The Real Story About Irish Coffee And How It Was Invented

Before lattes and cappuccinos, before frappuccinos and espressos there was flavored coffee, ie Irish coffee, still one of the world’s most popular drinks. Yet not that much is known about why and how it became so popular.

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Margaret O’Shaughnessy, the Founding Director at Foynes Flying Boat museum in County Limerick, has written to IrishCentral to say the flying boat terminal at Foynes, 35 miles from Shannon, and not Shannon Airport was the location for the first Irish Coffee after we mistakenly said Shannon was where it was invented in a recent article.

The inventor, bartender Joe Sheridan, later moved to San Francisco and worked at the Buena Vista Cafe irish coffee_04where journalist Stanton Delaplane of the San Francisco Chronicle had brought back the secret formula from Ireland and started one of the world’s most famous drinks.

Despite it being an incredible success, Delaplane later admitted he couldn’t stand the stuff yet found his name forever linked to it.

Sheridan was a top class chef and bartender whose family had moved from the North to Dublin. When he applied for the chef’s job at Rineanna, the townland in Limerick where the Flying Boat terminal was based, his application came in to CEO Brendan O’Regan for the position of chef and it simply stated, “Dear Sir. I’m the man for the job. Yours sincerely, Joe Sheridan.

It turned out he wasn’t lying. Foynes was the first Irish transatlantic Airport when Pan Am did their first passenger commercial flights from New York to Foynes in 1939 and Joe Sheridan soon became famous.

irish coffee_03The Pan Am flying boats were based at Foynes while Shannon Airport was actually 35 miles away. Charles Lindbergh helped choose the two airports for Pan Am but no direct flights from Shannon to the US occurred until 1945, long after Irish coffee was invented

Until then passengers to the US from Europe flew into Shannon and were bussed to Foynes.

In 1943 a flying boat flight to New York turned back due to bad weather and Joe Sheridan, originally from Castlederg in Co. Tyrone – a chef and highly skilled bartender – was asked to come back to Foynes to prepare hot food and drinks for the freezing passengers.

He put some good Irish whiskey into their coffees and was asked by the passengers if he had used Brazilian coffee to which he replied ”No it was Irish coffee.” He then continued to put the coffee in a glass and topped it with pouring cream – thus the Irish coffee we know today was invented in Foynes, not Shannon Airport that night.

Furthermore, in 1952 Joe Sheridan was offered a job in san Francisco at the Buena Vista and he met Stanton Delaplane the journalist who had made his drink world famous.

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The San Francisco Chronicle reported that after sampling Irish Coffee at Foynes in 1951 Delaplane flew home and he spent a long evening at the Buena Vista Cafe near the foot of Hyde Street working out the proper balance of ingredients. Overnight Jack Koeppler, the late owner of what had been a quiet neighborhood bar, found himself the proprietor of the most prosperous saloon in the city.

irish coffee_06Five years later, Delaplane was quoted in Time magazine as saying; “I can’t stand the stuff anymore.”

Joe Sheridan was even enticed over to the Buena Vista in 1952 and worked there for ten years. He is buried in Oakland, CA. Delaplane, who was the winner of a Pulitzer Prize, died in 1988.

Today the Buena Vista serves up to 2,000 Irish coffees a day. The busiest day they’ve ever had was the Super Bowl in 1982, 49ers vs. Miami. Three bartenders served 109 bottles of whiskey between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. The night crew served another 104. There are 29 drinks per bottle. So that means the pub served well over 6,000 drinks that day [6,177 specifically].

All because of a cold night and bad weather, all because of a storm in 1943 that forced a flight to America back to its origin at Foynes Irish coffee became the first flavored coffee drink. One wonders what Joe and Stan would make of all the flavored beans in Starbuck’s these days!

traditional strong irish coffee on wooden bar with coffee beans

Article by James O’Shea found at irishcentral.com

The Story of Typhoo Tea

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Typhoo’s Beginings

Typhoo’s origins are located in Birmingham . By the turn of the 20th century, Birmingham had over sixty tea merchants selling mostly large leaf tea.

typhootea_08The founder of Typhoo, John Sumner, was born 26 February 1856 in Birmingham. His grandfather (William) and father (John) had established a grocery business in the Bull Ring in Birmingham.

In the early 1900s John Sumner senior, now in his seventies, left the running of the shop to his son. John junior was happy with the successful business but had long sought a speciality product to develop. The answer came from his sister Mary Augusta. She suffered from indigestion and had tried a special tea made from tiny particles, not the large leaf variety that was common. The tea brought her great relief from her indigestion and she approached John to suggest he sold the tea in his shop.

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John decided to go ahead. He bought 30 chests of tea and spent £200 on advertising, even though his friends suggested he might be wasting his money. John decided that, instead of selling the tea loose over the counter, he would packet the tea under a brand name. The criteria he placed on choosing a name for his tea were:

The name must be distinctive and unlike others
It must be one which would trip off the tongue
It must be one which could be protected by registration

typhootea_17He finally settled on Typhoo Tipps. Typhoo meaning, in part, the Chinese word for doctor. The double p in Tipps was originally a printing error but remained misspelt on the packets of tea for many years.

