National Peanut Day
September 13 is National Peanut Day. It's not often that groundnut is so popular that it has its own celebration, but peanuts are loved all around the United States. If nothing else because they are a crucial part of an American classic, the PB & J sandwich. Peanuts are a great and healthy snack and ingredient, so grab a handful of them and go nuts today!
There are no records of the origin of this holiday, but it was likely born from people's love of peanuts. We do know that peanuts likely originally come from South America, where they have been growing for around 3,500. However, against popular belief, peanuts are not actually a nut but rather a legume. This is because they grow underground, not on trees, and inside a pod.
Peanuts were not always consumed by humans, as the process of planting and harvesting peanuts used to be a lot of work, and also very risky for farmers. Eventually, new inventions in farm technology such as planters and harvesters, made it easier to farm peanuts, and they grew in popularity. It was the favorite snack for soldiers fighting in the Civil War, and they were widely sold as snacks in traveling circuses.
The popularity of the peanut was furthered by Dr. George Washington Carver who wrote “How to Grow the Peanut and 105 Ways of Preparing it for Human Consumption” in 1916. Over a century later, some of Dr. Carver's methods and techniques are still being used.
Many people love peanuts because they are a guilt-free snack, and on top of that, they are packed with fiber and protein, as well as many vitamins and nutrients. It is no wonder then that peanuts are the top snack nut in the United States, dominating two-thirds of the market.
How to celebrate National Peanut Day
Peanuts are so versatile that you could treat yourself to a whole three-course-meal of dishes that include peanuts, such as a soup or salad for an appetizer, peanut stir-fry, or peanut roast for main, and then a peanut butter cake or cookies for dessert. Make a celebration of it and invite other peanut lover friends over.
If you are more of a traditionalist when it comes to peanuts, have a classic PB & J as a treat.