Most people don’t know that back in 1912, Hellmann’s mayonnaise was manufactured in England. In fact, the Titanic was carrying 12,000 jars of the condiment scheduled for delivery in Vera Cruz, Mexico, which was to be the next port of call for the great ship after its stop in New York.
This would have been the largest single shipment of mayonnaise ever delivered to Mexico…. But as we know….the great ship did not make it to New York….The ship hit an iceberg and sank …. and the cargo was forever lost….
The people of Mexico, who were crazy about mayonnaise, and were eagerly awaiting its delivery …. were disconsolate at the loss….
Their anguish was so great, that they declared a National Day of Mourning which they still observe to this day…. The National Day of Mourning occurs each year on May 5th…. and is known….of course….as Sinko de Mayo….
- The Mexican community celebrates more than 365 festivals each year. Cinco de Mayo is just one of them.
- Although Cinco de Mayo is a big celebration in Puebla, where the battle was fought, Cinco de Mayo is much more popular in America.
- The festival was ‘invented’ in America by a group of students back in 1967. Each year since then Cinco de Mayo gets bigger thanks to people of Mexican descent – and those who just like a good margarita!
- Did you know Mexico is the largest Spanish-speaking country in the world.
- Around 28.3 million of USA residents were of Mexican origin in 2006. These residents constituted 9% of the nation’s total population, and 64% of the Hispanic population.
- Approximately 630,000 of Mexican-Americans are USA military veterans.
- The Maya in Central Mexico were the first people known to harvest and use the peanut.
- Pineapple and papayas grew wild in Mexico, and were introduced to the rest of the world by Spanish explorers.
- Around the 1860s, three American travellers began exporting resin from the Zapote Blanco tree in Mexico after they noticed that it hardened when exposed to air. The men found a way to turn it into a waxy substance, added flavours and sweeteners, and sold it in small balls for a penny apiece, calling it Adam’s Chewing Gum from New York. Today, Americans chew seven times more gum than the rest of the world.
- Guadalajara, Mexico’s second largest city, is where the Mexican Hat Dance, sombreros and mariachi music are believed to have originated.
- The vanilla bean comes from an orchid plant discovered by Mexican Indians who used it to add flavor to their cocoa and corn drinks. The world’s largest crop of vanilla beans still comes from Mexico.