Since humans learned how to cook, preserve, ferment, freeze, dry or extract food, we have never stopped processing food. Processed food promotes species evolution, empire expansion, and space exploration. The following are some of the most representative examples of the development of processed food over millions of years.
- Barbecue 1.8 million years ago
Compared to raw food, fire-roasted food is easier to digest and more nutritious. Some anthropologists believe that cooking is one of the necessary conditions for the development of Homo sapiens’s large brains.
This ancient food still occupies a place on people’s tables today.
2, 30,000 years ago bread
Agriculture began about 12,000 years ago, but early Europeans started baking bread thousands of years earlier. In 2010, scientists found surprising evidence of starch granules on mortars and pestles used by primitive people in countries such as Italy, Russia, and the Czech Republic. These starch granules come from the roots of cattails and ferns. People at that time pulverized the roots of these two types of plants, mixed with water, and baked them into bread.
The dough bag is convenient to carry, rich in nutrition, and not easy to spoil. However, it is a step backward in nutrition. Comparative studies have shown that the food diversity and nutrient levels of the Neolithic hunter-gatherers are higher than those of farmers in the same period. From the perspective of energy consumption, hunters and gatherers are also more efficient: the food a farmer spends 10 hours on planting has the same energy as the food obtained by hunters who gather and hunt for 6 hours.
That being the case, why do you want to make bread? Anthropologists dispute why agriculture has become the mainstream, but one thing is certain: bread and agriculture complement each other. As human society begins to rely on bread as a staple food, people have to spend more energy on agriculture (and vice versa).
- 7000 BC beer
Beer first appeared as a by-product of the production of bread, and the timing is difficult to determine. The oldest physical evidence is a pottery fragment from 3500 BC found in Iran, but archaeologists such as Patrick McGovern of the University of Pennsylvania in the United States believe that the earliest malt liquor was used as a bread maker in 7000 BC. A by-product of appeared. Early human society quickly accepted this accidental product: the ancient Sumerians might even have used as much as 40% of their grains to brew beer.
With the help of archaeologists, modern brewers are also trying to remake ancient beer. McGovern cooperated with Dogfish Head Craft Brewery to try to brew wines from ancient Egypt and ancient China; while Great Lakes Brewing Company, with the help of researchers from the University of Chicago, is based on a poem written 3800 years ago to Sumer An ode to the goddess of beer Ninkasi brews beer.
- Mexican tortillas 6700 BC
The written record of growing corn is later than the time when Spanish explorers arrived in the Americas, but the earliest archaeological evidence can be traced back to 8,700 years ago. In the early Americans, the corn kernels were soaked in lime water to make a paste to release the nutrients in the corn kernels.
- 5400 BC wine
The earliest evidence of wine making was found in the Zagros Mountains of Iran. Subsequently, the Phoenicians who were good at sailing spread the craft from Lebanon to Egypt and the Mediterranean in the West.
- Cheese from 5000 BC
Take the milk, put the milk into the stomach of the ruminant, and then stir it. Scholars believe that this may be closer to the process by which humans invented cheese. The earliest evidence for cheese production comes from some archaeological sites in Poland with a history of more than 7,000 years. Archaeologists found cream residues in porous ceramic containers unearthed there. These containers may have been used as basic filters in those days. However, the domestication of sheep and goats began as early as 8000 BC, and the domestication of cattle would be 1,000 years in the morning. Therefore, cheese production may be earlier than currently estimated.
Like some other processed foods, cheese is likely to be a by-product from the production of certain necessities in the first place. Cheese, yogurt and cream can be kept much longer than fresh milk. Humans in the Neolithic Age were still unable to digest lactose-the widespread appearance of lactose-digesting genes in humans is only a matter of the past few thousand years. Bacteria used in cheese making can convert lactose in milk into lactic acid, making dairy products easier to digest.
We are not sure which type of cheese was the earliest, but research on the history of geography has uncovered some clues. In the warmer Middle East and South Asia, people are likely to use a lot of table salt to help preserve cheese. Today, people in the Middle East, Greece and Southwest Asia still use this method when making goat cheese. In areas with a cooler climate, less salt can be added when storing cheese, which allows those region-specific microorganisms to grow in the cheese, such as Roquefort and Brie. Famous cheeses such as Swiss cheese and Swiss cheese can have their unique flavor.
7, 4500 BC olive oil
The tradition of olive oil production comes from farmers in the eastern Mediterranean. Unprocessed olives are too bitter to swallow, but for thousands of years, farmers in the eastern Mediterranean have inherited an olive processing technique: the olives are fermented in lye and then the olive oil is pressed.
- Palm oil 3000 BC
In ancient Egyptian tombs, people found oil made from palm berries. Nowadays, processed food such as palm oil has become people’s daily necessities, with low price and long-term storage.
- 2400 BC pickled vegetables
The pickle was not invented by a Korean friend.
The ancient Mesopotamians (Mesopotamians) first invented the method of preserving vegetables for other times outside the harvest season by soaking vegetables in vinegar.
- Noodles in 2000 BC
Noodles are a traditional delicacy of the Chinese nation. The earliest evidence of this very popular food comes from noodles made of millet preserved in a pottery bowl found in Northwest China. Various wheat crops are usually used to make dough. These crops appeared in China more than 2,000 years ago and then spread to the West.
