One of our favorite snack foods, the potato chip, was created by accident. Well, no, that’s not exactly true. George Crum, a chef at Moon’s Lake House, knew exactly what he was doing. He just didn’t intend for the chips to become a popular snack. In fact, he fried up the thin slices of potato out of spite.
Back in the 1800s, when French fries first came to America, they were considered a very high-class dish. A lot of fancy restaurants served them as a main course. In 1853, Cornelius Vanderbilt, the billionaire railroad magnate, came into Moon’s Lake House and ordered French fries. However, when the fries were delivered to his table, he sent them back, saying they were too soggy and weak.
Cornelius proceeded to send the fries back four more times until the chef, George Crum, had had enough. George lost it. Really, truly, lost it. In one of the pettiest moves in culinary history, he took a vegetable peeler to a potato and made ultra-thin slices, which he then fried. Unfortunately, or perhaps, fortunately, for George, Cornelius ended up loving the thinly sliced, fried potatoes.
Despite not getting the revenge he was hoping for, ol’ George managed to do alright for himself. In fact, he opened up his own restaurant entirely centered around his new, popular dish: potato chips. They say revenge is a dish best served cold, but in this case, it seems serving it up crispy turned out just fine.
Watch the video below to find out more about the fascinating history of the potato chip!