The New Student's Reference Work/Bread

Bread, an article of food. Wheat is the best material for making bread; but other grains are used, such as rye, barley, Indian corn and rice.  The earliest bread was made without leaven or yeast, like the unleavened bread of the Jews and the oat cakes of Scotland and the corn cakes of America.  Leaven was used to raise bread, that is, to give it a spongy texture, before yeast.  It is simply a portion of moistened flour or dough which has begun to ferment, and so when added to the mass causes the rest to ferment.  Leaven is still used, but yeast has very generally taken its place.  The usual materials of bread are flour, yeast and water containing salt.  Many of the operations of breadmaking are now carried on by machinery.  Some bakeries use 2,000 bags of flour in a week.  Brown bread is made from the ground but undressed wheat, and so contains the bran as well as the wheat.