- 1900 BC Chocolate
The Pre-Olmeccivilizations in Central America grind cocoa beans into powder, then mix the powder with water and shake it to make a foamy drink. More than 3400 years later, Hernando Cortés brought cocoa beans to Spain, where people first added sugar to this foamy drink.
- 1500 BC Bacon
Chinese chefs were the first to use salt to marinate pork. This was not only an early method of preserving pork, but it also inspired the aroma of pork.
Although often guest performers in western restaurants, bacon is authentic Chinese food.
13.Kimchi in 700 AD
The first Korean kimchi was quite simple, it was cabbage fermented with salt. With the Japanese invasion of North Korea in the 16th century, the red peppers imported from Japan by Portuguese missionaries from the New World were also brought to North Korea. Since then, the Korean diet has begun to add this hot element.
- 700 AD Sushi
Sushi was originally a way for people in Southeast Asia to preserve fish meat: salted fish, wrapped in rice, after several months of fermentation, peeled and thrown away the rotten rice outside (because this is too wasteful, sushi has always been rich Food that can only be enjoyed by humans) and only fermented fish. This is very similar to the process of making beef jerky now-part of the food is spoiled, but the remaining part becomes more tender and delicious. By the 19th century, the Japanese began to omit the long-term fermentation process and added vinegar to the rice to produce the strong flavor of sushi.
- 965 AD tofu
The origin of tofu is very mysterious, but the earliest written records appear in the works of Chinese writer Tao Gu during the Five Dynasties period. He described a poor county prime minister who was too poor to buy mutton and could only buy tofu, a gel made from cooked soybeans.
16th and mid-15th century coffee
Westerners are obsessed with coffee, but coffee first came from the Arab world. Regarding the origin of coffee, the most reliable evidence comes from the Sufi monastery in Yemen in the mid-15th century. The monks recorded a coffee trade between Yemen and Ethiopia (the origin of coffee beans). Regarding the exact situation of Ethiopian coffee beans at that time, there is no way to know because no records have been kept. Later, Yemen imported coffee beans from Ethiopia and eventually cultivated their own varieties, which were then spread to Egypt, Damascus and Mecca. By the 16th century, coffee shops had spread throughout the Arabian Peninsula.
Initially, coffee was only used to treat stomach pain, sluggishness, narcolepsy and other diseases. However, coffee is more than just a cure. Some Arab writers have realized its potential in the social field. This potential may be too great: the coffee and cafe culture, and the small talk and games incorporated into it, once led the Governor of Mecca to issue a coffee ban in 1511. Thirteen years later, Sultan Selim I of Turkey overturned the coffee ban that caused headaches for Mecca people.
For European travellers and explorers in the 16th century, coffee was another mysterious existence in the Eastern world. There is one of the earliest allusions about coffee written by a European: In 1582, the German physicist and botanist Leonhard Rauwolf described a kind of “sufficiency (Turks and Arabs)” The most respected and excellent drink… It is almost as black as ink and can relieve stomach pain.” At the end of the 16th century, in an early case of modern marketing, Vietnamese merchants began to import coffee from the Middle East and sell it as a luxury beverage. By the mid-17th century, French, British and Dutch people began to admire coffee.
17, 1767 soda
In Leeds, England, the British scientist Joseph Priestley who discovered oxygen put a bowl of water on top of a beer barrel to invent soda water.
Shake it before drinking, it will taste better. If you don’t believe me, buy a can of Coke and try it.
18.1894 corn flakes
To satisfy the Adventist’s vegetarianism, John Harvey Kellogg and his brother Will Keith Kellogg invented corn flakes in 1894 as a Part of his health regimen at the Battle Creek Nursing Home in Michigan, USA.
With just a bowl, some milk, a spoon, a spoonful of sugar and a box of corn flakes, you can enjoy a delicious breakfast.
19, 1926 luncheon meat
The earliest predecessor of luncheon meat is “Hommel Five Spice Ham”, which is nothing more than marinated pork shoulder in cans. Many competing manufacturers quickly invented their own similar products. In 1937, Jay Hormel, in order to distinguish his products from other similar products, changed the formula by grinding pork, adding salt and spices, and wrapping the pork in aspic gelatin. Most importantly, before the start of the Second World War, Homer gave this product a catchy name-“Lunch Meat” (Spam), the word is “pork shoulder and ham.” (Shoulder of pork and ham) abbreviation. The US military believed that this was the perfect marching food, so it bought 150 million pounds (about 68,000 tons). After the Second World War, no matter where the US military goes, canned luncheon meat will inevitably follow.
During the Korean War, canned luncheon meat swept the black market and was even used to pay for medical and military intelligence. Today, luncheon meat is still popular in Korea and other parts of Asia, and luncheon meat is even added to traditional dishes, such as Korean laver rice and assorted scrambled eggs in Okinawa.
20 1950s chicken nuggets
The chicken nuggets here refer to the Colonel’s chicken nuggets or the McNuggets
Robert C. Baker, a food scientist at Cornell University in the United States, grinds the chicken pieces and wraps them in breadcrumbs to increase the demand for chicken consumption by people in northern New York.