Male Bias in the History of Bread: Logo for Fleischmann’s Yeast

Fleischmann's Yeast Advertisement circa 1912 When The American yeast company, Fleischmann's, had a pictorial logo in the first decades of the twentieth-century, they made it male. From the Neolithic and up until very recently, women were responsible for most of the process of producing bread. With the limited exception of baking bread in commercial operations … Continue reading Male Bias in the History of Bread: Logo for Fleischmann’s Yeast

Recipes for Bread History Seminar #14, Domestication of the Bread Grains

An Imagined Early Bread Natufian & Pre Pottery Neolithic The first breads were made by Natufian hunter gatherers around 14,000 years ago. Naatufians are the people in southwest Asia that we know for sure first utilized bread grains for bread. We know this because we have proof in the form of archeological remains. Natufians, and … Continue reading Recipes for Bread History Seminar #14, Domestication of the Bread Grains

Maslin Bread for August 20, 2020 Seminar

Tony Shahan, historian of milling, and director of the Newlin Grist Mill, suggests we make a maslin bread -- a bread of mixed wheat and rye OR a bread that somehow reflects the trade in export flour between North American and the United Kingdom in the later decades of the 18th century. The first cookbook … Continue reading Maslin Bread for August 20, 2020 Seminar

Thursday Bread History Seminar/Workshop #10 July 16, 2020, 9am Pacific: Sourdough

We are back again this Thursday with an exciting Seminar/Workahop. As always, you need to register with EventBrite for this Zoom meeting. In terms of time zones, this Seminar/Workshop works for people from the California and South American Pacificas Coast through to India, where the Seminar starts at 9:30 pm in Bangalore. For easy reference, … Continue reading Thursday Bread History Seminar/Workshop #10 July 16, 2020, 9am Pacific: Sourdough

Zadock Steele, starving, eats too much bread.

Zadock Steele  was captured by Mohawk Indians allied with the British in a raid in Vermont in 1780. It was called the Royalton raid. Zadock was transferred to British custody and eventually escapes. Starving, he and a companion are taken in by a "poor widow".  In this short scene he  describes over eating what she … Continue reading Zadock Steele, starving, eats too much bread.

Making Cake from Bread Dough circa 1880

I've been reading the bread section from The Thrift Book: A Cyclopaedia of Cottage Management, a British book published in the 1880s. It is interesting for being written during a transitional period in home baking when bakers were shifting to tinned breads. The recipe for a cake couldn't be more different from modern bread and cake recipes … Continue reading Making Cake from Bread Dough circa 1880

Spit Roast Bread — The Kneaded Loaf of 1823

Today, as part of my work on the glossary section of the history of bread I’m writing for UC Press, I have been researching the British Northern dialect term knodden cake, and its Standard English parallel, kneaded cake. I’m still working on the words and can today only say that I think they were enriched … Continue reading Spit Roast Bread — The Kneaded Loaf of 1823

Sir Hugh Plat’s Manuscript: An English Bread circa 1560

There is one of the earliest bread recipes written in English and this is its first publication.

The recipe is found in a manuscript book mostly written by Sir Hugh Plat but as Malcom Thick points out in his book, Sir Hugh Plat: The Search for Useful Knowledge in Early Modern London, many of the food recipes, including this one, were written by an unknown author with the initials TT. Malcolm Thick believes that this recipe probably dates to the 1550s or 1560s. I am preparing these early manuscript bread recipes for publication. If you would like to be notified when this book will be available for publication please sign up for my mailing list.

Bread in Italy circa 1894

I was searching Google Books for information on military bread ovens in the 19th century, a process my girlfriend refers to as "wooden cowing," and came across this sketch regarding bread in Italy circa 1894. It was written by Olive May Eager, a minor American writer who lived in Italy and seems to have supported … Continue reading Bread in Italy circa 1894