Sunday, November 6, 2011

November is...National Bread Month!

Boy that was some party we had here last month. It took me all week to recuperate! However, no longer can I ignore the fact that November has its share of monthly celebrations too. Take National Bread Month for example. Can you think of a better month to celebrate bread? Me either. As a matter of fact, as many of you know, I'm not much of a baker. But, I was thinking. Since I have already said a number of times that I was going to try my hand at baking bread, perhaps, (and that's a huge maybe:) November 2011 may just be that time. We'll see:)

A Grain of Wheat...

Tummy Tingles

...from Tummy Tingles! Remember that cutie? Yep, it's the same book I shared for Gingerbread Day way back in June. How many of you tried that Fairy Gingerbread Recipe? (that should be a direct link to the image of the recipe) No one. Uh oh, it's that time of year you know. As a matter of fact, there are those who believe Gingerbread Day to be the day following Thanksgiving. I'm still trying to confirm that...

Tummy Tingles ©1937 is not the only wheat book published by Ms. Beardsley, she also authored a booklet tiled From Wheat to Flour the same year. I found a copy of her other booklet available online for reading at the Digital Book Index. Below is a "slice" of From Wheat to Flour.
It seems strange that anything as small as a grain of wheat could alter the course of history, yet nothing that man ever discovered has been of more importance to him than this tiny bit of food- stuff. Who first introduced wheat into the human diet will never be known, for he lived thousands of years before recorded history.
Probably the first people who used wheat as a food simply chewed the grain, making what farm children today call wheat gum. Of course, we know now that the kernel of the wheat berry, freed of its hard outer covering, or bran, can be ground to a fine white flour and from it, a delicious food, bread, can be made, but man was a long time learning this.

We do not know just how bread first came to be made. About twenty thousand years ago, in the Stone Age, people were making a coarse flour by crushing wheat on a slightly hollowed rock with a small stone held in the hand. Moistened with water, patted into little cakes, and baked in the sun, or on a heated stone, this coarse meal gave Early Man a bread stuff which he found satisfying and strengthening. He found, too, that wheat could be kept for a long time without spoiling. By gathering it when it ripened in summer, he could store it in skins, hollow trees, or other dry places and eat it when food was scarce. 

This single fact caused man's history to take a new and important turn. Since he was no longer obliged to wander from one region to another in search of food when the seasons changed, Early Man stayed the year around near the wild wheat fields. In time, he learned that the wheat plant, bearing many seeds, grew from one seed. Early Man was not a quick thinker, but once he realized that many seeds could be gained by putting one in the ground, farming or agriculture, as we sometimes call it began...online version con't

There once was a time when a homemaker's reputation depended, in good measure, on her ability to produce a good loaf of bread. Here's a rhyming 1903 recipe designed to help the new housewife meet with success by way of...you guessed it, Nebraska!
Bread Recipe Poem
"When a well-bred girl expects to wed, 'tis well to remember that men like bread. We're going to show the steps to take, so she may learn good bread to bake. First, mix a lukewarm quart, my daughter, one-half o milk and one-half of water; to this please add two cakes of yeast, or the liquid kind if preferred in the least.

"Next stir in a teaspoonful of nice clear salt, if this bread isn't good, it won't be our fault. Now add the sugar, tablespoons three; mix well together, for dissolved they must be. Pour the whole mixture into an earthen bowl, a pan's just as good, if it hasn't a hole. It's the cook and the flour, not the bowl or the pan, that 'makes the bread that makes the man.'

"Now let the mixture stand a minute or two, you've other things of great importance to do. First sift the flour use, the finest in the land. Three quarts is the measure, 'Gold Medal' the brand. Next stir the flour into the mixture that's stood, waiting to play its part, to make the bread good. Mix it up thoroughly, but not too thick; some flours make bread that's more like a brick.

"Now grease well a bowl and put the dough in, don't fill the bowl full, that would be a sin' for the dough is all right and it's going to rise, till you will declare that it's twice its size. Brush the dough with melted butter, as the recipes say; cover with a bread towel, set in a warm place to stay two hours or more, to rise until light, when you see it grow, you'll know it's all right.

"As soon as it's light place again on a board; knead it well this time. Here is knowledge to hoard. Now back in the bowl once more it must go, and set again to rise for an hour or so. Form the dough gently into loaves when light, and place it in bread pans greased just right. Shape each loaf you make to half fill the pan, this bread will be good enough for any young man.

"Next let it rise to the level of pans--no more, have temperature right, don't set near a door. We must be careful about draughts; it isn't made to freeze, keep the room good and warm--say seventy-two degrees. Now put in the oven--it's ready to bake--keep uniform fire, great results are at stake. One hour more of waiting and you'll be repaid, by bread that is worthy 'a well bred maid."

A Few Crumbs

The second week of November kicks of National Split Pea Soup Week.

Tomorrow, November 6, is National Nachos Day or I Love Nachos Day. It isn't, however, International Day of the Nacho, that was back in October on the 21st!


The world's largest peanut butter and jelly sandwich measured 40 feet long. It contained 150 pounds of peanut butter and 50 pounds of jelly. It was created November 6, 1993 in Peanut, Pennsylvania. Peanut Butter Fun Facts from Skippy:)
Hoo...Hoo...who doesn't luv Poppin' Fresh! He made his TV debut on November 7, 1965 and I blogged about it, right here.

Are you making a cake for Election Day? If you do, be sure and check out this Election Day Cake. Not only is it filled with goodies, it's got a whole lot of history for icing!!!

Need something to wash down that cake? GREAT! It's also National Cappuccino Day on November 8th!!!

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Did everyone see the "Newest Yoplait Smoothie Flavor" over at One Crazy Cookie? Tiffanee is also having a Yoplait Giveaway! (expires Nov. 10, 2011)