Author Archives: William Rubel

Flour Mills on the Seine, Paris

A boat water mill floating on the Seine in the 18th century towards the back of Notre Dame Cathedral This is an eighteenth-century print of a flour mill floating on the Seine with Notre Dame in the background. Until well… Read more
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Cooking a Road-kill Raccoon

Skinning a road kill raccoon by flashlight. This is the first time I have skinned and butchered road kill. Yes, I was apprehensive. But the raccoon was young, small by raccoon standards, had no visible injuries from having been hit… Read more
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Yeasted Bread and Good Health

A yeast advertisement that focuses on very old ideas associating poor digestion and ill health with dense bread. A wonderful massively interesting trade card for Warner’s Safe Yeast circa 1885-1890. To this day, companies sell products by creating fear and… Read more
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Flatbread with Olive Oil

I was at an event the other night at the California Academy of Sciences. Cocktail party talk. In that context I was asked what I am so often asked, "What is your favorite bread." It sounds flip, but it is true. My favorite bread is the most recent one I've made.
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Early Modern Kitchen Garden References

This post provides references to three works mentioned in my talk to the Farm to Table  New Orleans International Symposium, August 204, 2013. If you attended my talk I do encourage you to write to me with questions and comments.… Read more
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Making Cake from Bread Dough circa 1880

I’ve been reading the bread section from The Thrift Book: A Cyclopaedia of Cottage Management, a British book published in the 1880s. It is interesting for being written during a transitional period in home baking when bakers were shifting to… Read more
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Planting Wild Dandelions

Wild dandelions in a bucket. I have been growing dandelions in my garden for many years. Where I live in Northern California they are green all year. When they are watered and cared for the plants produce big luscious leaves.… Read more
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Spit Roast Bread — The Kneaded Loaf of 1823

Today, as part of my work on the glossary section of the history of bread I’m writing for UC Press, I have been researching the British Northern dialect term knodden cake, and its Standard English parallel, kneaded cake. I’m still… Read more
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Writing a History of Bread for UC Press!

I would like to announce that I am now under contract with UC Press for a comprehensive history of bread. This work work, due in October 2016, expands on the history I wrote for Reaktion Books, Bread: A Global History… Read more
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Sustainable Seed Company

This is a Northern California seed company with a vision for a sustainable future which in the context of its Northern California location includes minimal irrigation. The Sustainable seed company sells seeds to both small farmers and the home gardener.… Read more
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