We’re talking about the world’s most popularly consumed nut. We’ll save the peanuts versus almonds debate for another day—right now, let’s take a closer look at a few fascinating facts you probably didn’t know about peanuts. Here’s what you’ll find most interesting about these delectable, versatile munchies.
You Can Turn Peanut Butter into Diamonds
Say what? Yes, you can make diamonds out of peanut butter. Geophysicists have discovered this possible conversion after a bit of experimentation. But how does the process work? Carbon is the most abundant element on Earth; all organic matter contains it. During research, one German scientist had a light-bulb realization: he could use peanut butter’s high carbon count to manufacture human-made diamonds.
His idea was to strip peanut butter of its carbon and subject the matter to extremely high temperatures and pressure. Astonishingly, the messy process worked. Needless to say, the quality of the resulting diamonds was fairly subpar, but the concept remains something special to amaze the brain.
Peanuts Were the First Nuts in Outer Space
In 1961, astronaut Alan Shepard became the first American to travel to outer space. A decade later, the national hero made a good old peanut the first astro-nut in the world. As the story told across the worldwide web goes, Alan was a regular at a California restaurant whose trademark was its bar peanuts. The owner, Jay Fiondella, convinced Commander Shephard to put one of those peanuts into his pocket as company for his next space flight to the moon. The astronaut obliged and later returned the astral legume to the proud owner. That’s certainly one unique claim to fame.
Several Peanut Farmers Have Been Elected US President
Another fascinating fact you didn’t know about peanuts: they’re notactually not nuts. By definition, nuts are fruits with a single edible seed. Rather, peanuts are legumes with multiple-seeded pods and members of the pea family. Farmers plant these legumes underground to grow and harvest the crops on acreages across the country. The growing cycle of the mighty peanut can take up to five months.
Interestingly enough, two former American presidents were peanut farmers: Thomas Jefferson and Jimmy Carter. That’s not the most prominent job on either of their résumés, but their agricultural roots are nutty to know about. Who knew so much history was packed into such a small morsel?