or "ait-breed," "bere-breed," according to the pronunciation of the district, while wheaten bread went by the name of "fite brehd," or "fite breed," i.e. white bread, and a slice of such went by the name of "a sheeve o' loaf," or "a sheeve o' fite brehd."
Oaten cakes are baked on a round piece of iron hung over a bright red fire. This utensil is named a "girdle." The oat-meal is mixed with water in a wooden or earthenware dish called "the bossie," and well wrought in it. It is then turned out on a square board called the "bake-brod," or "baking-brod," dusted over with meal, and again well wrought, and kneaded. It is then rolled out to a convenient size and thickness by "the roller," or "rolling-pin." The dry meal is then swept off the upper surface, and the cake is turned, either by placing another board over it, and reversing the boards, or by tossing it. The upturned side is next brushed clean of any dry meal on it. The cake is then placed on the "girdle." When sufficiently baked on one side, it is divided into four pieces by drawing the "baking-knife" through the centre, first from one side, and then from the other. The four pieces are called "quarters," or "quorters," according to the pronunciation of the district.
Old people looked with much reverence on "bread," as well as meal. To abuse either the one or the other was regarded as profane. To trample it under foot or cast the smallest quantity into the fire was set down as nearly allied to crime. Every crumb had to be most carefully swept up, and thrown forth as food for some of God's creatures. It was believed that any one guilty of casting meal or bread into the fire, or in any way destroying either the one or the other, would assuredly sooner or later come to want. Children were trained by parents who were well-disposed, honest, and thrifty to avoid the abuse of meal and bread in every way, and to look upon them as God's gift.
There were some who had very much the same respect for milk.
- See Volkskunde (Gent), vol. ii. pp. 9-12.