Typhoo was the first brand of tea to be sold pre-packaged rather than loose over the counter. In order to encourage his customers to purchase the tea John gave away a jar of cream to each person that bought a pound packet. The tea quickly became popular and John’s customers were becoming loyal to the brand that. Word of mouth recommendation from John’s customers led beyond his regular clientele and soon other grocers were asking to purchase the Typhoo tea, inspiring John to set up his wholesale agency trade.

Sumner’s Typhoo Tea Ltd

1905 saw John close his grocery business in order to pay off debts to the bank. However, he took the opportunity to invest in Typhoo and create a private company. On 29 July 1905, and financed by John’s friends, Typhoo Tea Ltd was incorporated.

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In the first year, Typhoo managed to show a small profit and silence the critics that said John would never make a business from small-leafed tea. John had, however, drawn attention to tea made from the edge of the leaf. This pure-edge leaf tea produced 80 more cups to the pound than ordinary tea and also cut out the stalk that contained tannin and caused indigestion. John even managed to get his tea recommended by doctors and was able to sell it through chemists’ shops.

As early as 1906 John Sumner was having special Typhoo branded teapots made to sell to his customers. He also inserted typhootea_07circulars into the tea packets to highlight its benefits, and included picture cards on a range of subjects, which became very collectable.

Typhoo Tea Ltd made steady progress. In 1909 John had managed to pay off all his debts. He celebrated by travelling to Ceylon to appoint a buying/blending agency to buy the tea directly from the tea auctions, therefore reducing costs. John also moved all his blending requirements to Ceylon, again reducing costs and resulting in a reduction of the cost of Typhoo to the public. The company continued to grow in both size and in the loyalty of its customers.

First World War

In March 1917 Typhoo faced a tough challenge from the British government. The start of the First World War had caused the government to announce it was going to ration tea by buying up all the available tea and then distributing limited amounts to retailers at a uniform price.

typhootea_16Because Typhoo was trading in leaf-edge rather than ordinary tea, they could not make their product from the tea the government intended to supply. Requests for the supply of leaf-edge tea were turned down, and even an appeal signed by 4000 men in the medical profession could not change the government’s mind.

John decided to go to the public, inserting a circular into the Typhoo packets that asked every customer to write to the Tea Controller stating the medical reason why they required Typhoo’s product. The Tea Controller, deluged with letters, eventually gave in and granted Typhoo a permit to trade in leaf-edge tea.

Between the Wars

After the war Typhoo continued to expand, moving its packaging business into larger premises with the latest packaging machinery. Blending was still carried out by the Ceylon agents in Colombo.

typhootea_09In 1932 John Sumner was knighted in recognition of his charitable services that included the founding of the John Sumner Trust, devoted to work with education, literature, art and research. The award also recognised John’s setting up of the Colehaven Endowed Homes for Gentlewomen and his work with hospitals. John celebrated his knighthood with a staff party and a bonus for all his employees.

In the early 1930s problems arose with the quality of the tea being supplied from Ceylon. It was discovered that the agents in Ceylon were not adhering to the quality control requirements put in place by Typhoo. They were, in fact, purchasing inferior teas at low prices and then overcharging for the blend in order to make a profit.

typhootea_18The matter was followed up by John Sumner’s son, J R Hugh Sumner, and the situation was finally resolved in January 1933 when the contract with the Ceylon agency was terminated. The newly appointed agents, Carson & Co. Ltd took over the responsibility for buying and blending and continued for many years until market trends led to less Ceylon tea being required for the blends. Around this time Typhoo was increasing in capacity and was able to house blending equipment in its works in the Birmingham Canal Basin. After the blending machinery had been completely installed in 1934, Typhoo began to employ its own tea taster/blenders.

Now in advancing years, John Sumner senior visited the works less and less and died on 11 May 1934. After the death of his father, J R Hugh Sumner was elected chairman of Typhoo.

Second World War

With the onset of the Second World War, once again a government Tea Controller took ownership of all the stocks of tea. Rationing of tea began in 1940 and continued for a further 12 years.

typhootea_15Wartime bombing devastated the Typhoo factories. Unable to pack their own tea, Typhoo made arrangements to have an emergency blend packed at the factories of Messrs Brooke Bond Ltd and Lyons Ltd. The employees at Typhoo made great efforts to make enough repairs to the factory to allow the Typhoo brand to continue and, by June 1941, a limited amount of genuine Typhoo tea was available. A steady turnover of stock was maintained until the end of the war when the damage to the works could be fully repaired. Wartime also saw a change to the name of the company. ‘Sumners’ was dropped from the front of the name, leaving Typhoo Tea Ltd.

Moving On

After tea rationing had finished, Typhoo once again concentrated on promoting their brand. Throughout the 1950s they used various promotional campaigns, including the reintroduction of the picture cards that had been popular before the war.

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The tea buyers started to buy more tea from India and introduced a shipping department to deal with the administration. New packing machines were installed at the factory to cope with the increased output and by 1960 Typhoo had become the brand leader.

