It’s here, it’s here! The most wonderful holiday of the year is almost here again! You can have your Halloweens, Thanksgivings and Christmases… Saturday, January 6 is National Bean Day.
That’s right, the world’s most wonderful, delicious and healthy food has a day dedicated all to itself. Last year, we celebrated by giving you some fun bean facts. We had so much fun learning last time we thought why not do it again!
Before you celebrate this year’s bean day with a big pot of soup, chili or whatever your favorite bean dish may be, enjoy a few more facts about everybody’s favorite legume!
1. The Bean family name
Bean: it’s a pretty popular last name, and we aren’t just talking about the goofy Mr. Bean! The name, however, does have its origins across the pond in the United Kingdom. Beans could even be found in Germany (Biehn) and France (La fève). However, as America began to grow and people came from far and wide seeking opportunities in the land of the free, the Bean family name made its way stateside.
In fact, according to ancestery.com, there are 1,724,019 historical documents of persons and families with a Bean in their lineage. Sufficient to say, beans (the people and the food) aren’t going anywhere anytime soon!
2. The Alabama Butterbean Festival LOVES baked beans
A true lover of beans like us? This October, head down to Pinson, Alabama to take part in the Alabama Butterbean Festival! This free two-day bean extravaganza began in 2006 and is a local favorite event. Visitors can get their fill of delicious butterbean food and Mr. & Mrs. Butterbean are even crowned!
But the real draw of the festival is the baked beans! The Alabama Butterbean Festival takes baked beans to a whole new level. In 2010, the festival set a Guinness World Record for the largest pot of baked beans. During that year’s festival, the organizers whipped up a, get this, 1,010.65 GALLON batch of baked beans! Now that’s a lot of beans.
3. How Navy Beans got their name
Navy Beans are a delicious member of the white bean family, right alongside Great Northern Beans. But, Navy Beans sounds like such a curious name. Have you ever wondered where it came from? Turns out the name comes from exactly where you would expect it to: the United States Navy!
These beans were originally grown in Peru and known as “common beans.” However, during the early 20th century, these beans became commonly stocked in United States Navy vessels because of their high protein, versatility in cooking and other nutritional values. Often being one of the last food items left on the shelves before ships were restocked, they soon adopted the name “Navy Beans” because of it. The name stuck and Navy Beans have been fueling our brave men and women ever since.
4. For ancient Romans, beans were no joke
If you think Randall Beans has great love and respect for beans, you better believe we don’t have anything on the ancient Romans. In those times, beans and legumes were held in high esteem as a food of luxury and high-class. In fact, they were so highly regarded that 4 of the most powerful politicians and leaders in Rome’s history had family names that took from beans and legumes.
Gnaeus Cornelius Lentulus (derived from lentil) served on the Roman consul in 146 BC. Gaius Calpurnius Piso (derived from pea) was a Roman praetor in 211 BC. Marcus Tullius Cicero (derived from chickpea) was a politician and lawyer who served on the consul in 63 BC. And finally, Quintus Fabius Maximus Verrucosus (derived from fava) was a regarded general and statesman who lived from 280 to 203 BC.
Happy National Bean Day Randall fans! We hope you had some fun with these bean facts and celebrate this year by making a pot of chili, a great big casserole or even just tossing some beans on your salad. No dinner plans? Check out our recipe page for some delicious bean recipes.