WIUM Tristates Public Radio

Le Pain Unquotidian

Apr 2, 2021

Demi Adejuyigbe (The Amber Ruffin Show) and Gabriel Gundacker (Our Cartoon President) rise to the occasion as they answer trivia questions about bread.

Heard on Alfonso Ribeiro: Jokes About Butts And Mild Transgressions.

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Demi, Gabe, would you like to play another game?


GABRIEL GUNDACKER: Just one more, please.



JONATHAN COULTON, BYLINE: Just one. We'll stop at one.

EISENBERG: Deal. Deal. So I don't know what you guys did at the beginning of the pandemic. It's such a weird thing to say, but I'll say it. At the beginning of the pandemic, if you were lucky enough to have extra time on your hands and not have a lot of other problems, maybe you were baking bread. Did you?

ADEJUYIGBE: Oh, yes, and still am.


GUNDACKER: It's a lot. I had to - I just did the Whole30 diet, and so there was a month there where I couldn't eat it, but now it's back. So now I'll be eating it again.

ADEJUYIGBE: Gabe did come upstairs yesterday and saw a entire chocolate birthday cake on our counter and was just sort of like, what is this? Why did you do this? And I didn't have a good answer for him.

GUNDACKER: It was nobody's birthday.

ADEJUYIGBE: It was nobody's birthday.

GUNDACKER: No one's birthday.

EISENBERG: Well, not nobody, just nobody you know. OK.

GUNDACKER: No. It's the one day that no one was born ever.


EISENBERG: That was it. No one liked that for sex nine months ago. At the beginning, especially for most people, everyone was baking bread. It became like the hot hobby. Some of us have continued. But that inspired us to write this multiple choice quiz about bread facts. You're also going to be competing in this game. Gabe, this first one is for you.


EISENBERG: Bread facts. Until the 1770s, bread was also used for what unconventional purpose? Was it, A, it was smashed up and used to erase pencil marks - B, a loaf was placed on the front door of country houses to signify safe haven for American soldiers in the Revolutionary War - or C, doctors would use the butt ends of bread to apply pressure to a wound?

GUNDACKER: Now, I don't know about bread as much as I know about science fiction films. I'm going to go B, war bread.

EISENBERG: War bread. Sorry, that is incorrect.


EISENBERG: Get this - people used to use them as erasers.

GUNDACKER: See, this is how stupid I am. I was like, they didn't have pencils in the 1700s.


EISENBERG: And if you're really accurate, you get a snack at the end of your project.

COULTON: Demi, in 19th century New Orleans, Mardi Gras king cake, which is technically a bread made with yeasted dough had a bean baked into the center until McKenzies's, one of the most popular bakeries, started using tiny baby figurines to represent the baby Jesus. Why did the baker, Donald Entringer, make this change? A, the baker's daughter collected dollhouses, and when the baker ran out of beans, he used dolls in a pinch. B, a traveling salesman with a surplus of baby figurines, you know the type, suggested the baker buy them all and use them. Or C, the baker was a devout Christian and thought the bean wasn't religious enough.

ADEJUYIGBE: I'm going to say C, devout Christianity.

EISENBERG: That's a fine guess. The answer is surprisingly B, a traveling salesman had a lot of baby figurines and suggested to the baker that he buy them and use them.

ADEJUYIGBE: That's a good salesman.

EISENBERG: Unloading - I know, right? I know,

ADEJUYIGBE: Beans, huh? Still using beans? Crazy. You should be using babies.

COULTON: Everyone's using babies now. In fact, I have a trunk full of them.

EISENBERG: Gabe, during World War I, the U.K.'s food ministry introduced the bread order of 1917, banning the sale of freshly baked bread. Why? Was it A, it was thought that freshly baked goods were more likely to carry food-borne illnesses? Was it B, the food controller argued that slightly stale bread is less appetizing and therefore it would encourage people to ration it? Or was it C, so that the employees of the food ministry could eat all the fresh bread before anybody else could?

GUNDACKER: I don't believe that food controllers are real, so I'm going to go A, bread-borne illnesses.

EISENBERG: Yeah, it does sound like the real one, doesn't it?


COULTON: But food controllers are real. They did it because they wanted the bread to be less appetizing so people would effectively buy less.

GUNDACKER: Wow. Let's not go back to that time.

COULTON: All right. This is the last clue. Demi, it's for you. Why were some miners during the California gold rush nicknamed Sourdoughs? A, they were the ones with the sourest moods. B, they were the newest miners to California. Or C, they would sleep huddled around jars of starter they brought with them to keep them warm and therefore active.

ADEJUYIGBE: I'm going to go with C, that they were sleeping around jars of starter.

COULTON: Yeah, you are correct. Everybody kept their starter with them. Once you - you know this surely. Once you get a starter going, you don't ever abandon it.

ADEJUYIGBE: Well, no, you can't.

GUNDACKER: That name came about because some local travelers saw these miners doing that and they said, sourdough miners keeping so warm.

ADEJUYIGBE: Oh, my gosh.

COULTON: That's pretty good.

GUNDACKER: (Laughter) That's really good. Thank you, Demi, Gabe. Thank you so much for joining us.

ADEJUYIGBE: Thank you for having us.

GUNDACKER: Absolutely.

EISENBERG: After the break, I'll talk to Alfonso Ribeiro, aka Carlton from "The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air." And he also drives race cars. That's right. We think that's amazing because race car is a palindrome. I'm Ophira Eisenberg, and this is ASK ME ANOTHER from NPR.

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