By the mid 1960s, Typhoo was annually packing more than 80 million pounds of tea and exporting to 40 countries worldwide. J R Hugh Sumner, aged 80, finally retired and handed over the chairmanship to managing director H C Kelley.

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Typhoo’s success had, over the years, attracted attention from potential investors. However, it wasn’t until the late 1960s that the management was tempted into a merger. They entered into talks with Schweppes, the famous soft drinks firm, and on 24 January 1968 it was announced that Typhoo was to join Schweppes’ old Food Division to form a new company called Typhoo Schweppes. A year later, Cadbury’s also joined the conglomeration, creating Cadbury Schweppes Typhoo.

In 1986 Typhoo was sold in a management buyout and the new company was called Premier Brands. The company immediately set about increasing its tea typhootea_11business with the purchase of the famous Scottish tea company, Melrose’s, in November 1986. This was the first of four acquisitions made by Premier in 1986-7. The second purchase was the Glengettie Tea Company followed by Ridgways and Jersey Trading Corporation SrL.

Significant profit improvement was a key feature of the following years. Premier continued to expand its tea operation by acquiring the herbal tea market leader, London Herb & Spice. Internal growth also saw the development of products, including Typhoo One Cup and Typhoo Q Tea instant.

In 1989 Premier Brands was bought by Hillsdown Holdings and then in 1999 by American venture capitalists Hicks Muse Tate and Furst. Further product developments were seen in 1999 when Typhoo became the first tea brand to introduce a green tea blend to the UK market and, in 2004, with the launch of Typhoo Fruit and Herb.

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On 31 October 2005 Apeejay Surrendra Group, one of India’s largest tea producers, acquired Typhoo and its associated brands.

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Text from typhootea.com

Everything You’ve Ever Wanted to Know About Glögg

With background info, recipes, and where to find Scandinavia’s beloved holiday drink in the Bay Area.

Article by By Luke Tsai posted in East Bay Express, November 26 2014

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Many Christmases ago, a coworker with a vague Norwegian affiliation first poured me a steaming hot, boozy, sweet, crimson-red concoction so loaded with the fragrance of cloves, cinnamon, and cardamom, it was as though he’d emptied the contents of his winter spice cabinet into the mug.

Glögg_02It was glögg, the traditional mulled wine beverage that’s wildly popular throughout Scandinavia. But here in the Bay Area, glögg — pronounced, roughly, like “glug” — is still largely unknown.

Slowly, though, that’s starting to change, thanks in part to the efforts of a homesick Swede, a beloved Scandinavian specialty shop, and a restaurant looking to expand beyond its typically all-American cocktail selection.

Martin Geijer started his San Francisco-based company, Geijer Glögg, which produces a glögg liqueur, in large part because he was homesick for the stuff. Geijer explained that in his native Sweden, the drink is rooted in the winter season, when everyone is chilled to the bone. “It really is bloody cold,” he said. Alcohol makes you feel warmer — and all the better if it’s served hot and infused with comforting winter spices.

Glögg_05Here in the East Bay, throwing a glögg party can be as simple as picking up a bottle of pre-mixed glögg concentrate, and it should come as no surprise that Berkeley’s Nordic House (2709 San Pablo Ave.) — the Bay Area’s repository for all things Scandinavian — is the place to go. For $7.95, you can snag a bottle of Saturnus, a popular Swedish brand. To make a batch of glögg, pour the concentrate into a pot along with the cheapest bottle of dry red wine you have on hand. (Nordic House owner Pia Klausen favors a Gallo burgundy.) While this heats up, add raisins, almond slivers, and fresh orange peel. Serve the glögg hot, providing spoons for your guests so they can scoop up the raisins, which will plump as they cook, absorbing all of the sweet, boozy goodness.

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As an alternative to the bottled concentrate, Nordic House also carries a house-made glögg spice mix ($3.95) that consists of cinnamon, cardamom, ginger, orange peel, and raisins. You add that to two bottles’ worth of wine and let the mixture sit overnight. When you’re ready to heat it up, add sugar and, if you like, some blanched almonds at the very end. This method takes a bit more advance planning, but according to Klausen, it’s worth it — the spices won’t be as intense with the pre-bottled version.

Glögg_07If you’ve had glögg before, it was probably very similar to the kind that Klausen describes. But Martin Geijer’s family recipe, passed down to him by his father, involved infusing the traditional spices into a highly concentrated neutral spirit rather than the more typical red wine base. Starting last year, Geijer has enlisted Alameda’s St. George Spirits to distill a version of his family recipe. The result, Geiger Glögg, retails for $32 a bottle and is, according to Geijer, the world’s first glögg liqueur. (Apparently, in Sweden the tax code makes producing a non-wine-based product unfeasible from an economic standpoint.)

Glögg_06According to Geijer, the benefits of drinking glögg in this liqueur form are twofold: The spices are more prominent when there’s no wine flavor to cover them up, and, at 20 percent ABV, the liqueur packs a bigger punch than a traditional mulled wine.

