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The History of Gingerbread

Ginger first appeared in the southern parts of ancient China. From there, it spread to India, Maluku Islands (so-called Spice Islands), the rest of Asia and West Africa. Europe saw ginger for the first time in the 1st century when the ancient Romans traded with India.

So now that you know the history of ginger let's get to the story of gingerbread! The early form of gingerbread was by ancient Egyptians and Greeks who used it for celebrating. Later, an early European recipe for gingerbread consisted of ground almonds, stale breadcrumbs, rosewater, sugar and, naturally, ginger. The resultant paste was pressed into wooden molds. These carved works of art served as a sort of storyboard that told the news of the day, bearing the likeness of new kings, emperors, and queens, or religious symbols. The finished cookie might be decorated with edible gold paint (for those who could afford it) or flat white icing to bring out the details in relief. The English later added more ingredients so now we have an evolved gingerbread recipe to enjoy from year to year!

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