Party time! April 20 is not only the supreme herb-iday, but also the date of Head Magazine’s online comeback in 2020. To make our third anniversary celebration extra special, we’re serving foods that have national/international holidays on April 20, or whose holidays fall on April 20 this year. Join our Head-iversary party wherever you are by enjoying one (or more) of our top 10 marijuana strains as you indulge in the goodies below and send us good vibes on 420.
Technically, pizza is a pie, not a cake. Nevertheless, when you have a thick stack of pizzas ready to be sliced and devoured in unison, each slice resembles a seven-layer cake far more than a pie. That said, you do have the option of preparing a confectionary cake made to look like a pizza to celebrate this holiday too – but that’s hardly as original.
This amply satiating main course was invented in 2014 by the Canada-based pizza chain Boston Pizza. It was part of that restaurant’s Pizza Game Changers promotion, cooked to demonstrate how creative pizza can be. To make your own pizza cake, just stack two to four pizzas (any size will do) and slice them as you would a large cake. Preparing your own pizza pies would be the most fun way to “bake” (pun intended) your cake. However, if you’d rather have pizzas delivered, make sure to tell the restaurant not to pre-slice the pie.
International Pizza Cake Day falls on the third Thursday in April, which happens to be April 20 this year. If you miss out, you won’t be able to sync up this holiday and 420 again until 2034!
The first documented frying of potatoes for consumption took place in France in 1775 (hence, “French fries”). It wasn’t until the 1900s that this side dish became commercialized in the United States though, and in 1955, a Dairy Queen employee invented chili cheese fries. However, the eatery that requested and inaugurated National Cheddar Fries Day (April 20) was Snuffer’s Restaurant and Bar in Dallas, Texas.
Cheez Whiz launched cheddar fries as a gastronomical phenomenon throughout the nation in the 1950s after that spread became popular in American households. One of the dish’s appealing factors is how easy it is to prepare, requiring you only to melt cheese on top of fries. You can choose from among more than 1,800 types of cheese (cheddar, mozzarella and Swiss are the most popular), and you can upgrade it with any toppings you like.
Lima Bean Side Dishes
Lest you mistreat this underappreciated legume, April 20 is National Lima Bean Respect Day. These were first cultivated in Peru around 6000 B.C., and were discovered in Lima by European explorers, who named them for that city. (They’re also known as butter beans though.) Given their long shelf life, lima beans became the ideal food item on long ocean voyages. This led to their arrival in North America sometime in the 19th century.
Lima beans are one of the healthier foods on our Head-iversary snack bar. They’re an excellent protein source for vegans, diabetics and people with high cholesterol because they’re high in fiber. And the vitamins and minerals in them make them a heart-healthy option, too. But don’t be quick to dismiss these beans as something that might seem bland – especially alongside the other stuff on the snack bar. Here are some savory ways to respect the bean on 420:
- Summer lima bean and roasted corn salad (Tasty as Fit recipe).
- Lima bean dip (Food Network recipe).
- Ham and lima bean soup (The Bitten Word recipe).
- Chicken, corn and lima bean stew (Martha Stewart recipe).
- Lemony lima beans with parmesan (Martha Stewart recipe).
Pineapple Upside-Down Cake
The first commercially gown pineapple crop was established in Hawaii in 1886, and the fruit was first sold profitably in the United States as a Dole’s Hawaiian Pineapple Company canned good in 1903. In 1925, the Hawaiian Pineapple Company sponsored a contest to find the best pineapple recipes, and the winning, published upside-down cake recipes made the dessert’s popularity skyrocket across the nation. To prepare your own on National Pineapple Upside-Down Cake Day (April 20), click here for the traditional recipe or here for the vegan recipe, both from Allrecipies.
Why do these have to be upside-down though? This dates back hundreds of years, when cast-iron skillets were used to cook fruit cakes over open flames. The fruit would line the bottom of the skillet so that it could be nearest to the heat, and cake batter would be poured on top of it. The mixture would fuse well while still maintaining distinction between the main ingredients, and then the skillet would be turned over to retrieve and serve the cake.
If you’re not a connoisseur of Mongolian cuisine, International Milk Tea Dumpling Day (April 20) is your chance to expand your palette. The Mongolian name of this snack, Banshtai Tsai, is translated as “tea with dumplings and dried meat.” (That sounds more like a soup or stew than tea, but “tea” it is!) To prepare your own, click here for the recipe from Mongol Food. If you prefer vegan Banshtai Tsai, click here to watch an East Meets Kitchen cooking tutorial.