You can heat it up in a pot or kettle, the same way you would a bottle of sake. But Geijer said the liqueur can be treated like any other spirit — served cold or at room temperature, either neat or mixed into a cocktail such as a Stockholm Sour: one part liqueur, one part bourbon, a half part fresh lemon juice, and a quarter part simple syrup, all mixed together in a cocktail shaker.

For more ambitious glögg-inspired cocktails, you might look to the handful of Bay Area restaurants that carry Geijer Glögg, including Hutch (2022 Telegraph Ave.), a Southern restaurant in Uptown Oakland whose bar program otherwise focuses almost exclusively on American whiskey. But owner David King explained that he was introduced to the pleasures of glögg when he was working as a chef in Copenhagen.

Glögg_08“Once it’s cold as it is in Denmark in December and January, it’s one of the best things you can put in your body,” King said.

King and his bar manager, Joshua Sexton, are hoping customers will warm up to a holiday cocktail that they recently added to the menu — a milk punch, served hot, that King said will be somewhat akin to a Brandy Alexander, which is traditionally made by mixing brandy, milk, crème de cacao, and spices such as cinnamon and nutmeg. In Hutch’s version, the glögg liqueur adds an extra boost of spice, resulting in something akin to a Christmas-y hot toddy — perfect for the holidays.

Glögg_03You probably want to know how the stuff tastes. I sampled a bottle of Geijer Glögg, and the first thing I noticed was the smell of cinnamon, which was potent enough that it wafted up through the unopened cap. The liqueur had a lovely golden-amber hue and, when I drank it, a honeyed sweetness followed by a spicy kick. The overall effect was not unlike a boozy distillation of Big Red chewing gum.

When you heat the glögg up — in the office microwave, in my case — the intensity doubles or triples. By the second sip, there was a pronounced warmth in my belly. On a frigid (by Bay Area standards) winter evening, I could see myself going back for a second cup, and then a third.

The Christmas Recipes – Part 30

The Christmas Recipes – Part 30

Peppermint Candies / Peppermyntekonfekt

Peppermint Candies / Peppermyntekonfekt

Quick Troll Cream / Rask Trollkrem

Quick Troll Cream / Rask Trollkrem

Hot Spicy Apple Drink / Varm Krydret Epledrikk

Hot Spicy Apple Drink / Varm Krydret Epledrikk

The Christmas Recipes – Part 16

The Christmas Recipes – Part 15

Café Brûlot – Burning Coffee / Brændende Kaffe

Café Brûlot – Burning Coffee / Brændende Kaffe

Coffee Punch / Kaffepunch

Coffee Punch / Kaffepunch

The Christmas Recipes – Part 7

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Danish Cardinal Punch / Dansk Kardinalpunch
Danish Cardinal Punch / Dansk Kardinalpunch

Grapefruit In Brandy / Grapefrukt I Konjakk
Grapefruit In Brandy / Grapefrukt I Konjakk

Cured Beef / Gravet Oksekjøtt
Cured Beef / Gravet Oksekjøtt

The Christmas Recipes – Part 1

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Angel Desert / Engledessert
Angel Desert / Engledessert

Hot Mulled Cider / Varm Kryddad Cider
Hot Mulled Cider / Varm Kryddad Cider

Jane Austen’s Negus / Jane Austens Negus

A classic hot beverage recipe found at historyextra.com
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In every issue of BBC History Magazine, picture editor Sam Nott brings you a recipe from the past. Here’s a recipe for the Negus served at the balls in Mansfield Park and The Watsons.

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Horrible News: Climate Change Weakens Flavor of Assam Tea

Are you a tea drinker? Are you a fan of burly, dark Irish Breakfast, English Breakfast, or any other blends made from Assam tea? Then we have bad news for you: Assam teas are becoming wimpier and it looks as if climate change is the culprit.

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News from India – the world’s largest producer of tea – is that the climate of Assam state in the country’s northeast is getting warmer and wetter. That’s not necessarily a bad thing for tea, per se, but it’s Assam’s unique geographical attributes that have made the full, astringent flavors of Assamese tea possible. Production has dropped by almost 100,000 tons since 2007 and the flavor of the tea is, according to Associated Press, weakened.

“Earlier, we used to get a bright, strong cup. Now it’s not so,” L.P. Chaliha, a professional tea taster, told the AP.

assam_tea_thumb[2]Tea grows best in subtropical climates but, like any plant, it also requires a dormancy period. With rising temperatures, the tea trees simply aren’t going dormant.

“In the tea-growing areas of Assam, average temperatures have risen 2C [3.6F] and rainfall has fallen by more than a fifth in the past 80 years,” reported Britain’s The Independent. “Globally, 2010 was the hottest year on record, according to temperature readings by Nasa’s Goddard Institute of Space Studies. An increase in temperatures affects the ability of the plant to grow.”

The British introduced commercial tea production to Assam in the 19th century. Attempts to plant popular Chinese varieties failed but a local strain of tea – Camellia sinensis var. assamica – proved quite adept for commercial needs. Assam tea “has more phenolic compounds and caffeine than China tea,” writes Harold McGee in his book, On Food and Cooking, “and produces a stronger, darker black tea.”

