Thursday, August 10, 2006

The History of Toast

Do you ever wonder how the most basic food came to be? I do. For example: Why do we have toast? How was it first made? I investigated its beginning and this is what I found:

The ancient Egyptians, around 6000 years ago, were the first to develop the bread that we know today. They realized that if they let the bread sit out in Egypt's warm climate it would rise, and when baked would retain its risen shape. However, they also noticed that after a few days in the dry desert air, the bread would become hard and unpleasant to eat. Toasting bread in ancient times was a means of preserving it. The Romans spread the idea of toast throughout Europe, even into Britain, and the colonists brought toast to the Americas. The word 'toast,' in fact, comes from the Latin word tostum, meaning scorch or burn. Toast is essentially burnt bread, so the name makes sense.

The Toaster: At first bread was toasted by holding it over a fire or by lying it on a hot stone. Some earlier toasters were wire frames that sat over a fireplace. The invention of electricity led to the invention of the modern toaster. Before the toaster could be built, however, a certain nickel-chromium alloy called ni-chrome had to be developed so that the toast could be heated. This is why the toaster arrived on the scene after other appliances. The first toasters were produced in the early 1900s; the first commercially successful toaster appeared in 1909. The first automatic, or 'pop-up', toaster for the home was the Toastmaster, developed in 1926. There was even a knob that the user turned to determine the degree of darkness. The Toastmaster caused quite a stir, and along with the invention of sliced bread, it helped open the age of the automatic toaster. By the 1940s, most toasters were automatic.

History info taken from: http://www.bbc.co.uk/dna

2 Comments:

Anonymous Matt said...

Where's the recipe??? How do I make toast???

9:50 PM  
Anonymous Ben said...

So the ancient people of the Nile developed a process to insure that all their bread would become hard and "unpleasant to eat."

8:41 AM  

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