as A Man And A Woman, also noting that he was partial to Yankee Doodle Dandy (1946) as a child.
13. HEATH LEDGER // THE WIZARD OF OZ (1939)
Ledger favored the classic film because, he stated, "It was the only film my parents allowed me to see as a kid."
14. TOM HANKS // 2001: A SPACE ODYSSEY (1968)
Hanks has frequently discussed his love for Kubrick's classic, including at a forum for the film's 40th anniversary, where he said of the movie, "You can look at it over and over and ponder its meaning," he once said. According to a Tom Hanks fan site, the actor has seen 2001 approximately 40 times.
15. BILL PAXTON // SPLENDOR IN THE GRASS (1961) AND HAROLD AND MAUDE (1971)
In a 2006 interview with TV Guide, Paxton said, "You've got to understand something about me and my career: I'm a romantic in life philosophy, in how I look at the world, the beauty of nature, of relationships. But I never got to do those roles. In my twenties, I wanted to be in a Splendor in the Grass." The late actor listed both Splendor in the Grass and Harold and Maude for Cindy Pearlman's 2007 book You Gotta See This.
16. SALMA HAYEK // WILLY WONKA & THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY (1971)
The "Times Topics" page for Hayek at The New York Times website reported: "At 6, she was smitten with acting after seeing Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory."
17. VIN DIESEL // GONE WITH THE WIND (1939)
In 2006, ELLE asked Diesel, "Have you ever watched a movie and identified with a character romantically?" The actor replied, "Clark Gable in Gone With the Wind. Here's this guy saying, 'I may be rough around the edges, but I'm the better man for you, and you're still locked over there with pretty boy.'" He also listed it as his favorite movie for Pearlman's You Gotta See This.
18. TIM ALLEN //THE SEVEN SAMURAI (1954)
AFI interviewed celebrities about their films in a lead-up to their "100 Years, 100 Movies" event in 2007. In his interview, Allen named The Seven Samurai as his favorite.
19. OWEN WILSON // PUNCH-DRUNK LOVE (2002) AND THE INSIDER (1999)
Wilson reportedly stated, "I loved Punch-Drunk Love. It revved me up to write something. It's a simple story, but it proves it's all in the details." He also told Glen Whipp of the Los Angeles Daily News, "I loved Punch-Drunk Love, The Insider, and United 93."
20. ANTONIO BANDERAS // TOUCH OF EVIL (1958) AND THE MAGNIFICENT AMBERSONS (1942)
Banderas is an Orson Welles fan. He listed Touch of Evil as one of his five favorite films (as well as the ever-popular Lawrence of Arabia and The Godfather) for Rotten Tomatoes, and he listed it again for Pearlman's You Gotta See This, along with another Welles film, The Magnificent Ambersons.
21. JULIANNE MOORE // ROSEMARY'S BABY (1968)
For The New York Times' "Watching the Movies With" feature, Moore picked Rosemary's Baby, stating, "This is the first movie that came to mind when I thought of what I wanted to watch," and "Wow, I love the beginning of this movie."
22. CHARLIZE THERON // I COULD GO ON SINGING (1963)
For You Gotta See This, Theron told Pearlman that I Could Go On Singing is "the best movie I've ever seen," and then said—twice—"It's my favorite film of all time."
23. RICHARD GERE // THE PASSENGER (1975)
For You Gotta See This, Gere told Pearlman that The Passenger "has always been" one of his favorites.
24. UMA THURMAN // PILLOW TALK (1959)
For Pearlman's You Gotta See This, Thurman revealed her favorite, explaining: "All my life I wanted to be Doris Day. One of my favorites is Pillow Talk. It’s a light, breezy romp of a film that’s so much fun to watch. I love that Doris didn’t play anyone but herself in her movies."
25. REESE WITHERSPOON // OVERBOARD (1987)
Witherspoon disclosed this factoid during the 84th Annual Academy Awards telecast in 2012.
26. DENNIS QUAID // LAWRENCE OF ARABIA (1962)
In an interview with US Weekly, Quaid said, "Lawrence of Arabia is, for me, a perfect movie."
