In Case You Were Curious…About Corn Chips!
January 29, 2018
The Bottom Line: Learn more about chips!
The Full Story:
- Ever wondered how this fantastic crunchy corn chip came about? You can thank Charles E. Doolin, who had a jones for corn and desire to sell it as a snack. In the Depression-era 1930’s, Doolin owned a confectionery in San Antonio. Sick of tortillas, he was looking for something different – and he found a Mexican man frying corn chips out of masa, and selling it in little bags known as fritos, which translates to “little fried things.”
- Doolin purchased the patent – and the man’s 14 customers – and began work on perfecting a recipe. He did it in his own kitchen with his mother perfecting the recipe. Once the taste was set, it was off to find the perfect corn. Family members joked that Doolin’s life was “one big hidden kitchen” and noted that he had kitchens and beakers at home, his office, and his factory.
- Later, he adopted Henry Ford’s idea of an assembly line and conveyor belt to manufacture Fritos – and in 1955, Doolin opened a Casa de Frito restaurant in Disneyland and then another in Dallas. Doolin’s idea for the Frito was to be served as a side dish with soup and salad, used to complement a meal. By the way? His various experiments also led to the Cheeto. In an ironic twist, Doolin rarely ate Fritos.
- By the time of Doolin’s death in 1959, he had partnered with Herman Lay to create Frito-Lay...and the rest, as they say, is history!
Source: NPR Books