There’s more than just higher temperatures at work, though. Changing weather patterns also produce erratic weather which stresses the plants. While over all rainfall has decreased, the number of sunny days during the annual monsoon have decreased, as well, meaning the plants are struggling with damper conditions. Damper condition are perfect, however, for the tea mosquito bug, a particularly destructive pest.

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It isn’t only tea that’s affected by the change in weather patterns, by the way. French wine producers, too, are feeling the impact of warmer weather, according to AP, which affects not only the flavor of their products, but the alcohol content. The problem is only expected to get worse.

“The U.N. science network foresees temperatures rising up to 6.4 degrees Celsius (11.5 degrees F) by 2100,” reported the AP. “NASA reported earlier this month that the January-November 2010 period was the warmest globally in the 131-year record. U.N. experts say countries’ current voluntary pledges on emissions cuts will not suffice to keep the temperature rise in check.”

This is not good news for me, I’ve loved this dark, flavourful tea as long as I can remember – Ted  😦

Text from Delish.com

Chocolate Custard / Vaniljesaus med Sjokoladesmak

A custard recipe found in “32 Entirely New & Original Lutona Cocoa Recipes” published by E & S Jt C.W.S Ltd in the 1930s.
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Text from the booklet: Everyone knows that the most nourishing, most sustaining and appetising hot beverage in the world is Cocoa.

Everyone knows it as a beverage that may be freely partaken of at any time of the day by children and adults alike, without fear of indigestion or ill effects.

But the Cocoa you drink must be the best. and there is no finer Cocoa in all the world than Lutona.

Lutona is made from the choicest varieties of cocoas grown under ideal conditions and matured in Society’s own Depots in West Africa.

Every phase of its manufacture is under the direct control of the Society and the most rigid precautions are taken to ensure that the natural purity and full food value of the cocoa are retained.

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Kuwaiti Traditional Tea / Kuwaitiske Tradisjonell Te

A traditional hot beverage recipe from the Middle East
found on allrecipes.com
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This is the typical tea you will find in regular housed in Kuwait. Its deliciously aroma and the spices give it a rich taste.

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The History of Ovaltine

oveltine_10Ovaltine (Ovomaltine) is a brand of milk flavoring product made with malt extract (except in the blue packaging in the United States), sugar (except in Switzerland), and whey. Some flavors also have cocoa. Ovaltine, a registered trademark of Associated British Foods, is made by Wander AG, a subsidiary of Twinings which acquired the brand from Novartis in 2003, except in the United States and Australia, where Nestlé acquired the rights separately from Novartis later on.

History

Ovaltine was developed in Bern, Switzerland, where it is known by its original name, Ovomaltine (from ovum, Latin for “egg,” and malt, which were originally its main ingredients). Soon after its invention, the factory moved out to the village of Neuenegg, a few kilometres west of Berne, where it is still produced.

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Ovomaltine was exported to Britain in 1909; a misspelling of the name on the trademark registration application led to the name being shortened to Ovaltine in English-speaking markets. A factory was built in Kings Langley, which exported it to the United States as well. By 1915, Ovaltine was being manufactured in Villa Park, Illinois, for the U.S. market. Ovaltine was later manufactured in Peterborough, Ontario for distribution in Canada.

oveltine_03Originally advertised as consisting solely of “malt, milk, eggs, flavoured with cocoa”, the formulation has changed over the decades, and today several formulations are sold in different parts of the world.

The popular chocolate malt version is a powder which is mixed with hot or cold milk as a beverage. Malt Ovaltine (a version without cocoa) and Rich Chocolate Ovaltine (a version without malt) are also available in some markets. Ovaltine has also been available in the form of chocolate bars, chocolate Easter eggs, parfait, cookies, and breakfast cereals, where it is the only brand name that connects the cereals with the chocolate drink.

Ovaltine also manufactured PDQ Chocolate Flavor Beads, PDQ Choco Chips and Eggnog Flavored PDQ, which are no longer available. These drink mixes were very popular from the 1960s to the 1980s. Ovaltine discontinued the PDQ products around 1996.

oveltine_06The U.S. children’s radio series Little Orphan Annie (1931–1940) and Captain Midnight (1938–1949), and the subsequent Captain Midnight TV series (1954–1956), were sponsored by Ovaltine. They had promotions in which listeners could save proofs-of-purchase from Ovaltine jars to obtain radio premiums, such as “secret decoder ring” badges, or pins that could be used to decode messages in the program. Children from the time may remember that “Ovaltine” is an anagram for “Vital One”.

