Google Doodle celebrates the 293rd birthday of Eva Ekeblad, who made alcohol from potatoes

Had it not been for Eva Ekeblad, the world would not have ever had a sip of vodka and a bite of, oh so, heavenly fries. Honouring this 18th century Renaissance countess on her 293rd birth anniversary, Google has come up with a doodle highlighting her contribution to the food industry.

Born on 10 July, 1724, Eva Ekebald, was an agronomist whose contribution came at a time when potatoes, believe it or not, was considered fit for animals and not for humans, in Sweden. Also, during that time, there was a growing shortage of cereals, oats and alcohol as well.

Ekebald had once heard that potatoes could be dried and crushed, through which potato starch and flour could be made, a practice which unlike Sweden was quite popular in Germany. She grew potatoes in her garden and conducted experiments on potatoes. When she submitted her findings to the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences in Sweden at the age of 24, she became the first woman to be admitted to the college which was known for its men-only status.

Thanks to her discovery, Sweden got a taste of potatoes. Before her discovery, it was never a part of Sweden's staple diet. Potatoes became popular in the 19th century when they were used in British cooking.

Updated Date: Jul 10, 2017 07:22 AM