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Bread: A Slice Of History Paperback – Illustrated, 1 Oct 2008

5.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Product details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: The History Press (1 Oct. 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0752447483
  • ISBN-13: 978-0752447483
  • Product Dimensions: 11.4 x 1.8 x 20.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 299,141 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

This is a novel little book and makes an interesting read. It is complete with lots of illustrations and photographs and is undoubtedly the definitive account of the history of a commodity so common we take it for granted in the western world. --Orange Standard, 9th Jan '10

About the Author

Joan P. Alcock is an archeologist and historian and an Honorary Fellow of London South Bank University and a Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries of London. She is the author of "Life in Roman Britain" (1996) and "Food in Roman Britain" (2001), among other works.


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Bread is easy right? You just whack together a bit of flour, water, sugar yeast and salt. Mix it all up let it sit for a bit then heat is using your choice of oven. Maybe you've popped an egg in for richness or you've added olive oil for knocking up a ciabatta. Simple, but how much do you know about the flour from which your bread is produced or how and where it may have been ground and what's actually in it?

What this book won't give you is tips on making your bread better or tasty new recipes to try out. What is does deliver is a fascinating journey through history describing the evolution of the humble loaf and the wider ranging social commentary around it. The book shows how changes in the way we got our daily bread shaped society and changed the industry. The book links up the social aspect of bread with the points in history where technological advances dramatically improved the way that bread could be produced and mass produced. It follows the rise and fall of bread from a staple part of the layman's diet to an "inferior commodity" food seen as poor persons fare.

Whilst I don't think this is a book for everyone, the authors have done a good job of taking what could have potentially been very dry material and done a great job of presenting it in a clear and interesting way. It reads like a popular science book but also, I think, retains the credible air of an academic text.
The summary sound bite "you'll never look at bread in the same way again"

For those thinking of taking it on holiday the book measures approx 20x12.5x2cm and weighs 300 grams
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