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In 1912, The Goo Goo Cluster Was Invented In Nashville

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March 8th is National Peanut Cluster Day!  Melted chocolate mixed with peanuts make a perfect combination for a sweet and salty deliciousness!

Two things had to happen for peanut clusters to even exist.  First, a method had to be invented for the cocoa bean to be processed and transformed into what we know as chocolate.  That process wasn’t widely used until about the late 1890s and just about the same time the second extraordinary thing happened; agriculture found a way to grow the peanut and bring it to the public with steel tools and steam power.

It didn’t take long for confectioneries to add the now readily available peanuts to melted chocolate.  The sheer simplicity of the salty peanuts added to sweetened chocolate is a mouthwatering temptation few can resist, even today.

  • ‘Peanut Cluster’ is referred to a type of candy that mixes melted chocolate and peanuts.
  • These crunchy treats are a perfect combination of a sweet and salty deliciousness.
  • There are several versions of peanut clusters including caramel clusters, butterscotch clusters and chocolate peanut clusters.
  • Peanuts have a higher antioxidant capacity over grapes, green tea, tomatoes, spinach, carrots and many more.
  • Peanut clusters have been around for many years dating way before 1912 when they were made popular by the Goo Goo Cluster.
  • In 1912, in a copper kettle at the Standard Candy Company at Clark & First Avenue in Nashville, TN, the world’s first ever combination candy bar was invented. A roundish mound of caramel, marshmallow nougat, fresh roasted peanuts and real milk chocolate; its renegade shape was more difficult to wrap than the conventional rectangular or square shapes of the day.
  • More importantly, this was the first time multiple elements were being mass-produced in a retail confection. Previous to the advent of the Goo Goo Cluster, candy bar manufacturing consisted of bars solely using chocolate, caramel or taffy. The Goo Goo Cluster represented the first time a bar consisted of more than just one principal ingredient
  • For a time it was impossible to ask for a Goo Goo by name since no one could decide what to call the delicious thick clusters of candy. The story of how the candy came to be named comes in many versions. Some people say that it was named Goo Goo because it’s the first thing a baby says. Howell Campbell, Jr., the man whose father invented the Goo Goo Cluster, says that his father used to ride the streetcar to work every day and he would talk the matter over with fellow passengers. Mr. Campbell was announcing to fellow passengers on the streetcar his newborn son’s first words and a school teacher made the connection with the candy. She suggested Mr. Campbell name his treat Goo Goo! It is so good, people will ask for it from birth.
  • It takes about 540 peanuts to make a 12-ounce jar of peanut butter.
  • There are four types of peanuts grown in the USA — Runner, Virginia, Spanish and Valencia.
  • The average American consumes more than six pounds of peanuts and peanut butter products each year.
  • Peanuts contribute more than $4 billion to the USA economy each year.
  • There are enough peanuts in one acre to make 30,000 peanut butter sandwiches.
  • Two peanut farmers have been elected president of the USA – Thomas Jefferson and Jimmy Carter.
  • Grand Saline, TX holds the title for the world’s largest peanut butter and jelly sandwich weighing in at 1,342 pounds. Grand Saline outweighed Oklahoma City’s 900 pounds peanut butter and jelly sandwich in November 2010. Oklahoma City, OK had been the reigning champ since September 7, 2002.
  • Astronaut Allen B. Sheppard brought a peanut with him to the moon.
  • Tom Miller pushed a peanut to the top of Pike’s Peak (14,100 feet) using his nose in 4 days, 23 hours, 47 minutes and 3 seconds.
  • Adrian Finch of Australia holds the Guinness World Record for peanut throwing, launching the lovable legume 111 feet and 10 inches in 1999 to claim the record.
  • As early as 1500 B.C., the Incans of Peru used peanuts as sacrificial offerings and entombed them with their mummies to aid in the spirit life.
  • Arachibutyrophobia is the fear of getting peanut butter stuck to the roof of your mouth.

Sources:

National Day Calendar

Foodmentary

Mobile-Cuisine

Goo Goo

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