I see you eating every day, there, without asking yourself any questions, but you don’t want to know where what you have on your plate and your glass comes from? No, not where it came from like “my tomatoes come from Spain, it’s marked on the label”, but where does it come from in history. So you want to know? No matter your answer, I’m telling you anyway.
1. The domestication of chicken would have started in Thailand
Many studies give different origins to the first traces of chicken farms, sometimes in China, sometimes in Southeast Asia, sometimes in Egypt, sometimes on the Moon (beware there is a trap). But the most solid study to date has decided: it would be in the zone which corresponds to the center of Thailand that the first poultry farms would have taken place, around 3500 years BC. JC. The practice would then have spread to China and Central Asia before arriving in Europe around 2800 BC. JC. Anyway, we’ve been eating chicken for a long time.
2. Our ancestors stole eggs
Far be it from me to revive you on the debate of which of the egg or the hen appeared first (in addition we know that it is the egg, the dinos were already laying), on the other hand we can talk of the origin of the egg as food. And there it is even simpler: our hunter-gatherer ancestors occasionally stole eggs from the nests of birds to feed themselves. It was only much later, with the poultry farms just mentioned above, that we began to consume eggs on a slightly more regular basis. And for the record, know that the Romans ate peacock eggs, and the Chinese pigeon eggs. Not at every meal, huh, but it happened.
3. The legendary history of coffee
There is a legend about an Ethiopian shepherd whose goats ate coffee tree seeds. The shepherd would have one day imitated his goats and would have eaten the seeds and then discovered the effects of caffeine. The guy would have presented his discovery to the local monks, but the guys, not at all receptive, would have burned the seeds, claiming that it was the work of the devil. Except that the devil’s work, while burning, started giving off a good smell, so the guys changed their minds and added water to their discovery to make… coffee. But here you are going to tell me that you did not come here to be told legends, so here is the truth which is a little bland: we do not know exactly who invented coffee, but the first cultures would be born in Yemen in the 15th century, which is quite late after all. And you have to know that we also took a long time to drink the coffee; in the beginning, a paste was made by mixing the coffee berries with animal fats. A little less enticing than a good cup of kawa.
4. We always drank alcohol
Know that man was already making your favorite food 13,000 years ago. Traces of a drink close to beer have been found in the cave of Raqefet, in the north of Israel, and it is to date the oldest known trace, which does not exclude the manufacture of alcohol even earlier. But what is certain is that we consumed alcohol much earlier, since scientists have discovered that 10 million years ago, hominids began to have an enzyme capable of metabolizing ethanol and that this enzyme was transmitted to their descendants. It is believed that our ancestors consumed fruit that had fallen to the ground and fermented, making it alcoholic. Basically, we’ve been enjoying being tipsy for millions of years.
5. The avocado is here thanks to the mammoths
Have you ever wondered why the avocado has such a big pit compared to other fruits? If yes, be happy because you are going to have the answer now. If most fruits have seeds, it’s because they depend on animals to reproduce (well now man also grows fruits but let’s put that aside). Animals digest the fruit, but not the seeds, which are scattered elsewhere with their droppings. Super smart. So you are probably wondering about the interest for the avocado to have such a large pit since the animals are too small to eat it. Well, you have to remember that before there were giant animals (such as mammoths or giant sloths) which could eat avocados whole and spread their seeds further. Afterwards, man also started eating avocado thousands of years ago in Mexico, and if he obviously didn’t eat its pit, he planted it to grow new ones. That’s why the thing never changed size again.
6. Sparkling water made a guy whose name is very famous rich
If there are some sources of naturally sparkling water, they are still quite rare, and it was not until 1766 that a Swedish chemist by the name of Torbern Olof Bergman (stylish) succeeded in producing sparkling water from unnatural way. Almost at the same time, in 1767, an Englishman, Joseph Priestley, also discovered on his side a process for making sparkling water, and it was his own process which would be marketed a few years later by a certain Johann Jacob. Schweppe. Yes yes, the guy who invented the Schweppes brand. Isn’t that completely crazy?
7. Tomato has long been considered poisonous
The tomato is one of those things that was stolen from South America and Central America shortly after Christopher Columbus crashed with his ships. But the most interesting thing is to know that when it arrived in Europe, the tomato was rather a dish for the poor. In fact, it is above all because, for two centuries, the rich believed it was poisoned, and it is true that many found themselves poisoned when they ate tomatoes. Except the fruit wasn’t really the issue. The problem was the pewter plates the rich ate from. These plates contained lead, and the tomato, acid, absorbed this lead which was then ingested by the eater. Gold (not the metal, but the coordinating conjunction), lead is very toxic. On the other hand, the poor, who didn’t have nice pewter plates, could eat tomatoes without any problem. Afterwards, we finally understood where it was screwing up, and everyone was able to eat tomatoes in peace. A beautiful story, isn’t it?