Mongolia’s leading English-language news outlet, the UB Post, announced in 2019 that the dish had earned a special status. The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) World Network of Biosphere Reserves selected the Banshtai Tsai recipe as one of its sustainable food recipes. The tea is described in that article as a “nutrient-rich, delicious and filling comfort food.” It goes on to state that many believe the concoction has medicinal properties, even curing the flu virus. Whether that’s true or not, it officially makes this dish the healthiest one on our snack bar.
Although World Nutella® Day is Feb. 5, April 20 is when the first jar of Nutella left the Ferrero factory in Alba, Italy, in 1964. According to Epicurean Traveler, the spread was an immediate success in Italy and Germany, and then in France the following year. Today, it is now the French who consume the most Nutella, eating 25% of its worldwide production. However, Italy Heritage estimates that Italians consume at least 60 million jars of Nutella every year. So, its country of origin still loves it. This 420, we’re honored to slather freshly baked bread (or anything at all, really) with this chocolate-hazelnut miracle sauce.
Happy Third Anniversary, “Head”!
Here’s to many years to come for “Head” in the 2020s and beyond. Toke up, everyone!
Kathleen Hearons is a writer, editor, linguist and voice over actor from Los Angeles. She specializes in creative writing and research-intensive analysis and reporting.
Sources and Recommended Reading:
“420 Day.” Holidays Calendar. https://www.holidayscalendar.com/event/420-day/.
“2023 Daily Holidays that fall on April 20.” Holidays-and-Observances.com. http://www.holidays-and-observances.com/april-20.html.
Anne. “Pineapple Upside-Down Cake.” Allrecipies. https://www.allrecipes.com/recipe/17691/pineapple-upside-down-cake-vii/.
“April 20: Facts & Historical Events On This Day.” The Fact Site. https://www.thefactsite.com/day/april-20/.
“Banshtai Tsai.” Mongol Food. https://www.mongolfood.info/en/recipes/banshtai-tsai.html.
“Chicken, Corn, and Lima-Bean Stew.” Martha Stewart. https://www.marthastewart.com/341258/chicken-corn-and-lima-bean-stew.
“Food & Drink Days of the Year.” Now Book It. https://nowbookit.com/food-drink-days-of-the-year/.
Gordan, Lucy. “Nutella: Italy’s Worldwide Success.” Epicurean Traveler. https://epicurean-traveler.com/nutella-italys-worldwide-success/#:~:text=The%20first%20glass%20jar%20with,today%2025%25%20of%20world%20production.
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“International Milk Tea Dumpling Day.” National Food Holiday Tour, WordPress. https://nationalfoodholidaytour.wordpress.com/2021/04/20/international-milk-tea-dumpling-day/.
“International Pizza Cake Day – April 20, 2023.” National Today. https://nationaltoday.com/international-pizza-cake-day/.
Kyeemah. “Vegan Pineapple Upside-Down Cake.” Allrecipies. https://www.allrecipes.com/recipe/285725/vegan-pineapple-upside-down-cake/.
“Lemony Lima Beans with Parmesan.” Martha Stewart. https://www.marthastewart.com/315512/lemony-lima-beans-with-parmesan.
“Lima Bean Dip.” Food Network. https://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/food-network-kitchen/lima-bean-dip-recipe-1973811.
“National Cheddar Fries Day – April 20, 2023.” National Today. https://nationaltoday.com/national-cheddar-fries-day/.
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“National Pineapple Upside-Down Cake Day – April 20, 2023.” National Today. https://nationaltoday.com/national-pineapple-upside-cake-day/.
Ng, Christina. “Mongolian Milk Tea Dumplings (Vegan): Banshtai Tsai.” East Meets Kitchen, YouTube. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nKU9BNcrQOw.
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Spata, Christopher. “Ever wonder where all those national food holidays come from? The answer is complicated.” Tampa Bay Times. https://www.tampabay.com/things-to-do/food/cooking/ever-wonder-where-all-those-national-food-holidays-come-from-the-answer-is/2289564/.
“Summer Lima Bean & Roasted Corn Salad.” Tasty as Fit. https://tastyasfit.com/blogs/tasty-as-fit-recipes/summer-lima-bean-roasted-corn-salad.
“UNESCO to promote Mongolian comfort food.” The UB Post. https://www.pressreader.com/mongolia/the-ub-post/20190520/281582357089419.
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