The Greatest Thing Since Sliced Bread

Isn't it weird to think that bread has not always been sliced in a neatly packaged loaf? Well it hasn't! Bread has been around for 1,000's of years but our modern system of mass production and fast paced lives has changed up the way bread is sold and made. When you go into the grocery store there are so many choices of loafs and bagels and biscuits. All of which are nicely cut for you already. A big part of why bread began to be pre-sliced was the invention of the toaster. How nice it was to have uniform slices, easy to pop into your toaster and have a quick breakfast. When I was young I loved our toaster. It was extra large and had four slots, not just the normal two. It was always a treat to get to make a bunch of toast for our family of eight and pop down the lever only to get filled with excitement to watch them pop up. Toast is such a versatile food and a breakfast favorite for many. Let's take a look at its history.

In the ancient days leavened bread was a lighter bread that was considered much nicer than flat breads. There was just one problem: left out in the desert heat for long periods of time, it would go hard and became difficult to eat. The solution? Toast. It's likely that toast originated as a way to preserve bread rather than as a tasty breakfast item smothered in butter and jam. By scorching slices of bread, they lasted longer as a palatable food. So now you can picture those travelers on their camels deep in the dessert, desiring something yummy to eat and pulling out their toast.

The practice of toasting bread became popular in the Roman Empire. The word "toast" actually comes from the Latin "tostum," which means "to burn or scorch."

In days of old most likely they would've toasted bread on a hot rock or over a fire. Our quick and convenient modern methods came around more recently. The first electric toaster was invented in 1893 by Scotsman Alan MacMasters, but it wasn't very popular. The iron wiring would often melt, creating a fire hazard. That was if people could use the toaster at all, as electricity wasn't widespread at this time. The "modern" timed pop-up toaster was created in 1919. And now there are even more options of making your bread crispy with toaster ovens, broiling them in the oven and such.

So there you have a brief history of the great food of toast. It has quite the background. One thing that's so great with toast is it can be paired with so many different delicious things. Toppings on toast can be endless; eggs, butter, honey, jam, Nutella, peanut butter, and who knows what other toppings you could try. But have you ever tried painted toast? This is my favorite way to make toast! As a little girl I remember my mom lining up the cups of milk to drop dye into and setting a little paintbrush in each one. It is a delightful way to add some fun and uniqueness to your breakfast table!

So how does one "paint" toast. You simply put a bit of milk in the bottom of some cups, add a few drops of food coloring and paint your piece of toast with the colors. Then you pop your masterpiece into the awesome invention of the toaster and let it cook. When it comes out you can just enjoy it with a bit of butter or honey to still see your painting. Or take a peak and then load on your favorite jam.

So what's the greatest thing since sliced bread? Painted toast!! Go enjoy making some for your breakfast today! What are some of your favorite breakfast foods? Share in the comments below, I'd love to hear!

    Carolyn Spencer
    Monthly Newsletter Contributor since 2015
    Email the author!

Join the Cook'n Club and get newsletter articles like this each week!

blog comments powered by Disqus