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Baking Powder WarsThe Cutthroat Food Fight that Revolutionized Cooking$
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Linda Civitello

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780252041082

Published to Illinois Scholarship Online: January 2018

DOI: 10.5406/illinois/9780252041082.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM ILLINOIS SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.illinois.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Illinois University Press, 2017. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in ISO for personal use (for details see http://www.universitypressscholarship.com/page/privacy-policy).date: 22 May 2018

The Burden of Bread

The Burden of Bread

Bread Before Baking Powder

Chapter:
(p.5) Chapter 1 The Burden of Bread
Source:
Baking Powder Wars
Author(s):

Linda Civitello

Publisher:
University of Illinois Press
DOI:10.5406/illinois/9780252041082.003.0002

This chapter shows how American exceptionalism in food set the groundwork for the baking powder revolution. In the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, bread was a staple food in the diet of Americans, who consumed one pound per person per day. Bread was also symbolic and connected to religion and morality. Housewives had to make their own yeast and bake bread, and were judged for it. Poor loaves were believed to cause dyspepsia, a catch-all term for any digestive problem. Pressures from Sylvester Graham and other authorities, plus variables in yeast, flour, gluten, climate, ovens, and measurements, created baking difficulties for women.

Keywords:   bread, morality, yeast, Graham, flour, gluten, dyspepsia

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