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Potato Based

Most people on the planet enjoy potatoes.  In fact, the only food ahead of potatoes on the list is rice.  Potatoes are a root that is packed with starch and carbohydrates.  In short, a potato is essentially a small packet of energy that is easily digested.  French fries are a big favorite when it comes to a snack, but they can’t be stored on shelves and must be cooked fresh.

Truly, the potato chip is the ruler of all salty snacks.  Those thin, deep fried, salt covered chips are (according to some) America’s number one snack food!

Potato chips are an American invention loosely based on the French fry.  As the story goes, a Native American Cook in New England stumbled upon it at the request of a patron.  The year was 1853, and George Crum was the chef at the Saratoga Springs Resort in New York.  The restaurant he cooked for was Moon Lake Lodge.  Crum had been making French-fried potatoes for quite some time.  They were thick-cut potatoes that had to be eaten with a fork.  Traditionally they were eaten as a real dinner side dish.

A guest who had been visiting the resort found the French fries to be too thick, and asked for a thinner version.  Crum tried thinning the cut a bit but the customer again asked for even thinner ones.  Apparently out of spite, he cut them so thin that they would not be edible with a fork.  They turned out to be extremely thin and crisp.  What he didn’t know was that he had just created one of the ultimate snack foods of all time.  Suffice to say the customer loved the new chips, and so did many other guests at the restaurant.  Moon Lake Lodge began selling these ’Saratoga chips’

The chips were still served primarily as a dinner food.  They had to be peeled by hand until the invention of a mechanical peeler in 1920.  After that, potato chips exploded across the Northeastern seaboard.

Herman Lay, of Lay’s potato chip fame, was Instrumental to the proliferation of chips across the rest of the country.  He drove around the southern States selling chips out of his car.  Eventually he would merge with Frito in 1961 to form the dominant chipmaker in America: Frito Lay.

Chips aren’t the only potato snack out there.  A number of variants include processed potato snacks that aren’t made from sliced potatoes.  These snacks are usually made from either small sticks of potato or finely ground potato that’s been pressed into a chip shape.

When it comes to a salty snack, most people think of potato chips.  The two go hand in hand.