Tuesday, August 19, 2014

8/19 CÉSAR CANAVATI, 2014 MEXICO FOOD FAIR AT THE LOS ANGELES CONVENTION CENTER, HAPPY NATIONAL POTATO DAY

CÉSAR CANAVATI – 2014 MEXICO FOOD FAIR AT THE LOS ANGELES CONVENTION CENTER (AUGUST 21-23)

The 2014 Mexico Food Fair at the Los Angeles Convention Center (August 21-23) is an unprecedented display of the cultural & gastronomical wealth of Mexico and how the producers from Mexico can work together with American businesses. The Mexico Food Fair will be open, free of charge to the general public and will offer a wide array of food tastings, cooking lessons and conferences from award winning Chefs as well as multiple astonishing artistic performances throughout the three days of the event.

The Mexico Food Fair will honor the variety and lavishness of Mexican States such as  Jalisco, which is vast in its gastronomy and will present products including spicy peppers, chocolate, granola, agave syrup, fruit pulp, and, of course: Tequila! Aguascalientes will be represented with its traditional Chile Relleno (stuffed Poblano pepper) and quince jelly and Oaxaca will introduce samples of their iconic Mezcal and Mole Sauces, which are internationally reckoned as unique pieces of cultural identity. Visitors to México Food Fair will also enjoy the demonstrations of the different products that will be displayed, while also learn different cooking techniques from renowned Chefs.

In addition to having over 8,000 members of the public attend last year, the Mexico Food Fair is also a unique gathering place for buyers, intermediaries, distributors and end consumers of Mexican processed foods to meet directly with the top producers and suppliers of goods which range from dehydrated foods, canned goods, cereals, pasts, snacks, sauces and dressings, to every imaginable processed food products. The event is backed by the Mexican of Agriculture and Food (SAGARPA) and is set to strengthen trade relations between the USA and Mexico, increase production volumes, stimulate sales and generate jobs in both countries.

www.mexicofoodfair.com 


HAPPY NATIONAL POTATO DAY 

There are over a thousand different types of potatoes. Potatoes have become an integral part of much of the world’s cuisine. It is the world’s fourth-largest food crop, following rice, wheat, and maize. In Europe per capita production is still the highest in the world, but the most rapid expansion over the past few decades has occurred in southern and eastern Asia. Potato consumption is expanding strongly in developing countries, which now account for more than half of the global harvest and where the potato’s ease of cultivation and high energy content have made it a valuable cash crop for millions of farmers. China is now the world’s largest potato-producing country, and nearly a third of the world’s potatoes are harvested in China and India. The potato continues to be enjoyed in Ireland today. The year 2008 was declared the International Year of the Potato by the United Nations, noting that the potato is a staple food in the diet of the world’s population, and affirming the need to focus world attention on the role that the potato can play in providing food security and eradicating poverty.

SPUD TRIVIA/FACTS

  • In October 1995 the potato became the first vegetable to be grown in space! NASA wanted to develop super-nutritious and versatile spuds to feed astronauts on long space voyages.
  • Americans eat more potatoes than any other kind of vegetable — on average, each person downs1/3 of a pound per day!
  • Potatoes contain more potassium than bananas
  • Louis XVI of France wore potato flowers in his buttonhole to stimulate interest in the plant.
  • Potatoes were often eaten aboard ship to prevent scurvy, a disease caused by a deficiency of vitamin C.
  • The Incas used the potato to treat injuries. They also thought it made childbirth easier.
  • The jacket potato contains more vitamin B1 than portion of broccoli or a portion cauliflower
  • China is now the world’s largest potato-producing country, and nearly a third of the world’s potatoes are harvested in China and India
  • 1801 -  the year  French Fries were first served to America
  • 1853 – the year the potato crisp invented in New York
  • 2008 was the UN International Year of the Potato
  • The world’s fourth most important food crop, after maize, wheat and rice.
  • At one time, the Scots refused to eat potatoes. Why? Because potatoes weren’t mentioned in the Bible!
  • In the late 1500s, the Spanish thought potatoes were a kind of a truffle; they called them “tartuffo.”
  • Eighteenth-century agronomist Antoine-Auguste Parmentier used reverse psychology to convince the French to accept the potato as a safe food. He posted guards around potato fields during the day to prevent people from stealing them—but he left those same fields unguarded at night. Every night, thieves would sneak into the fields and leave with sacks of potatoes!
  • The annual diet of an average global citizen in the first decade of the 21st century included about 33 kg (73 lb) of potato.
  • The word ‘spud’ comes from spuds, which were used to dig holes for potatoes.
  • The world’s biggest potato was grown in Germany in 1997 weighing in at 7.5lb – the same weight as a small dog


NUTRITIONAL INFORMATION
Think of spuds as power on the plate. Rich in carbohydrates, potatoes are a fantastic fuel for our bodies. Unadulterated and unprocessed, they are probably the best and most delicious source of starchy energy in our diets and in a world where many carbohydrates are so processed that they are devoid of essential nutrients, the potato stands head and shoulders above the rest. Aside from the starchy carbohydrate, potatoes also contain some protein, little or no fat and  have almost twice the amount of fibre as the same amount of brown rice.

They are a good source of potassium, important for a healthy blood pressure and contribute a significant amount of vitamin C, a powerful antioxidant and important for immune health. In a world increasingly concerned with carbon footprints and the effects of global warming, this is an opportunity to go back to basics and re-discover the potential of the potato, which, even in the harshest of climates, can more quickly produce nutritious food, on less land, than any other major crop. So let’s get back to our roots and grow them or buy locally. Boil them, bake them, mash them, eat them! Put potatoes back on Irish plates!

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