Archives for the day Sunday, October 17th, 2010

History of Carrots

 Have you ever wondered what are the differences between the whole carrot and the baby carrot? Have you ever wondered why baby carrots are always comes in a bag and already being peeled for you?

 For long time, I was wondering why I have never seen baby carrots with skin on in a bag, but now I know the answer.

 Recently, I came across an article in local newspaper about baby carrots. Some people might think that baby carrots are the carrots that were harvested much earlier than regular whole carrots, but did you know that baby carrots are the one that were cut in short length and run through a grinder to make the baby carrot shape you are familiar with? Thus, I have never seen a baby carrots with skin on at the grocery store.

 According to the article written by Kathleen Purvis, the baby carrot idea was invented by a farmer who got tired of wasting imperfect carrots, and changed them into something he could sell. The ground carrots matter is screened and then will be used as mulch.

 To read full article by Kathleen Purvis on baby carrots,please click here .

 On the talk of carrots, did you know that very bright orange colored sweet domestic carrots were  not existed long long time ago?

 According to carrotmuseum website, before 900’s there were purple and yellow carrots documented around in Afghanistan. Very first cultivated carrots were in Afghanistan,Iran,and Pakistan almost 5000 years ago.

  Carrots were recognized as one of the plants in the garden of the Egyptian King Melodach Baladan in 8th century.

 Very first time carrots appear in Roman writing was in 200 A.D. and appear in the cook book in 230 A.D.

 These purple carrots were introduced to west by Arabs in about 10th century. Then, gradually, started seeing yellow variety in Europe and then later, white carrots were seen in Europe.

 The white carrots are considered developed from yellow variety, and white carrots are NOT parsnip. Parsnips and carrots are related but they are two different things. However, many times, carrot and parsnip were confused in many historical references, and parsnip and carrot were used interchangeably. Orange carrots are considered to be developed from yellow carrots around Holland.

 People crossed both with cultivated and wild variety and produced different kinds of carrots and orange carrots were documented around 1500’s in Northern Europe, and it is believed that Dutch growers developed the tough, bitter carrots to sweet,juicy orange carrots today.

 Carrots were then introduced to North America via English settlers in 1600’s in Virginia.

 To read full article at carrotmuseum on history of carrots,please click here .

 Carrots seems to be the vegetable with long,long history behind them.

 I remember my mother used to say “Eat carrots for good eye sight”. Carrots’ orange skin color is from beta carotene with some alpha carotene,which converts to Vitamin A (good for skin and vision in dim light) in the body.

 I wonder if the color of the skin of carrots were different, it provides different benefit from each other.

 According to carrotmuseum website, purple carrots contains anthocyanin and it acts as anti-oxidants.

 More on purple carrots at carrotmuseum website here .

 It looks like UK brought purple carrots back to plate in 2002 and they seem to have a talk of re-introducing white and other variety of carrots. It said to be sweet purple carrots but I wonder depending on the color of the carrots,if it taste slightly different each other…just like red pepper is a bit sweeter than green pepper…

 
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Oct 17, 2010 | 0 | Uncategorized