Peanuts start out as flowers above ground. They then wilt, and the remaining peg goes back into the ground and turns into a peanut.
27. Raisa Gorbachev once told a British minister there were more than 300 ways to cook potatoes in the USSR. When he had doubts, she sent him a cookbook and a note saying, “My apologies for being somewhat inaccurate: in fact, there are five hundred, rather than three hundred, recipes to cook potatoes.”
28. Cockroaches won’t eat cucumbers. This is due to a chemical in cucumbers (trans-2-nonenal) which acts as a natural repellent for ants and roaches.
29. Wales’ national symbol is a leek because, on the eve of the battle against the Saxons, St. David advised the Britons to wear leeks in their caps so as to easily distinguish friend from foe. This helped to secure a great victory.
30. Broccoli, parsley, Brussels sprouts, and red bell peppers all contain more vitamin C per 100g serving than oranges. Chili peppers contain 400% more.
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Scientists recreated a 9th-century onion and garlic eye remedy from an Anglo-Saxon manuscript and found that it killed 90% of antibiotic-resistant staph bacteria (MRSA).
32. Potatoes have a bad rap but are actually highly beneficial to your health. They are packed with Vitamin C, Potassium, Fiber, Vitamin B6 and Kukoamines which help aid in lowering blood pressure. In fact, scientists have found that humans can survive indefinitely on a diet of just potatoes and butter.
33. The difference in the color of green/yellow/red bell peppers comes from the different stages in their ripening process, not that they are different varieties.
34. Kale, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cauliflower, cabbage, and kohlrabi were all selectively bred from the mustard plant.
35. Near Frankfurt in central Germany, a type of cheese is served that is topped with raw onions. It is locally known as “hand cheese with music.” When strangers ask why it is called this way, they are told: “the music comes later.” This is a running gag pointing at the farts caused by the onions. Cheese is served in the water, and is pickled. It smells and tastes absolutely putrid.
Fenugreek contains an extremely potent aromatic compound called solotone and when consumed in heavy amounts, can prompt a sweet maple-y odor in sweat and urine.
37. Tomatoes, potatoes, paprika, peppers, and eggplant are part of a family called 'nightshade' foods, which contain a toxin called 'solanine.' Ingesting it in large quantities can cause hallucinations, paralysis, and death.
38. Mint isn’t just one species of plant, but it's a whole family of related plants known for having aromas in all parts and includes widely used culinary herbs, such as basil, rosemary, sage, oregano, thyme, marjoram, and lavender.
39. Many observant Buddhists avoid eating the “five pungent roots” (or "five pungent vegetables”) - onions, garlic, chives, leeks, and scallions - because they are thought to have an aphrodisiac effect that distracts them from meditation and other spiritual practices.
40. There exists a kind of garlic called “solo garlic” which doesn’t have separate cloves but is just one solid piece.
Children will, on average, eat 54% more fruits and vegetables if recess comes before lunch (versus the other way around).
42. About 40% of the corn grown in the USA is used for ethanol to add to fuel and another 40% is used for livestock feed.
43. In 2013, an eight-year-old girl in Russia found the bodies of her parents, brother, and grandmother in a basement after they were poisoned by gas from rotting potatoes.
44. Potato chips were invented in 1853 when a cook got fed up with a customer sending his fried potatoes back to the kitchen for being too soggy. To spite the customer, he sliced the potato as thin as he could, deep-fried them to hell, and dumped piles of salt on them. They were instantly loved.
45. Onions are eaten and grown in more countries than any other vegetable, with at least 175 countries producing an onion crop and unlike wheat (the largest global crop by area harvested), the onion is a staple of every major cuisine.
Though potatoes are native to the Americas, the majority of the world’s potatoes are now grown in Asia, and that though soybeans are native to Asia, the majority of the world’s soybeans are now grown in the Americas.
47. The potato has been studied by NASA as an important food source for long space voyages, and that the number of potato plants (grown onboard a space ship) needed to sustain one astronaut is also the number of potato plants required to process the air breathed by one astronaut.
48. Artichokes make other foods taste sweeter due to a chemical known as cynarin. This can be used to your advantage when pairing with wines that would otherwise be extremely dry.
49. In Ancient Egypt, onions were worshipped as they were considered a symbol of eternity. Many Pharaohs were actually buried with onions. Paintings of onions have also been found on the inner walls of pyramids and tombs.
50. Storing potatoes with an apple keeps them from sprouting.