May 23, 2014

Chopsticks Facts

Chopsticks were created about 5,000 years ago in China. The earliest versions were used for cooking and were most likely made from twigs. They began being used as table implements about 500 AD.



The table knife’s decline in popularity in these regions at this time can also be attributed to the teachings of Confucius, who was a vegetarian. He believed that knives were not appropriate to eat with. Confucius supposedly said, "The honorable and upright man keeps well away from both the slaughterhouse and the kitchen and he allows no knives on his table."


Chopsticks later migrated to Japan and Korea. One distinct difference between Japanese and Chinese chopsticks was that the former were made from a single piece of bamboo that were joined at the base.



While the early chopsticks were more often than not made of some cheap material, such as bamboo, later silver chopsticks were sometimes used during Chinese dynastic times in order to prevent food poisoning. It changes color if touched by garlic, onion, or rotten eggs, which release hydrogen sulfide that reacts with the silver causing it to change color.