Toast Water, a Depression Remedy Put to the Test

published Aug 18, 2016
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The inestimable Kat Kinsman at the breakfast-focused Extra Crispy has been on the search for food cures, traditional lore from the dawn of time, promising to make what ails you flee through the power of food. Her latest experiment? The Depression-era toast water.

It is exactly what it sounds like.

Toast water, in case you are inclined to doubt its very plainspoken name, is simply water that has been flavored with steeped toast, like chamomile tea without the chamomile, or a hot toddy without anything to toddy it. It did not, in case you are wondering, provide joy and healing.

Toast water tastes like a pond that is haunted by the ghost of toast that drowned in it. It is a mournful beverage.

What’s the point, you ask? Why bash those poor Depression-era cooks? There is a point, and that is that I love examining the remedies of the past; in food we often tend to fetishize what has come before. “Eat nothing your grandmother would not recognize!” and all that. But old folks were just like us; they had their health fads and weird ideas about clean eating. We’re all trying. Let’s just leave the toast water behind.

Read all about toast water at Extra Crispy: Toast Water Will Not Save You

Thanks for taking one for the team, Kat. We’ll steer clear.