Eat A Pretzel Day
As related by the website Just Fun Facts, a common origin story of pretzels is that they were created by a monk around 610 in Italy. According to the History of Science and Technology, the monk baked strips of dough that he folded into a shape resembling a child crossing its arms in prayer. He would give these treats, to children who had memorized their prayers. The first pretzels were baked as a soft, squishy bread, like the soft pretzels of today. Some say they were originally called “bracellae,” the Latin term for “little arms,” from which Germans later derived the word “bezel.” Pretzel legend has it that in 1614 in Switzerland, royal couples used a pretzel in their wedding ceremonies (similar to how a wishbone might be used today) to seal the bond of matrimony, and that this custom may have been the origin of the phrase “tying the knot.” Pretzels made their way across the Atlantic with German immigrants who were later to be known as the Pennsylvania Dutch in the 1700s.
National Nut Day
Walnuts are the oldest known tree food — they date all the way back to 10,000 BC. Almonds can’t grow on their own. They need bees to help them pollinate. The shell of the cashew is toxic and can’t be eaten. Cashews are in the same plant family as poison ivy and poison sumac and their itchy oil is primarily contained in their shell. Macadamia nuts are never picked. They are harvested from the ground after they fall off the tree. They also have the hardest shell of any nut, taking 300 PSI of pressure to crack it open. Brazil nuts are a truly special nut. They require a specific bee to be pollinated and take as long as 10 to 30 years to mature. Americans spend almost $800 million a year on peanut butter…the only thing is, peanuts aren’t actually nuts – they’re legumes. Texas adopted the pecan tree as its state tree in 1919. In fact, Texas Governor James Hogg asked that a pecan tree be planted at his gravesite.
Today’s Birthdays of Note….
Curly Howard – Actor on 3 Stooges – born in Brooklyn, New York
Annette Funicello – Singer & Actress starring on Mickey Mouse Club – born in Utica, New York