How to Avoid Mental Dullness, circa 1897

April 28, 2017


I have a great fondness for these early ads for Grape Nuts, which was originally marketed to men with the promise that it would help them “win money and position.”  That one little sentence tells us so much about the time.

The cereal, which contains neither grapes nor nuts, was developed in 1897 by  C.W. Post, who was a patient (and then a competitor), of Dr. John Harvey Kellogg.  It was one of the first commercial products marketed as health food.

Shelf stable, the cereal later became part of the jungle rations issued to soldiers during WW II.  It went on, of course, to be used in many other ways – including as part of a classic New England ice cream treat.

Here’s a recipe for Grape Nut bread I found in one of my vintage cookbooks from 1946. 

Should you want to make your own, here’s a recipe from Serious Eats: homemade Grape Nuts.

And just because, I can’t wait to try this:

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1 Comment

  • Sarah Calvani says:

    I LOVE Grapenuts. Are they still around? The ultimate food group was grapenuts and bananas with a little milk. This got me out the door during high sch in the 60’s going to an all girls school in uniform when I wanted to be smoking something exotic in the Haight Ashbury. And re the grapefruit ,,,,,this recipe was served to me by my ancient next door neighbors in the 80,s . I was gobsmacked to have warm grapefruit for a dinner appetizer! You live and learn. Keep it coming.