27. SETH MACFARLANE // THE SOUND OF MUSIC (1964)
When interviewed by IGN in 2003, MacFarlane was asked what his favorite film is. His answer: "I gotta give it to The Sound of Music. I'm sorry. I know that's, like, a lame answer, but I f***in' love The Sound of Music. It's The Sound of Music . It's not like it's some obscure independent film. There are those who would be expecting me to say Caddyshack—which is number two."
28. ORSON WELLES // CITY LIGHTS (1931)
Of the Chaplin film, Welles once said, ". but you must see City Lights. You’ll see Chaplin in City Lights."
29. STEVEN SPIELBERG // LAWRENCE OF ARABIA (1962)
Spielberg helped restore Lawrence of Arabia for a 2000 DVD release in the accompanying documentary, "A Conversation with Steven Spielberg," the director discusses the impact the movie had on his life and why it's his favorite film.
30. ROGER EBERT // LA DOLCE VITA (1960)
In a 2008 column for The Chicago Sun-Times, the late critic asked himself, "What is my favorite film?" The answer: "Right now, this moment, the answer that would spring most quickly to mind is Fellini's La Dolce Vita (1960). I've seen it, oh, at least 25 times, maybe more. It doesn't get old for me. . I've grown so worked up just writing this paragraph that I want to slide in the DVD and start watching immediately."
No list of food would be complete without the inclusion of bread—the most basic of foods that’s also a symbol of civilization and agriculture.
The first traces of bread were found in the current Egypt territories more than 10,000 years ago. Since then, it has been reimagined in various forms across the globe. This makes it one of the top 10 most eaten foods in the world, perhaps even the most eaten, period.
Although most people, when thinking of bread, imagine it being made from wheat, it can actually be made from almost any kind of grain.
In different cultures, bread is made from corn, barley, rice, millet, and amaranth.
Although the earliest civilization used mainly wheat cultures, rice has been around for around 5,000 years. According to some estimates, rice has fed more people than any other type of grain.
Over the centuries, rice has become an integral part of some of the most popular cuisines in the world. It has been used across cultures in Asia, Europe, Africa, and the Americas.
The reason why rice has been so prominently used around the world is its versatility—it can grow in almost any conditions and thus has fed many generations of people in various climate zones.
Whether it’s the famous risotto in Italy, nasi goreng in Indonesia, or tahdig in Iran, each culture has found its own way to bring out the flavor and qualities that rice has to offer.
For many people, eggs are an integral part of a full and healthy breakfast.
But while the omelet or a boiled egg may seem like Western dishes, eggs have been used across the world in various shapes and forms for almost 10,000 years, including about 5,000 years in Egypt, and 3,000 years in Europe.
Throughout history, humans have valued the nutritional value and versatility that eggs provided, cooking them, adding them to various other dishes, or even eating them raw.
In China, you can enjoy an egg in the form of an egg flower soup, while the Japanese have the intricate tamagoyaki. Eggs are appreciated in all corners of the world (and for good reason).
When it comes to the most popular food in the world, the list we explored above only begins to scratch the surface of the diversity and ingenuity that different cultures have when preparing their meals.
If you want to not only learn about these foods but discover them on your own, the best way to do that is to try famous dishes in the places where they originated.
Zegrahm offers adventure travel expeditions to all of the world’s continents where you will not only experience the local culture and explore famous and remote landmarks but will also get to taste authentic cuisines that cannot be found anywhere else.
Want to learn more? Call us at 800.628.8747, get in touch with our contact form, or visit our destinations page to see all the experiences that Zegrahm has to offer.
FOOD HISTORY TIMELINE1941 to 1945
1941 Roy J. Plunkett received a U.S. patent for Teflon. He had discovered it by accident in 1938.
1941 At the 13th Academy Awards, 'The Grapes of Wrath' won awards for Best Director (John Ford) and Best Supporting Actress (Jane Darwell as Ma Joad). Based on John Steinbeck's Pulitzer Prize winning novel of the same name dealing with the Great Depression, tenant farmers, migrant workers, the dust bowl and California.
1941 The first issue of Gourmet magazine was published. (The last issue will be published in November, 2009)
1941 American author Sherwood Anderson supposedly swallowed a toothpick or a swizzle stick while at a cocktail party in the Panama Canal Zone, and died of peritonitis.
1941 'All That Meat And No Potatoes' was recorded by jazz musician Fats Waller.
