Tuesday, June 7, 2011

“True” History Tuesday – Marie Antoinette and Pork Rinds

Pork Rinds were invented by Marie Antoinette in 1775.  Marie was trying to find a light, yet fried, tasty snack.  Her husband Louis XVI loved pork.  He could never get enough bacon, pork chops, carnitas or sausage patties.  Marie knew that the snack she created must have something to do with pork.  Louis XVI was so busy with work and always writing all those roman numerals after his name.  She knew he’d be happy with a nice snack.
Marie Antoinette could sometimes be difficult.  She wanted things a certain way and would get mad at her staff if things didn’t go just right.  She went to the kitchen one day and said to the head chef, “I want to create a tasty pork snack for Louis, please create something now.”  The chef, Emeril Lagasse, tried all sorts of tasty options.  Nothing pleased Marie.  She got madder and madder.  Emeril Lagasse was getting flustered.  “BAM!” he would think to himself.  Finally, during one of Marie’s outbursts she said, “I ought to crack something over your skull and skin you alive!”  The first thought Emeril Lagasse had was, “shit, I hope she doesn’t do that.”  The next thought he had was, “wait…crack…skin…BAM.”  It was at that point that Emeril Lagasse, took cured pork skins and deep fried them.  Once fried, the skins formed pretty irregular curls.  Marie tried them and liked them immediately.  She exclaimed, “So light, so tasty and such pretty curls!!  I’ve created a snack which will be called Pork Rinds in most places and crackling in rural places of populations less than 10,000.”
Marie took a bucket of pork rinds to her room.  She was so enamored with the shape of the fried rinds that she put them in her hair.  She decided the irregular curls really made her hair pop in the right light.  When Louis XVI arrived back from kinging, Marie glided by him repeatedly.  Louis finally grabbed her by the arm and said, “Gee, your hair smells nice.”  Marie laughed and pulled a pork rind from atop her wig.  “Try this!” she exclaimed.  Although alarmed his wife had just pulled a snack from her hair, he gave it a try.  “This is delicious!”  Marie and Louis then ate their fill of the pork rinds stored in Marie’s hair.  A side note to this story:  Marie Antoinette never said, “Let them eat cake.”  She actually said, “Let them eat crackling.”  And that is the “true” history of pork rinds.

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