Peanut is one of the common food materials in the world. Peanut is mostly produced in the tropics and subtropics. Peanut contains good and important nutrients for our body. In 100 gram of Peanuts provide 570 calories and become the source of vitamin B, vitamin E, and some minerals such as manganese, magnesium, phosphor, and fibre. The essence of peanuts was first discovered 150 years ago since it was cultivated for the first time. Let’s see the history of peanuts cultivation to know how peanuts changed to be one of the favourite foods in the modern world.
Carver, The Father of PeanutThe first American who developed and processed peanuts was born from a slave family in the US. George Washington Carver was born in Missouri in January 1864, then became one of the reputable scientists and inventors in his time, and also a teacher in Tuskegee Institute. Carver who grew in the agricultural area in America, post-slavery is one in the million USDA researcher where he encouraged the cotton and corn farmer to start planting peanuts as an alternative plant due to the peanut nature that could restore the nitrogen into the ground (a process that is well known as nitrogen fixation) were cotton and corn had drained the nitrogen on the land in that area. He often got compliments for his discovery about the usability of peanuts including its benefit as a dye, plastic, and fuel. He also discovered some medical usability from that plant including a patent medicine for respiratory diseases such as tuberculosis and an antiseptic that is made from the seed and the shell. Thanks to Carver, Peanut is well-known as a plant with thousand usabilities. Peanuts itself has been one of the favourite foods in the world that could be served in every daily dish in Asia, Europe, and America. They also make it as a sauce, porridge, mixed seasoning, boiled food, roasted food, and fried food around the world. Peanuts are one of the most versatile foods in the world that are ready to consume since its pulled from the ground until processed foods form. Some of the famous peanut products are peanut butter, peanut oil, and peanut flour. However, Peanut is also able to be used for other purposes such as biodiesel that actually could solve the energy crisis issue in the future.
Peanut Butter came from Ancient Aztec A civilisation that was found more than 900 years ago where they realise if peanuts can be soaked, roasted, and pounded to be pasta for the sandwich. Peanut Butter is also the staples to season the bread and cookies and also the basis of many South East Asia dishes such as Satay, Gado-Gado, and Pad Thai.
Peanut Oil is often used for cooking since it has a mild taste, high smoke point, and also considered to be healthier than saturated oil. Some types of Peanuts Oil includes Aromatic Peanut Oil, Refined Peanut Oil, Peanuts Oil, and Peanuts Extract.
A number of restaurants use peanut oil to cook since the mild taste doesn’t change the original taste of the fried food which makes it the perfect oil to roast foods and improve the taste in salad sauce.
Peanut flour is perfect to create a crunchy texture on several menus. Remove the fat from roasted peanuts and you will have high protein flour which is perfect to thicken the soup, coat the chicken meat, beef or fish meat, seasoning, bread, cookies, or a cereal bar.
Lately, peanut oil is not only used for cooking but also used for biodiesel by slightly more processing which is ready to be the fuel of your car.
With high oil content up to 52%, peanut oil is the most effective leguminous plant to process as biodiesel. It produces approximately 120 to 150 gallons of biodiesel per hectare. It’s more efficient compared to soybean which only produces 46 gallons per hectare or 104 gallons per hectare from corn. (Source: University of Florida)
The Benefit of Peanut
Peanut is rich in vitamins, minerals, and peanut fibre where it provides 50% vitamin and 35% mineral that is important for growth and health.
Some people say if 30 minutes after consuming peanut could help you concentrate. It might be hard to believe but the fact if peanut is containing good protein and Vitamin B (B1, B6, B12) sources which could improve the circulation and red blood production. It makes this food best for brain consumption.
In every mouthful of peanut, our body can extract the quite amount of energy that helps us keep active in our busy routine. Besides containing more protein than any other beans, peanuts also provide the needs of Vitamin E, Niacin, Thiamin (Vitamin B1), copper, phosphor, magnesium iron, and any other important mineral such as folate acid, zinc, and selenium.
Peanut naturally is cholesterol-free and good for the heart. The research shows if the consumption of 2 or 3 portions of peanut every day can help to reduce the bad cholesterol (LDL) without reducing the good cholesterol (HDL).
We usually dont assume if peanut is a diet food, but the combination of unique fibre, unsaturated fat, and double unsaturated fat can help you feel full faster and last longer. Do you know if one portion (25g) of peanuts contains more fibre than a bowl of red rice?
Reducing the risk of disease-stricken
Consuming peanuts regularly will reduce the risk of a heart attack. After consuming 300g, the risk of cardiovascular disease decreases by about 21% because peanut contains unsaturated fat that is better for heart health than saturated fat.
Peanuts are the richest source of arginine in the plant world that helps to reduce the risk of being infected by contracting respiratory like tuberculosis. It contains phytochemical compounds and antioxidants that could reduce the risk of cancer and the last but not least, low glycemic content could help you and your children from diabetes.
Peanut in Indonesia
Peanuts were first brought to Indonesia by the Spanish explorer. The seeds were brought from Mexico thru Philippine and planted in the whole country from Sumatra to Java and Sulawesi. Peanuts became the farmer favourite since it is easy to plant and valued on the market.
Peanut sauce is the basis of a lot of iconic foods in Indonesia; Satay, Gado-Gado, Karedok, Pecel, Otak-otak, etc where all of those are delicious and it depends on simple peanuts. In between eating time, peanut that is roasted, fried, or boiled is a popular snack and it becomes part of social life whether at the time of seeing friends or family, watching soccer, or staying up late, peanut will always be there as a companion.
Traditionally, street vendors also sell peanuts that have been steamed in the shell and sometimes its added by a little salt to enhance the flavour. At the shop, they could buy roasted or sand-roasted peanuts with a slice of garlic or shallot.
Peanut in the World
Peanuts (Arachis Hypogaea) are plants that grow in the tropics and subtropics. This plant is predicted to come from Brazil and Peru in South America before being spread by European explorers to North America, Asia, and Africa.
Currently, there are more than 29 million metric tons of peanuts produced every year by farmers around the world. The 5 biggest peanut-producing countries in the world are China, India, the US, Nigeria, and Indonesia.
Amazingly, peanuts are not only delicious to consume but every part of this plant is having economic value as well. The shell could be utilised to feed the livestock, for fuel, or particleboard. Among the other benefits, its plant and leaves also produce high protein straw that is good for horses and other livestock.