Top 4 Tasty Bread Treats

BreadTreats

With this year’s Real Breadmaker Week just behind us, maybe it’s time you took another look at the humble loaf. Far from being just the basis for a quick and easy snack, bread is extremely versatile and can be used in many exciting sweet and savoury treats. Here we take a look at the origins of the modern day loaf and show you some different ways in which you can use it in everyday recipes.

The history of bread

Bread has been a staple part of our diet for centuries, with evidence of it being baked by the ancient Egyptians, Greeks and Romans. There was even a form of bread found during the Stone Ages. In the Middle Ages, being a baker had a significant status within a town and there were rules about who could become one.

The first types of bread used a range of grains and cereals to create different and edible foods. As we’ve evolved and developed our skills and technology, we’ve learned to make bread into a more palatable form that can be enjoyed in many ways. The process became much quicker during the Industrial Revolution, with the development of new machinery. The Chorleywood Bread Process was introduced in 1961 and this is how the majority of UK bread is produced today. The process makes it possible to manufacture bread using wheat with a lower protein. This is beneficial in the UK as the wheat here doesn’t usually have high levels of protein.

Today bread is enjoyed all over the world and can be made using a variety of different ingredients and types of grain. As well as the traditional white loaf, you could choose from rye or sourdough bread, as well as loaves flavoured with cheeses, spices and fruits. There really is no end to the versatility of bread, which is why it’s so popular. Even leftover bread can be used to make plenty of other dishes.

This is our pick of the best:

Bread and Butter Pudding

BreadandButterPud

This is a classic British pudding that was developed from the traditional Bread Pudding recipe. The first evidence of this dish can be found in the 17th century and it began life as a more luxury form of Bread Pudding. As the middle classes became richer, they were able to afford more staple products in their diet, including eggs and milk. This enabled them to create a custard to pour over the bread, which developed into a Bread and Butter Pudding.

Today the dish is still seen as a good way of using up a range of types of leftover bread. It is created by placing layers of buttered bread in a dish along with raisins or other dried fruits. A custard is made using a mixture of milk, sugar and eggs, which can be flavoured with spices like nutmeg, vanilla and cinnamon. The custard mixture is poured over the bread and then baked.

Summer Pudding

SummerPudding

This is another British sweet that has made a come back in the past few years thanks to its popularity with celebrity chefs. The original forms of the pudding were found during the 19th century and it was originally made using raspberries and redcurrants.

To make a Summer Pudding you layer slices of white bread within a round bowl and then cover with fruit juice and summer fruits, such as raspberries, blackcurrants, strawberries and blackberries. It’s then left overnight so that all the juices soak into the bread. When it’s ready to serve, the pudding is turned upside down on a plate.

Strata

Strata

Strata is an American inspired dish that is often served for brunch and has similarities with the frittata or quiche. The main ingredient in the savoury treat is bread, which is used to produce separate layers. This was first seen at the start of the 20th century, when it was originally made using a white sauce instead of the now traditional eggs.

A simple Strata can be made by having layers of bread alongside cheese and a mixture of eggs and milk. The dish is then baked in the oven until golden brown. There are many different ways in which you can add your own touch to this dish, by including a variety of vegetables or meat, such as bacon, chicken, ham, mushrooms and spinach.

Fondue

Fondue

The origins of Fondue can be found in France, Switzerland and Italy. It has had many different forms, but the modern day variation was first seen in the 19th Century. It was originally made in the towns, rather than the mountain areas, using cheeses such as Gruyere. It became popular in America in the 1960s and 1970s when people took to holding fondue parties.

The melted cheese for a fondue is made with either Emmental or Gruyere cheeses, which are added to a mixture of white wine and corn flour. They are melted until it forms a smooth mixture. Any type of bread can be cut into pieces using a sharp knife, such as the Jamie Oliver bread knife, and then dipped into the melted cheese.

Next time you’ve got some bread to use up, why not try one of these recipes or create your own variation.

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