November is the first true month of fall, the month of celebrations of thanksgiving and, appropriately, the official month to celebrate a standard on most American dinner tables: bread.
National Bread Month is being marked by wheat farmers, millers, bakers, home bakers and bread enthusiasts in as many ways as there are varieties of bread.
Make a sandwich, have bread as part of a balanced meal, plan a special baking event for the holiday, seek whole grains, eat enriched rolls – you name it, and it will be enjoyed this time of year.
The 2012 National Bread Month is particularly exciting because this year also marks the 250th anniversary of the invention of the sandwich as a convenient and filling food, originally intended to help the Earl of Sandwich keep his concentration on his card game rather than dinner.
Now, Americans consume more than a billion sandwiches each year, with a recent survey commissioned by the Grain Foods Foundation finding 41 percent of American adults eat sandwiches up to six times a week.
Americans like their sandwiches so much that 86 percent of adults maintain they would rather spend their lunchtime eating a sandwich than checking Facebook!
Special for November, four new sandwich recipes are available from the Grain Foods Foundation and chef Bryan Voltaggio, online at www.gowiththegrain.org.
Bread recipes are abundant online, with a few resources at:
- the Wheat Foods Council’s baked goods page, www.wheatfoods.org/recipes/Baked%20Goods
- the Home Baking Association’s bread page, www.homebaking.org/recipes/index.html#breads
- the Whole Grains Council’s bread recipe page, www.wholegrainscouncil.org/recipes/breads
Creative amateur bread bakers should consider entering the 2013 National Festival of Breads competition, for which recipes are due Jan. 31 of next year. Much more information is at www.NationalFestivalofBreads.com.
And those who would rather leave their baking to the pros and just read a bit about bread can check out “Breads Around the World,” an educational publication provided by America’s Heartland and Food, Land and People at www.americasheartland.org/education/teachers/003_breads_around_the_world.pdf.
Much more about wheat – a key component of almost all breads – is online at the NAWG site, www.wheatworld.org/wheat-info.