1941 The original Elsie the Cow died. Elsie the cow was originally a cartoon character appearing in ads for Borden Milk. At the 1939 New York World's Fair, when people began asking where Elsie was, Borden's picked a cow originally named 'You'll do Lobelia' from their herd to be Elsie. Elsie stared in commercials, made personal appearances, and even starred in an RKO movie, 'Little Men.' Elsie was injured in a truck accident in 1941 and had to be put to sleep. She is buried in Plainsboro, New Jersey.
1941 Robert Allen Zimmerman was born.
1941 Musician 'Jelly Roll' Morton died.
1941 Martha Stewart was born. Entertaining advisor, cookbook author, etc.
1941 Paul Sabatier died. Organic chemist who researched catalytic organic synthesis. The margarine, oil hydrogenation and methanol industries grew out of his research.
1941 Mama Cass Elliot (The Mamas and the Papas) was born. The rumor that she choked to death on a ham sandwich in 1974 is not true. She actually died of a heart attack.
1941 The first aerosol can was patented.
1941 Carmen Miranda recorded 'The Man with the Lollipop Song.'
1941 'King Biscuit Time' radio show was first broadcast from Helena, Arkansas. It is the longest running daily radio program in history, broadcasting live blues music, interviews, etc. It is named for its sponsor, King Biscuit Flour. The King Biscuit Flour Hour rock and roll radio program took its name from 'King Biscuit Time.'
1941 First simple daily nutrition guide published.
1941 Maytag Dairy Farms began producing its world famous Maytag Blue Cheese after Fred Maytag II heard about the process for making Blue Cheese developed by Iowa State Univ.
1941 Garbage disposals introduced.
1941 Beltsville small white turkey developed ancestor of today's commercial turkeys.
1941 War time price controls go into effect on beef. A widespread black market emerges.
1941 General Mills introduced 'Cheerioats' breakfast cereal (renamed to 'Cherrios' in 1945). 'Cheerioats' sponsored the 'Lone Ranger' radio program beginning in 1941.
1941 Chubby Checker (Ernest Evans) was born.
1941 'Fry Me Cookie, with a Can of Lard' was recorded by the Will Bradley Orchestra.
1941 The Food and Nutrition Board of the National Academy of Sciences released the first Recommended Dietary Allowances (RDA), listing specific recommended intakes for calories and nine essential nutrients - protein, iron, calcium, vitamins A and D, thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, and ascorbic acid (vitamin C).
1941 'Moonlight Cocktail' was recorded by the Glenn Miller Orchestra.
1942 Bob Mosley of the music group 'Moby Grape' was born.
1942 To deal with the financial pressures of World War II, President Franklin D. Roosevelt's issued an Executive Order establishing the Office of Economic Stabilization, authorizing control of wages, salaries, profits, rents, and prices of agricultural commodities.
1942 Chemical structure of DDT discovered military began to use chemical to protect against typhus.
1942 Corn dogs are invented by Neil Fletcher for the Texas State Fair.
1942 Country Joe McDonald of 'Country Joe and the Fish' was born.
1942 Effective huller developed for harvesting castor beans.
1942 Clinton Hart Merriam died. A biologist, he studied the effects of using birds to control agricultural pests. He also helped found the National Geographic Society, and what is now known as the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
1942 Every-other-day milk delivery started (initially as a war conservation measure).
1942 War time food rationing began in the U.S.
1942 Leon Daudet died. French journalist and novelist, well known gastronome of his time.
1942 Oskar Bolza died. German mathematician noted for his work on the reduction of hyperelliptic to elliptic integrals. Huh?
1942 Casablanca , the movie, premiers in New York City on Thanksgiving Day
1942 Chris Hillman of the music group 'Flying Burrito Brothers' was born.
1942 Coffee rationing began in the U.S.
1942 The U.S. military began using K-Rations, developed by Ancel Keys of the University of Minnesota.
1942 'Moonlight Cocktail' by Glenn Miller and 'Tangerine' by Jimmy Dorsey were number one hits.
1943 Xavier Marcel Boulestin died (born 1878). French chef, restaurateur, cookbook author. He was also the first TV chef, appearing on the BBC in 1937-1939 in 'Cook's Night Out'.