Another radio program aimed at five- to fourteen-year-olds, The League of Ovaltineys, was broadcast to Great Britain by Radio Luxembourg on Sunday evenings at 5:30 PM. Beginning in February 1935, it was broadcast until September 1939, when the outbreak of World War II forced closure of the station, and again after the war from 1952. Like with the U.S. program, listeners could obtain badges, pins, and secret codes. The Ovaltineys’ advertising jingle was regarded as one of the most successful jingles of the era and featured the iconic English singing trio The Beverley Sisters.

oveltine_05Villa Park, Illinois, was home to the Ovaltine factory in the United States until the company’s purchase and withdrawal in 1988. The Villa Park Historical Society maintains a permanent exhibit of Ovaltine advertising and memorabilia. The old factory was converted to loft apartments keeping the original floors and wall exposed.

In 1992, Himmel Group obtained the right to make and sell Ovaltine in the U.S. from Sandoz Nutrition Corporation. In 2007, Himmel sold their rights to Novartis. Presently Nestlé has the rights. With this purchase, Nestlé immediately ceased Ovaltine’s previous television advertising campaign targeted to older and nostalgic audiences, where Ovaltine was presented as more nutritious than former competitor Nesquik, and though it is still sold widely in the United States, Ovaltine is currently not advertised on American television.

Ovaltine in popular Culture

oveltine_07In William Trevor’s novel “Felicia’s Journey” Mr Hilditch repeatedly makes warm Ovaltine for Felicia and himself. “Later in the kitchen, he makes Ovaltine. […] She takes the mug he offers her. She sips the Ovaltine, leaning against the dresser.”  “I’m heating milk for Ovaltine.” He can think of nothing better to say, and she follows him into the kitchen, clearly more tranquil now. When he has made the drink he suggests they might like to have it in the big front room. ‘Make a change for you, eh?’

In 1947, Harry Gibson’s song “Who Put the Benzedrine in Mrs. Murphy’s Ovaltine” was popular on the radio.

oveltine_08One of the segments of A Christmas Story has Ralphie anxiously decoding the secret message on the Little Orphan Annie radio program, only to discover it’s no more than an encouragement to drink Ovaltine. He responds, “A crummy commercial?!”

In “The Fatigues”, episode 6 of season 8 of the popular ’90s show Seinfeld, Kenny Bania, a friend of main character Jerry Seinfeld, is given a joke by Jerry, regarding the name of Ovaltine. He says “Why do they call it Ovaltine? The jar is round. The mug is round. They should call it Roundtine.” to which Kenny Bania replies “That’s gold Jerry, gold!”.

When Dr. Frankenstein arrives at his grandfather’s castle in the movie “Young Frankenstein”, the housekeeper shows him to his room. After failing to interest the doctor in a nightcap of brandy or some warm milk, she tries one more time: “Ovaltine?”

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Text from Wikipedia

The History of Coffee

coffee_01The history of coffee goes at least as far back as the 10th century, with a number of reports and legends surrounding its first use. The native (undomesticated) origin of coffee is thought to have been Ethiopia. The earliest substantiated evidence of either coffee drinking or knowledge of the coffee tree is from the 15th century, in the Sufi monasteries of Yemen. By the 16th century, it had reached the rest of the Middle East, Persia, Turkey, Horn of Africa, and northern Africa. Coffee then spread to the Balkans, Italy and to the rest of Europe, to Indonesia and then to America.

History

The earliest credible evidence of either coffee drinking or knowledge of the coffee tree appears in the middle of the 15th century, in Yemen’s Sufi monasteries.

coffee_02Coffee beans were first exported from Ethiopia to Yemen. Yemeni traders brought coffee back to their homeland and began to cultivate the bean.] The word qahwa originally meant wine, and Sufis in Yemen used the beverage as an aid to concentration and as a kind of spiritual intoxication when they chanted the name of God. Sufis used it to keep themselves alert during their nighttime devotions. A translation of Al-Jaziri’s manuscript traces the spread of coffee from Arabia Felix (the present day Yemen) northward to Mecca and Medina, and then to the larger cities of Cairo, Damascus, Baghdad, and Constantinople. By 1414, the beverage was known in Mecca, and in the early 1500s was spreading to the Mameluke Sultanate of Egypt and North Africa from the Yemeni port of Mocha. Associated with Sufism, a myriad of coffee houses grew up in Cairo (Egypt) around the religious University of the Azhar.

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These coffee houses also opened in Syria, especially in the cosmopolitan city of Aleppo, and then in Istanbul, the capital of the Ottoman Empire, in 1554. In 1511, it was forbidden for its stimulating effect by conservative, orthodox imams at a theological court in Mecca. However, these bans were to be overturned in 1524 by an order of the Ottoman Turkish Sultan Suleiman I, with Grand Mufti Mehmet Ebussuud el-İmadi issuing a fatwa allowing the consumption of coffee. In Cairo, Egypt, a similar ban was instituted in 1532, and the coffeehouses and warehouses containing coffee beans were sacked. During the 16th century, it had already reached the rest of the Middle East, the Safavid Empire and the Ottoman Empire. From the Middle East, coffee drinking spread to Italy, then to the rest of Europe, and coffee plants were transported by the Dutch to the East Indies and to the Americas.

