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Questions tagged [history]

Questions pertaining to current culinary practices and foods--how did we get where we are today?

43
votes
7answers
17k views

Why are there so many different pasta shapes?

Do the different pasta shapes serve any purpose, or are they just for fun? Some difference appear to be cultural (lo mein vs spaghetti), but there are so many different syles of Italian pasta, is ...
3
votes
2answers
302 views

Is “medium white sauce” a usefully distinct term?

I am familiar with a basic white sauce, or béchamel, and know how to make it. I recently came across a recipe (circa 1950's) that calls for 1 cup medium white sauce. Is this the same as a béchamel? (...
16
votes
2answers
2k views

Why are non-orange coloured carrots so uncommon?

Carrots come in a great variety of colours, from almost white to dark purple. However, the most ubiquitous colour variety is orange, and often the only to be found in regular supermarkets. Why is this?...
30
votes
12answers
71k views

Why did my grandfather-in-law salt his beer?

My grandfather-in-law was born in England in the 1920s and fought in World War II. Somewhere along the line he acquired the habit of salting his beer before drinking it, which persisted for the rest ...
10
votes
2answers
258 views

Interpreting a recipe from Mrs Beeton: “carbonate of soda”

Prompted by a discussion at English.se I may be going to make Mrs Beeton's soda biscuits recipe: SODA BISCUITS. INGREDIENTS.—1 lb. of flour, 1/2 lb. of pounded loaf sugar, 1/4 lb. of fresh ...
5
votes
3answers
4k views

Cooking cakes on asbestos mats

My mother tells me when she was young her mother would bake cakes on an asbestos mat inside a lidded electric frypan. I'd assume the practice is gone now because of the reputation of asbestos, but ...
3
votes
1answer
1k views

What is the history of the standard sheet (bun) pan?

What is the history of the standard sheet (bun) pan? Who came out with the sizing? Why that size? When did it occur? There are full size(26x18 Inch), half(18x13) and quarter(13x9). image from