1943 Henry Parsons Crowell died (born 1855). Founder of Quaker Oats Company in 1901.
1943 'Chef Tell' (Friedman Paul Erhardt) was born (died 2007). A European trained chef, one of the earliest celebrity TV chefs. He made appearances on Saturday Night Live, numerous talk shows, the PBS show 'In the Kitchen With Chef Tell' and was the inspiration for the Muppet's 'Swedish Chef.' He was also a restaurant owner, cookbook author and culinary educator.
1943 Irving Berlin won an Academy Award for Best Original Song for 'White Christmas' written for the film 'Holiday Inn'
1943 Meat and Cheese rationing began in the United States due to World War II shortages.
1943 Alan Wilson of the music group 'Canned Heat' was born.
1943 Jack Bruce of the music group 'Cream' was born.
1943 Honey Lantree of the music group 'Honeycombs' was born.
1943 Mick Abrahams of the music group 'Jethro Tull' was born.
1943 Jerry Martini of the music group 'Sly & The Family Stone' was born.
1943 Barbara Ann Hawkins of the vocal group 'The Dixie Cups' was born.
1943 George Washington Carver died. African American agricultural scientist and innovator. He developed hundreds of uses for peanuts, soybeans and sweet potatoes. He founded the George Washington Carver Research Foundation at Tuskegee, for agricultural research.
1943 Developed method for cleaning Navy airplane engines by blasting them with ground corn cobs.
1943 Pre-sliced bread was banned in the U.S. for the duration of World War II, to conserve metal from spare parts that might be needed.
1943 Palatable dehydrated eggs developed.
1943 Laslo Biro patented the ball point pen.
1943 General Eisenhower requested Coca-Cola provide 10 portable bottling plants for US troops overseas.
1943 Sgt. Edward Dzuba received the Legion of Merit award because of his talent to use food scraps in unusual and appetizing recipes.
1943 Research to create fruit essences began led to development of concentrated frozen apple and grape juices.
1943 John Harvey Kellogg died. Physician, vegetarian and health food pioneer. He was superintendent of the Battle Creek Sanitarium, where he developed the first breakfast cereals for his patients, Granose (granola) and toasted flakes. His brother, William K. Kellogg founded the Battle Creek Toasted Corn Flake Co. to produce cornflakes.
1943 Shoe rationing began in the U.S., limiting purchases to 3 pairs of leather shoes per year.
1943 Keith Floyd was born. British celebrity chef, restaurateur, cookbook author and cooking show host.
1943 Beatrix Potter died. English author of children's books, her first and most famous story is 'The Tale of Peter Rabbit,' originally written as an illustrated letter to a sick child.
1943 Dr. Alexander P. Anderson Died. He developed Puffed Rice in NYC in 1902, which was introduced to the world at the St. Louis World's Fair in 1904.
1943 ‘Edible Wild Plants of Eastern North America’ was published. Alfred Charles Kinsey is famous for the two books his Institute for Sex Research published, Sexual Behavior in the Human Male (1948) and Sexual Behavior of the Human Female (1953). He also wrote Edible Wild Plants of Eastern North America (1943).
1944 Gladys Knight was born. (Gladys Knight & the Pips) A 'Pip' is the small seed of a fruit, like those in an apple.
1944 Musician Eddie Rabbitt was born.
1944 Eric Bloom of the music group 'Blue Oyster Cult' was born.
1944 Henry Vestine of the music group 'Canned Heat' was born.
1944 Rosa Lee Hawkins of the vocal group 'Dixie Cups' was born.
1944 Michael Clark of the music group 'Flying Burrito Brothers' was born.
1944 Rob Grill of the music group 'Grassroots' was born.
1944 Jack Casady of the music group 'Hot Tuna' was born.
1944 John Sebastian of the music group 'Loving Spoonful' was born.
1944 Skip Spence and Don Stevenson of the music group 'Moby Grape' were born.
1944 Edgar Froese of the music group 'Tangerine Dream' was born.
1944 Tim Bogert of the music group 'Vanilla Fudge' was born.
1944 Author Frances Moore Lappe was born. She is the author of the best selling 'Diet for a Small Planet' (1971) which indirectly encouraged a vegetarian diet, by demonstrating that raising animals for food was an extremely wasteful use of resources. Also: 'World Hunger: 12 Myths' , 'Food First' , 'Taking Population Seriously' . etc.
