March 14th is National Potato Chip Day
According to a traditional story, the original potato chip recipe was created in Saratoga Springs, New York. Popular versions say this happened on August 24, 1853, and versions by the late 19th century attributed the dish to George Crum, a half black, half Native American cook at Moon's Lake House, who was trying to appease an unhappy customer. He sliced the potatoes very thin, fried them until crisp and seasoned them with extra salt. The customer loved them. They soon became called "Saratoga Chips", a name that persisted into at least the mid-20th century.
A version of the story popularized in a 1973 national advertising campaign by St. Regis Paper Company, which manufactured packaging for chips, said that Crum's customer was Cornelius Vanderbilt. Crum was renowned as a chef and by 1860 owned his own lakeside restaurant, Crum's House.
Alternative explanations of the provenance of potato chips date them to recipes in Shilling Cookery for the People by Alexis Soyer (1845) or Mary Randolph's The Virginia House-Wife (1824) as well as two other contemporary cookbooks. In the 20th century, potato chips spread beyond chef-cooked restaurant fare and began to be mass-produced for home consumption.
The Dayton, Ohio-based Mike-sell's Potato Chip Company, founded in 1910, identifies as the "oldest potato chip company in the United States". New England-based Tri-Sum Potato Chips, originally founded in 1908 as the Leominster Potato Chip Company, in Leominster, Massachusetts claim to be America's first potato chip manufacturer. Chips sold in markets were usually sold in tins or scooped out of storefront glass bins and delivered by horse and wagon. The early potato chip bag was wax paper with the ends ironed or stapled together. At first, potato chips were packaged in barrels or tins, which left chips at the bottom stale and crumbled.
The average potato chip is .04 to.08 of an inch thick. During WWII production of potato chips halted because they were deemed an "unessential food". In Great Britain and many other parts of the world Potato Chips are referred to as "crisps". Chips, to them are French Fried potatoes.
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