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So, what did cooks do before baking powder was invented? - Resources!

 
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My journey into baking without baking powder started with a simple question - what did cooks do before baking powder was invented? When I read the Little House on the Prairie series, I read that they used "saleratus," but what was that? I started to research historical recipes online, but discovered that most of them had been updated with modern ingredients and techniques. I finally found some answers in historical cookbooks, plus videos by historical reenactors.

Here are links to many of those wonderful resources, so that you can experiment too. All of the cookbooks are public domain, and are either online versions or PDF downloads.

The American Frugal Housewife by Lydia Child

Mrs. Beeton's Cookery Book

Mrs. Beeton's Book of Household Management

The Practice of Cookery by Mrs. Dalgairns

Dr. Chase's Receipt Book and Household Physician

The American Frugal Housewife by Lydia M. Child

MSU's online collection of 76 historical cookbooks

TWU's cookbook digital archive

Dr. Chace's Receipt Book and Household Physician

I have more on my other computer, which I'll try to add later today.
 
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The Townsends (historical reenactment channel on youtube) did a 4-part series on this.





With his personal recipes he tends to favor barm (byproduct of beermaking) for leavening.
 
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This book was recommended by a guy here on the forums.  He had the link to the book though I wanted a print copy so I found it for sale and purchased it.

It was published in 1829 and I am fascinated with some of the things that I have learned from it.

And I see that it is the first link that Leigh posted.

I hope some of you will enjoy this book as much as I do.

The American Frugal Housewife

This book has several recipes for things that do not use baking powder, recipes for making your own yeast, etc.
 
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Learning about how things used to be done without today's technology fascinates me. I'd very much like to read Leigh's book as baking is one of my interests that I actually pursue.
 
Anne Miller
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I would like to add /Fannie-Farmer-Boston-Cooking-School to the list.

The Boston Cooking-School Cook Book was written in 1896.

The link is to the 3rd Edition 1918.  

Gingerbread and Cakes

Theses are made without leavening ingredients.
 
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Leigh Tate wrote:My journey into baking without baking powder started with a simple question - what did cooks do before baking powder was invented? When I read the Little House on the Prairie series, I read that they used "saleratus," but what was that? I started to research historical recipes online, but discovered that most of them had been updated with modern ingredients and techniques. I finally found some answers in historical cookbooks, plus videos by historical reenactors.

Here are links to many of those wonderful resources, so that you can experiment too. All of the cookbooks are public domain, and are either online versions or PDF downloads.

The American Frugal Housewife by Lydia Child

Mrs. Beeton's Cookery Book

Mrs. Beeton's Book of Household Management

The Practice of Cookery by Mrs. Dalgairns

Dr. Chace's Complete Receipt Book and Household Physician

The American Frugal Housewife by Lydia M. Child

MSU's online collection of 76 historical cookbooks

TWU's cookbook digital archive

Dr. Chace's Receipt Book and Household Physician

I have more on my other computer, which I'll try to add later today.



Definitely found tje Mrs Beetons household management and recipes useful to adapt wjen my kids were small.
These days i use yeast to make raised cakes, buns, brioches, puddings, breads with grains and nuts, seeds and dried fruit.  I preferto use honey over sugar as its bery healtjy in terms of antiviral anyiseptic and if selected can be organic. I avoid sugar for health reasons.
There are other ways of creating a 'fizz' using eg very bubbly yogurt or fermented jam, and for tjose wvo use eggs, making stiff dough or thick batterpancales will create a lifted bubbly texture.
Classic acid /alkali mix (vinegar pie/cake mix with fermented soya yogurt, carob, or cinnamon and spice mixwith raisins, honey cake with ginger, all can be raised with eg sourdough, using buckwheat or ryeflour, or spelt.
If anyone's interested, i could post some experimental recipes , but mostly I would 'make it up as i went along' with balancing acid alkali and mixing, particularly with rich fruit cakes for Christmas, Easter Simnel cake with marzipan, family celebrations, Christenings or birthdays.
 
Leigh Tate
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Jane Johnson wrote:If anyone's interested, i could post some experimental recipes , but mostly I would 'make it up as i went along' with balancing acid alkali and mixing, particularly with rich fruit cakes for Christmas, Easter Simnel cake with marzipan, family celebrations, Christenings or birthdays.


Jane, post them here!  -> DIY Leavening Power - Recipes!

That's what that thread is for and I'd love to see yours. I'm hoping it will become a helpful recipe collection for everyone interested in baking without baking powder.
 
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