1944 Leo Hendrik Baekeland was born. He was a chemist who invented Bakelite, the first plastic that did not soften when heated. Those black plastic knobs on stoves were made of bakelite.
1944 Synthetic quinine was made for the first time at Harvard University.
1944 Alice Waters was born. Executive Chef and Owner of Chez Panisse Restaurant, opened in 1971 in Berkeley, California.
1944 Most wartime meat rationing ended in the United States.
1944 Chiquita Banana, the song and the advertising jingle were both created for United Fruit Company.
'I'm Chiquita banana and I've come to say
Bananas have to ripen in a certain way
When they are fleck'd with brown and have a golden hue
Bananas taste the best and are best for you
You can put them in a salad
You can put them in a pie-aye
Any way you want to eat them
It's impossible to beat them
But, bananas like the climate of the very, very tropical equator
So you should never put bananas in the refrigerator.'
Music © 1945 Shawnee Press Inc.
1945 Don McLean was born. American singer/songwriter, best known for his 1971 'American Pie.'
1945 Eric 'Slowhand' Clapton, singer & songwriter was born. A member of the rock groups the Yardbirds and Cream.
1945 Bob Hite and of the music group 'Canned Heat' was born.
1945 Canned Heat guitarist Harvey Mandel was born.
1945 Stu Cook of the music group 'Creedence Clearwater Revival' was born.
1945 Joan Johnson of the vocal group the 'Dixie Cups' was born.
1945 Alan Ward of the music group 'The Honeycombs' was born.
1945 Peter Lewis of the music group 'Moby Grape' was born.
1945 Vincent Martell of the music group 'Vanilla Fudge' was born.
1945 Shoe rationing ended in the U.S.
1945 C.A.R.E. (Cooperative for American Relief Everywhere) was founded to send relieff packages to survivors of WWII in Europe.
1945 Grand Rapids, Michigan became the first U.S. city to fluridate its drinking water, to reduce tooth decay.
1945 Milton Snaveley Hershey of chocolate fame died.
1945 A malfunctioning toilet on German U-Boat U-1206 forces it to surface off the coast of Scotland. Promptly attacked by British aircraft, the Captain scuttles the boat.
1945 The Andrews Sisters recording of 'Rum and Coca Cola' hit #1 on the popular music charts.
1945 Fresh fruit maturity standards established for marketing oranges.
1945 The first Food-O-Mat was installed in a Grand Union Co. store in New Jersey.
1945 World Food Day. The founding day of the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization
1945 'Cheerioats' cereal was renamed 'Cheerios'
1945 Boordy Vineyards opened, the first bonded winery in Maryland.
1945 James T. Ehler, Chef and food writer, was born. That's me - creator, writer, editor, publisher & webmaster of the Food Reference Website.
1945 Wartime rationing ended in the U.S.
1945 P. L. Spencer applied for a patent for a microwave oven. (issued January 24, 1950)
1945 Japan organized school children to gather more than 1 million tons of acorns to make into flour due to dwindling stocks of rice and wheat.
1945 The first U.S. commercially made ballpoint pens are sold for $12.50 each at Gimbel's Department store in New York City.
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Fittingly, a dish often consumed to alleviate a hangover may have been inspired by that very condition. According to legend, one morning in 1894, Lemuel Benedict, a fashionable Wall Street stock broker, stumbled upon the Waldorf Hotel for breakfast. Complaining of a hangover, he ordered a la carte items from the menu, believing his concoction would help ease the aftermath of his drinking. His order consisted of poached eggs, buttered toast, and bacon, with a side of hollandaise sauce.
The maître d’ tasted the creation and was quite impressed with the dish. As a result, he added it to the permanent menu, substituting English muffins for toast and ham for bacon. The new entrée, named in honor of Benedict, quickly became a signature meal and remains one to this day.
Fun Fact: A restaurant at the Waldorf Astoria New York, Oscar’s Brasserie, was named after that maître d’, Oscar Tschirky.
19 Most Famous Food Quotes of All Time
Eat healthy, live healthy.
Herbs are the way forward.13. "At home I serve the kind of food I know the story behind” - Michael Pollan.Apart from being a famous American Writer, Michael Pollan also happens to teach at the UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism.14. "The secret of being a good actor is the love for food” - Yash Chopra. The right ingredients make life worth living.