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I learnt baking the hard way after producing innumerable cupcakes tasting either of raw dough, toothpaste, or absolutely nothing. Those for sure were accidents. But there were some fortunate people from the past who never cursed the food that went wrong—because it yielded some of the foods that I am now thankful for.
They had no idea that they had unintentionally created some delectable palates. Yes! Believe it or not, I’m going to be feeding you with some exciting gossip about the foods that are so common, we could never have thought that nobody meant for them to exist. With luck, these culinary errors turned out to be delicacies that we have cherished since times immemorial.
Okay, okay, not making you wait any longer! Here you go:
Chocolate chip cookies
One day in 1930, Ruth Wakefield (owner of the Toll House Inn- famous for the birth of chocolate chip cookies), was out of baking chocolate for her chocolate cookies, and threw in a broken-up bar of Nestle’s semi-sweet chocolate thinking it would melt and create a chocolate cookie. There—the invention happened.
It all started with a nomad and a bag of milk. The bag was made from an animal’s stomach, which contains rennin—an enzyme that condenses milk. He was galloping with his horse along the desert, and opened his bag to surprisingly find the whey and curds separated from the churning motion and the heat. He tasted it—and bang! The miracle happened just under the right conditions.
On a chilly San Francisco night in 1905, an absent-minded 11-year old stirred his soft drink with a mixing stick, forgot it out on his porch, and returned the morning after to find the drink obviously frozen on the stick. Frank Epperson grew up to patent the result of his delish carelessness in 1920s.
Two brothers, Will and John, worked at a sanatorium. In 1893, Will left a pot of cooked wheat and it evidently went stale. The brothers tried to make dough out of it, but the rollers they pushed it through only broke it down into smaller wheat shavings. Non-quitters, they toasted the pieces and served them to their patients—who loved them. They carried on to perfect this product and called it “Granose”. Now that the suspense is built—their full names were Will and John Kellogg!
Chef George Crum created the potato chips in 1853 at Moon’s Lake House in New York. A customer continuously sent his fried potatoes back, complaining that they were soggy and not crunchy enough. Crum sliced the potatoes as thin as possible, fried them in hot grease, then doused them with salt. And we can’t eat just one of these potato chips.
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