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67) ABOUT COMMERCIAL SUGAR WAFERS IN NORTH AMERICA First came UK imports: [1878] "Peek Frean & Co.

Sugar Wafers." ---display ad, Fitchburg Sentinel [MA] January 11, 1878 (p.

Small cakes and delicate wafers were gradually added to the family of biscuits. A kind of crisp dry bread more or less hard, prepared generally in thin flat cakes. In Scotland the usual name for a baker's plain bun; in U. While the English primarily referred to cookies as small cakes, seed biscuits, or tea cakes, or by specific names, such as jumbal or macaroon, the Dutch called the koekjes, a diminutive of koek (cake)...

In most English-speaking countries, the traditional definition of biscuit remains. According to the Oxford English Dictionary, the term "biscuit" debuted in the 14th century. The essential ingredients are flour and water, or milk, without leaven; but confectionery and fancy biscuits are very variously composed and flavoured. Etymologists note that by the early 1700s, koekje had been Anglicized into "cookie" or "cookey," and the word clearly had become part of the American vernacular.

Renaissance cookbooks were rich in cookie recipes, and by the 17th Century, cookies were common-place." "The term [cookie] first appeared in print as long ago as 1703." ---The Oxford Companion to Food, Alan Davidson [Oxford University Press: Oxford] (page 212).

"During the seventeeth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries most cookies were made in home kitchens.

Sweet biscuits had previously been imported from England.

The answer is an interesting buffet of linguistics, history, and technology.

They were baked as special treats because the cost of sweeteners and the amount of time and labor required for preparation.

The most popular of these early cookies still retain their prize status.

For centuries, no ship left port without enough bone-hard, twice-cooked ship's biscuit--the word biscuit comes from the Old French biscoit, meaning twice cooked---to last for months, or even years.

While sailors and other travelers chewed their way through unyielding biscuits, cooks of the ancient civilizations of the Middle East explored the culinary possibilities of sweetness and richness.

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