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Man Who Invented Cheez Whiz & McDonald's French Fries Is Dead At 91

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matcom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-08-07 08:28 AM
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Man Who Invented Cheez Whiz & McDonald's French Fries Is Dead At 91

MADISON, Wis. - Edwin Traisman, a food scientist who created the process for freezing McDonald's french fries and helped develop Cheez Whiz, has died at age 91.

Traisman died Tuesday at the University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics following a heart attack, said his granddaughter Jenna Greene, of Chevy Chase, Md.

Born in Chicago on Nov. 25, 1915, to Latvian immigrants, Traisman was the only of six siblings to graduate from high school. He earned a bachelor's degree in chemistry from the University of Illinois in 1937.

Traisman worked for Kraft Foods on the teams that created Cheez Whiz and individually packaged cheese slices in the 1950s. He became a division director of food research with responsibility for cheese and related projects.

Then Traisman wandered into a McDonald's restaurant near Chicago to ask about opening a franchise, said his wife of 44 years, Dorothy. He approached a man who was sweeping and asked for the manager. The man said the manager wasn't in, but he might be able to help.

"It turned out it was Mr. Ray Kroc himself," Dorothy Traisman said.

The two became friends, and Traisman opened the first McDonald's franchise in the Madison area in 1957. Within 14 years, he owned five restaurants.

One problem McDonald's Corp. had was producing french fries when Idaho potatoes were not in season, Greene said. Freezing uncooked potatoes ruined their texture. Traisman eventually developed and patented a process for partially cooking the fries and then freezing them.

"Then they could stay fresh and crispy," Greene said. "I think the secret was in how long you cook them before you freeze them."
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Orsino Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-08-07 09:48 AM
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1. I wonder if a coroner has ever listed a cause of death... "accumulated karma"?
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