Irish Soda Bread (1940)

James A. Landau JJJRLandau at AOL.COM
Fri Aug 17 00:08:28 UTC 2001

In a message dated 08/08/2001 11:35:09 AM Eastern Daylight Time,
pskuhlman at JUNO.COM writes:

>     A check of my older cookbooks confirms that my grandmother's "The
>  Settlement Cookbook"  (first edition?  rebound without the page that
>  gives publication date, but a hand note indicates she received it in 1917
>  at the time of her marriage) has a section for "Quick Breads" and some
>  are made with just baking soda, e.g White Nut Bread, Brown Nut Bread,
>  Graham Bread with Buttermilk and Bran Bread.  There is no mention of
>  Irish soda bread -- not surprising as "The Settlement Cookbook" published
>  in Milwaukee has a more German influence.

I have the 2nd (1902) and 6th (1912?) editions of _The Settlement Cook Book_.
 Neither one uses the phrase "quick bread" although both contain a number of
baking-powder recipes.  The OED2 has a 1920 citation for "quick bread" and
the 1999 edition of Merriam-Webster's 10th Collegiate has a date of 1918.  So
it looks as if you have an antedating.

To attempt to determine the publication date and edition number of your copy,
use the following URL (supplied by Barry Popik):
  Be sure to check under ALL the entries for "Mrs. Simon Kander"

German influence?  Not exactly.  The "Settlement" is the forerunner of
today's Milwaukee Jewish Community Center and the audience for the
_The Settlement Cook Book_ was Jewish, more exactly Jewish cooks who did NOT
keep Kosher.  It is quite possible that the Milwaukee Jewish community at the
time was predominantly of German descent (from the Revolution-of-1848 era
until the beginning of mass Jewish immigration from Russia in 1881, immigrant
Jews in the US were mostly German, who tended towards Reform Judaism and
non-observance of Kosher laws.  Ca. 1900 Jews in the United States were quite
conscious of which part of Europe they were descended from).

               - Jim Landau

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