Thursday, July 3, 2014

Today in History: Food

Have you ever considered which fruit is your favorite? Are there any that you just don’t care for? I can honestly say I have enjoyed every fruit I’ve ever tried, but the blueberry is still my favorite. Of course, this post really has nothing to do with blueberries, except that they’re food.

On this day in history, the year 1806 to be exact, Mr. Michael Keens exhibited the first cultivated strawberry. In an attempt to verify this fact and gather some interesting background information, I actually learned quite a bit about the breeding process of the strawberry. For instance, although we commonly think of it as a berry, it is in fact an accessory fruit. At first I thought, “Perhaps we will start seeing a cross-over into the world of fashion accessories?” Until I learned that this means the fleshy part is derived not from the plant’s ovaries, but from the receptacle that holds the ovaries. I don’t envision ovaries being a trend-setter anytime soon.

Also, as you may well know, it can be eaten fresh or in a variety of “prepared foods” such as jams, jellies, preserves, pies, and so on. I find fresh to be a delightful summer treat, as well as in a milkshake or smoothie. Its aroma is also widely used for various purposes (a very versatile accessory).

Another food event on this day, 60 years ago in fact, food rationing was ended in Great Britain. That would definitely be a cause for celebration! I say we all take a few hours to craft our own “phone booths” in the English style, jump in, and make a toast to the United Kingdom with fresh, cold, smooth strawberry shakes!

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