Hello foodies! We’ve got a bizarre article for you this time around to make you go “HUH?” and “Hmmm” as you enlighten yourself on some of the interesting stories that exist behind our commonly consumed food and beverages.
We hope some of these weird facts don’t put you off too much, as the goal is to gain some info while having a good chuckle and hopefully, it’ll be a fun fact to share at a party!
From cornflakes designed to quell
sexual desires to frog-preserving milk, these quirky food facts are sure to tickle your taste buds and your sense of wonder.
1. Kellogg’s Cornflakes
Can you believe that the go-to breakfast choice and kuih honey cornflake for many of us was actually designed to be a “passion-killer”? Yep… It’s true! In 1894, a guy named John Harvey Kellogg created these bland cornflakes with one mission: To suppress the urges of masturbation and other sexual passions.
He believed in a life of simplicity and opposed things like meat, caffeine, and even, well, anything too “passionate”.
No wonder they made those cornflakes so tasteless back then! Luckily, we’ve got tastier options today…
2. Graham Crackers
On to the next passion-killing snack.. the graham cracker. Back in the 19th century, Reverend Sylvester Graham had some interesting ideas about food and desire (similar to John Harvey Kellogg). What is with these old dudes and hating the natural human order…
He thought giving in to your “carnal desires” could lead to all sorts of trouble, from epilepsy to insanity. So, he invented Graham Crackers in 1829, biscuit-like treats with the sole purpose of crushing those urges, especially in young folks. It might sound a bit absurd now, but back then, he actually had followers!
So the blander the food.. the less intense your sexual desires are (allegedly).
3. Sup Torpedo (Bull’s Penis Soup)
Moving on to a special Malaysian delicacy! The Sup Torpedo or better known as bull’s penis soup. You read that right. Now, this meal takes guts – literally! Imagine a soup made from a bull’s penis (sometimes even the testicles) and you’ve got Sup Torpedo. It’s said to be chewy, kind of like cartilage, and believed to be an aphrodisiac.
This dish is said to have made its debut in Penang by a fellow Indian-Muslim chef named Hameed, and it’s best served with slices of Bengali bread.
The soup itself is said to be quite delicious as the bull’s meats are slow-cooked in a broth of rasam powder, cumin, black pepper, coriander, ginger and finished with shallots.
Usually, the penis is chopped up in pieces in the soup but the bull’s private part can go up to 90 centimetres long. So if you have a preference for having it uncut (pun definitely intended) then let the cook know to not cut ’em up for you to enjoy your meal!
4. 7up Lithium
We all love a good soda drink, right? Especially the refreshing, bubbly zesty 7up. Unfortunately, this drink had a twisted, poisonous past…
Before it became the 7UP we know today, this soda that was created in 1929 had a pretty lengthy name: Bib-Label Lithiated Lemon-Lime Soda. And guess what? It used to contain lithium, a mood-enhancing element that was believed to be used to treat bipolar disorder and depression (also the chemical most found in batteries).
They marketed it as a mood booster! But in 1948, the US Food and Drug Administration put an end to that idea.
5. Milk with a side of Frog
When you think of preserving milk, frogs probably don’t come to mind. But before modern refrigeration, Russians and those in Finland used to put living Russian brown frogs in milk to keep it fresh. These frogs had some special peptides on their skin that helped kill bacteria.
Who would’ve thought frogs could be fridge substitutes? Not us!
6. “Nasi Le, Mak!”
Let’s wrap up this weird article (and at some points, kinda disturbing facts) with a more heartwarming tale. Are you familiar with the folk tale that is said to be the origin name of our beloved national dish?
In a little village near Malacca, a widow named Mak Kuntum and her daughter, Seri, lived a simple life. One day, Seri accidentally spilt coconut milk into a pot of rice, filling the room with an amazing aroma. When Mak Kuntum tasted it, she asked, “What did you cook, Seri?” Her reply? “Nasi le, Mak!” (Rice la, mother!).
And that’s how coconut milk-infused rice became known as nasi lemak. It’s amazing how simple accidents can create delicious traditions!
And that’s a wrap on our little bizarre foodie escapade, folks! Hungry for more weird food facts? Share with us any other ones that we missed out on in the comments below.