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History of Cooking

The origins of cooking are obscure. Primitive humans may first have savoured roast meat by chance, when the flesh of a beast killed in a forest fire was found to be more palatable and easier to chew and digest than the customary raw meat. They probably did not deliberately cook food, though, until long after they had learned to use fire for light and warmth.

9000 B.C. Plant cultivation begins in the Fertile Crescent region of the Middle East. Sheep are domesticated in the Middle East. Mesoamerican (what is now Mexico and Central America) peoples begin domesticating plants --gourds, peppers, avocados, and a grain, amaranth
4,000 BC Egyptians used yeast as a leavening agent.
Onions, radishes and garlic were the mainstay of the diet of Egyptians who built the Great Pyramid at Gaze. This low-fat, pungent and highly aromatic diet obviously served as fuel for that mammoth project.
3,000 BC Farmers of Mesapotomia were growing crops of turnips, onions, broad beans, peas, lentils, leeks, radishes and maybe garlic. Probably breeding ducks at this time
The Chinese Emperor; Sung Loong Sze 'discovers' the medicinal properties of herbs Turkey from this era have been found in American Indian refuse sights
3,000 BC
1,000 AD
This was an active period for food development in the Roman Empire. The agricultural revolution during this period brought the shift to a largely grain diet. People became loyal to their land -- the first step toward nationalism.
2,000 BC Pomegranates are believed to have originated in Persia. Their skins were used to dye wool. The pomegranate was a fertility symbol in many ancient cultures, undoubtedly because it has so many seeds.
500 BC Sugar cane and bananas cultivated in India. Avocados were recorded in hieroglyphics by the Mayan Indians in southeastern Mexico and Central America. This highly developed civilization appreciated the many virtues of this tropical fruit, and they seemed to enjoy it in its natural state. cooking and recipes history
50 BC Apricot trees were first cultivated in China. From there, they made their way west to India, Armenia and Persia. Before the 13th century, they'd made their way to England, via Italy. Shakespeare probably enjoyed the fruit.
400 AD Pasta, the Italian word for dough, was probably introduced to Italy by Germanic tribes, who invaded throughout the 5th century. The German word for pasta -- nudel -- gave us the English word noodle.  
1493 Columbus "discovered" pineapple on the West Indies island of Guadeloupe. The people there called pineapple nana, meaning fragrance. This lovely fruit wasn't introduced to Hawaii until centuries later.  
1621 The first Thanksgiving Day was a harvest festival celebrated by the Pilgrims of Plymouth colony in 1621. After a devastating winter in 1620, they celebrated a successful harvest in 1621. The Pilgrims had 20 acres of corn, grown from seeds furnished by Indians.  
1742 The first American cookbook was published -- "The Complete Housewife" or "Accomplish't Gentlewoman's Companion" by Eliza Smith. Its success led to a reprint in 1764.  
1789 George Washington falls in love with ice cream at a dinner party hosted by Mrs. Alexander Hamilton, who served the creamy frozen dessert. Did she serve cherry flavor?  
Sept. 26, 1830 Col. Robert Gibbon Johnson dispels the common misconception that tomatoes are poisonous. He ate tomatoes publicly on the courthouse steps in Salem, New Jersey, on this date. Tomatoes were believed to be poisonous because they are in the nightshade family, some members of which are deadly.  
March, 1850 Agoston Haraszthy, a legendary Hungarian also known as the "Father of California Viticulture," began to plant the first of his California vineyards. He had planted grapes in Wisconsin before that.  
April, 1933 Repeal of The Volstead Act. The end of Prohibition launched the New Beer's Eve celebration. After 14 dry years, the US government was encouraging the drinking of a low-alcohol (3.2 percent) beer, and breweries had geared up for the occasion.  
1945 -- 1965 Nouvelle cuisine was born in France, thanks to the Young Turk chefs. Expert chefs got together and agreed it was necessary to simplify French cooking to streamline the kitchen and appeal to modern tastes and health concerns.  
1963 Julia Child's "The French Chef" series aired on WGBH-TV, the public television station in Boston. After that debut, her cooking shows were so successful, they were aired nationally.  
October 28, 1996

The world celebrated the 150th anniversary of French Chef Auguste Escoffier's birth. He was called the King of Chefs and Chef of Kings.


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