December 19, 2019
Top 15 Food Histories of 2019
Article-Fu-Pei-Mei-Taiwanese-Chef-Chinese-Cookbook

The close of this decade has us looking back on more than just the last ten years. We dug up the nostalgia of the ’90s (remember the days of high-end Chilean sea bass?) and beyond, chronicling centuries of Pennsylvanian scrapple. We’ve put together our favorite food histories, from the life of Fu Pei-mei, who influenced a lineage of Taiwanese home cooks, to tracing the roots of how olive oil started to become a fixture in every American kitchen 30 years ago.

We asked a lot of questions—and unearthed the answers. Ever wonder why the mid-aughts were filled with $27 restaurant hamburgers? Or who invented the everything bagel? Or how raspberry vinaigrette became an icon of the ’80s? Here’s a roundup of 15 food-centric histories that got us thinking. —Tatiana Bautista, Assistant Editor

When Jacques Pépin Made All the World an Omelet

Top 15 Food Histories of 2019

When Jacques Pépin Made All the World an Omelet

In April of 1995, Jacques Pépin taped a cooking demonstration that detailed how to make an omelet. And while it was merely one of 105 segments the chef recorded over a frantic two-day period in a studio in Northern California, the clip has become one of the most beloved food videos of all time. This is its story.

The Legend of Lebanon Bologna

Top 15 Food Histories of 2019

The Legend of Lebanon Bologna

This Pennsylvania Dutch specialty lunch meat is far from the bland bologna of your middle-school lunch table. The sweet and tangy cult favorite is beloved by locals and Pennsylvania expats across the United States. Bless mail order.

The Rise and Fall of the Fancy Chef Burger

Top 15 Food Histories of 2019

The Rise and Fall of the Fancy Chef Burger

Hamburgers, with secretive beef blends, over-the-top toppings, and outrageous prices, used to be the celebrated calling card for any respectable chef. Then the histrionics of the patty became a punch line.

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