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Similarly, coffee was banned by the Ethiopian Orthodox Church some time before the 18th century. However, in the second half of the 19th century, Ethiopian attitudes softened towards coffee drinking, and its consumption spread rapidly between 1880 and 1886; according to Richard Pankhurst, “this was largely due to Emperor Menilek, who himself drank it, and to Abuna Matewos who did much to dispel the belief of the clergy that it was a Muslim drink.”

The earliest mention of coffee noted by the literary coffee merchant Philippe Sylvestre Dufour is a reference to bunchum in the works of the 10th century CE Persian physician Muhammad ibn Zakariya al-Razi, known as Rhazes in the West, but more definite information on the preparation of a beverage from the roasted coffee berries dates from several centuries later. One of the most important of the early writers on coffee was Abd al-Qadir al-Jaziri, who in 1587 compiled a work tracing the history and legal controversies of coffee entitled Umdat al safwa fi hill al-qahwa عمدة الصفوة في حل القهو He reported that one Sheikh, Jamal-al-Din al-Dhabhani (d. 1470), mufti of Aden, was the first to adopt the use of coffee (circa 1454).

He found that among its properties was that it drove away fatigue and lethargy, and brought to the body a certain sprightliness and vigour.

Europe

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Coffee was first introduced to Europe in the island of Malta in the 16th century, according to the tv documentary Madwarna. It was introduced there through slavery. Turkish muslim slaves had been imprisoned by the Knights of St John in 1565 – the year of the Great Siege of Malta, and they used to make their traditional beverage. Domenico Magri mentioned in his work Virtu del Kafé,

“..Turks, most skilful makers of this concoction”.

Also the German traveller Gustav Sommerfeldt in 1663 wrote “the ability and industriousness with which the Turkish prisoners earn some money, especially by preparing coffee, a powder resembling snuff tobacco, with water and sugar”. Coffee was a popular beverage in Maltese high society – many coffee shops opened.

Coffee was also noted in Aleppo by the German physician botanist Leonhard Rauwolf, the first European to mention it, as chaube, in 1573; Rauwolf was closely followed by descriptions from other European travellers.

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The vibrant trade between the Republic of Venice and the Muslims in North Africa, Egypt, and the East brought a large variety of African goods, including coffee, to this leading European port. Venetian merchants introduced coffee-drinking to the wealthy in Venice, charging them heavily for the beverage. In this way, coffee was introduced to the mainland of Europe. The first European coffee house apart from those in the Ottoman Empire and in Malta was opened in Venice in 1645.

England

coffee_12According to Leonhard Rauwolf’s 1583 account, coffee became available in England no later than the 16th century, largely through the efforts of the British East India Company and the Dutch East India Company. The first coffeehouse in England was opened in St. Michael’s Alley in Cornhill, London. The proprietor was Pasqua Rosée, the servant of Daniel Edwards, a trader in Turkish goods. Edwards imported the coffee and assisted Rosée in setting up the establishment. Oxford’s Queen’s Lane Coffee House, established in 1654, is still in existence today. By 1675, there were more than 3,000 coffeehouses throughout England, but there were many disruptions in the progressive movement of coffeehouses between the 1660s and 1670s. During the enlightenment, these early English coffee houses became gathering places used for deep religious and political discussions among the populace. This practice became so common, and potentially subversive, that Charles II made an attempt to crush coffee houses in 1675.

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The banning of women from coffeehouses was not universal, for example, women frequented them in Germany, but it appears to have been commonplace elsewhere in Europe, including in England.

Many in this period believed coffee to have medicinal properties. A 1661 tract entitled “A character of coffee and coffee-houses”, written by one “M.P.”, lists some of these perceived benefits:

‘Tis extolled for drying up the Crudities of the Stomack, and for expelling Fumes out of the Head. Excellent Berry! which can cleanse the English-man’s Stomak of Flegm, and expel Giddinesse out of his Head.

This new commodity proved controversial among some subjects, however. For instance, the anonymous 1674 “Women’s Petition Against Coffee” declared:

The Excessive Use of that Newfangled, Abominable, Heathenish Liquor called COFFEE …has…Eunucht our Husbands, and Crippled our more kind Gallants, that they are become as Impotent, as Age.

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Americas

Gabriel de Clieu brought coffee seedlings to Martinique in the Caribbean circa 1720. Those sprouts flourished and 50 years later there were 18,680 coffee trees in Martinique enabling the spread of coffee cultivation to Saint-Domingue (Haiti), Mexico and other islands of the Caribbean. The French territory of Saint-Domingue, saw coffee cultivated from 1734, and by 1788 it supplied half the world’s coffee. Coffee had a major influence on the geography of Latin America. The French colonial plantations relied heavily on African slave laborers. However, the dreadful conditions that the slaves worked in on coffee plantations were a factor in the soon-to-follow Haitian Revolution. The coffee industry never fully recovered there.

