Showing posts with label Marshmallows. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Marshmallows. Show all posts

Aug 28, 2015

Nine Old Snack Foods

Marshmallows have been around since ancient Egypt, and were often used to soothe sore throats By the 19th century, French confectioners began whipping the marshmallow to the shape we know.

Pretzels are widely considered to be the world’s oldest snack food It is believed the modern pretzel’s predecessor was first made in the 6th century by an Italian monk, who used it as a treat to reward his youngest church attendees. The word “pretzel” is from the Latin word “pretzola,” which loosely translates to “little reward.”

Archeologists reporting finding popcorn ears that they can date all the way back to being snacked on some 5,600 years ago. Native Americans would throw popcorn ears right on a fire, in order to pop out kernels. ( I bought popping corn ears at Bass Pro and popped in microwave. Fun to watch the thing fill up with popcorn and spill out when the door was opened.)

Necco Wafers were first manufactured in 1847 and Oliver Chase invented a cutting machine that allowed the slices to be made so thin.

Cracker Jack most likely began in 1871 Chicago, IL when German immigrant Frederick William Rueckheim started cooking up and selling his own type of popcorn. By 1896, Cracker Jack was being produced for commercial sales.

In 1897, Pearle Bixby Wait trademarked the powdered gelatin dessert, called Jell-O.

Triscuits were first invented in 1903 in Niagara Falls, NY. Triscuits were originally larger, but shrunk down to their current size in1924.

The first Sunshine Hydrox cookie was made in 1908 and was followed by its Oreo competitor in 1912. The difference between Hydrox and Oreo is that Hydrox is a bit more crispy and less sugary, and the original Hydrox was Kosher.  Hydrox are supposed to become available again this year, but have yet to find them for sale.

Apr 13, 2013

Origin of Marshmallows

 I would be remiss if I mentioned Graham crackers and did not speak about marshmallows at the same time. Marshmallows date back to as early as 2000 BC and Egyptians made individual marshmallows by hand by extracting sap from a mallow plant and mixing it with nuts and honey.

The official name of the mallow plant is Althea officials and it is a pink-flowered plant. Marshes are the native growing ground for the mallow plant; hence the name marshmallow. Mallow plants are native in Asia and Europe and are also grown in eastern United States.

During the 1800s, candy makers in France took the sap from marshmallow plants and combined it with egg whites and sugar. The mixture was whipped by hand and took the form of the marshmallow we know today.

Candy makers replaced the sap taken from the marshmallow plant with gelatin, which enabled the marshmallow mixture to maintain its form and reduced the labor intensive process of extracting sap from the mallow plant. The gelatin was combined with corn syrup, starch, sugar, and water to create the fluffy texture of the marshmallow. The gelatin ingredient is essential for extending the shelf life of marshmallows because of the moisture it infuses into the candy. Thus, by replacing the previous egg whites with gelatin, marshmallows maintain their elastic and spongy qualities much longer than they had previously.

The marshmallow made its way to the United States in the 1900s and grew in popularity in the 1950s when it was used in a variety of recipes. Even though Americans were a little behind when it came to the marshmallow, they are now the number one consumers of the fluffy candy, buying more than 90 million pounds per year.
In 1948, Alex Doumak created an extrusion process to make marshmallows. Through this process, the marshmallow substance was pressed through tubes, cut into equal pieces, cooled, and then packaged - just the perfect size for s'mores.