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Coffee also found its way to the Isle of Bourbon, now known as Réunion, in the Indian Ocean. The plant produced smaller beans and was deemed a different variety of arabica known as var. Bourbon. The Santos coffee of Brazil and the Oaxaca coffee of Mexico are the progeny of that Bourbon tree. Circa 1727, the King of Portugal sent Francisco de Melo Palheta to French Guiana to obtain coffee seeds to become a part of the coffee market. Francisco initially had difficulty obtaining these seeds, but he captivated the French Governor’s wife and she sent him enough seeds and shoots to commence the coffee industry of Brazil. In 1893, the coffee from Brazil was introduced into Kenya and Tanzania (Tanganyika), not far from its place of origin in Ethiopia, 600 years prior, ending its transcontinental journey.

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Meanwhile, coffee had been introduced to Brazil in 1727, although its cultivation did not gather momentum until independence in 1822. After this time, massive tracts of rainforest were cleared first from the vicinity of Rio and later São Paulo for coffee plantations.

coffee_11After the Boston Tea Party of 1773, large numbers of Americans switched to drinking coffee during the American Revolution because drinking tea had become unpatriotic.

Cultivation was taken up by many countries in the latter half of the 19th century, and almost all involved the large-scale displacement and exploitation of the indigenous Indian people. Harsh conditions led to many uprisings, coups and bloody suppression of peasants. The notable exception was Costa Rica, where lack of ready labor prevented the formation of large farms. Smaller farms and more egalitarian conditions ameliorated unrest over the 19th and 20th centuries.

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Brazil became the largest producer of coffee in the world by 1852 and it held that status ever since. It dominated world production, exporting more coffee than the rest of the world combined, from 1850 to 1950. The period since 1950 saw the widening of the playing field due to the emergence of several other major producers, most notably Colombia, Ivory Coast, Ethiopia, and, most recently, Vietnam, which overtook Colombia and became the second-largest producer in 1999 and reached 15% market share by 2011.

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Visiting a coffee house is not the social occasion it once was apparently – Ted

Text from Wikipedia

History and Facts About Mint

Fresh mint is available all year-round today, but it is most abundant in the warm summer months. Make the most of this versatile herb’s cooling and refreshing properties.

mint_01Mint is as tasty as it is healthy. Its essential oil is widely used in manufactured products such as toothpaste, shower gel and medicines for its naturally antibacterial and cooling qualities. In cooking, mint sprigs can be added to cooking water or the chopped leaves incorporated into a dish to make the most of this herb’s aromatic, flavoursome and digestive abilities.

Originally taken as a medicinal herb to treat stomach ache and chest pains, it is to this day the most called upon herb for soothing a great deal of ailments from indigestion to heartburn and the common cold to bad breath. That’s not all; mint can also provide a cooling sensation to the skin helping to treat minor burns and skin irritations due to its anti-inflammatory properties and it can ease and unblock the breathing and respiratory passages as well as relieve headaches; cup of mint tea anyone?

mint_03Mint is known to have originated in Asia and the Mediterranean region, mint has been known for its many benefits throughout history. Greeks used to clean their banqueting tables with the herb and added it to their baths to stimulate their bodies, whilst Romans used it in sauces, as an aid to digestion and as a mouth freshener. Medieval monks drew on the herb for its culinary and medicinal properties. In many cultures, mint symbolised hospitality and was offered as a sign of welcome and friendship to guests.

mint_05Mint derives its name from the ancient Greek mythical character Minthe. According to Greek myth, Minthe was a river nymph. Hades, the God of the Underworld, fell in love with Minthe and when Persephone, Hades’s wife, found out, she turned Minthe into a plant, so that everyone would walk all over her and crush her. Unable to undo the spell, Hades gave Minthe a magnificent aroma so that he could smell her and be near her when people trod on her.

mint_06Leaving this mythical world, we know that mint gets its tell tale enticing aroma from menthol, an essential oil present in its leaves. Mint contains a number of vitamins and minerals which are vital to maintain good health. Rich in Vitamins A and C it also contains smaller amounts of Vitamin B2 and minerals including calcium, zinc, copper and magnesium. And even though mint is mostly consumed in small quantities, the vital nutrients obtained are still beneficial and shouldn’t be underestimated.

Text from topfoodfacts.com

French Chocolate + 2 more / Fransk Sjokolade + 2 til

3 recipes from  “Best Chocolate and Cocoa Recipes”
published by Walter Baker & Company in 1931

1931 Walter Baker & Company - Best Chocolate and Cocoa Recipes_post

Text from the booklet:

Beverages – Steaming or Frosted –
Cocoa … The Food Drink

A fragrant cup of Baker’s Cocoa, beaded with creamy bubbles, is one of the most beneficial food drinks for both children and adults. Made with a generous supply of milk, it contains the vital food elements in admirably balanced proportion . . . elements necessary for buoyant health and robust bodies.

There is also glowing warmth for frosty mornings … sustaining energy for those in-between hours after school . . . and soothing nourishment at nightfall for tired minds and bodies.

Foamy, creamy-rich cocoa is a wonderful food with which to woo finicky child-appetites – an easy and delicious way of helping to include the daily quart of milk in their meals. Grown-ups welcome cocoa, too, as a way of building up run-down systems. And in this day of slimmer waists, cocoa is popular because it provides nourishment that is satisfying but not fattening.

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