When it comes to making the perfect sandwich, choosing the right type of bread is crucial to how the sandwich will taste. While there are hundreds of different types of bread to choose from, one of the lesser popular sandwich breads is pumpernickel. However, most people tend to stick to the breads they “know,” rather than taking a chance on their taste buds. Next time you’re looking to either buy or make a sandwich, here is why you should consider pumpernickel bread, as well as where it came from.
In terms of looks, pumpernickel is a distinct, dark brown shade. It’s similar to rye bread, and is sometimes part of what is called “Marble Rye.” In effect, pumpernickel tastes a lot like rye bread, but is much more dense in weight and sweet in taste.
The origin of pumpernickel is credited to Germany in the 1450’s, where it was first mentioned in print. Unlike more current forms of the bread, traditional German pumpernickel bread is much darker than the kinds we see in the store, with its deep brown, almost black color.
Unlike other popular breads, pumpernickel has been present throughout history and folklore. One of the more popular folktales about how pumpernickel got its name derives all the way from Napoleon Bonaparte. According to the tale, it was said that Napoleon didn’t find the bread suitable for himself, as it was popular and affordable amongst peasants, and gave it to his horse, named Nickel. Supposedly, Nickel took a liking to the bread, where he called it “pumpernickel” from then on. This would be a wonderful story if it were the truth about the origin of the name, but etymology experts have disproven this time and time again.
Aside of tasting delicious, pumpernickel is quite healthy. The bread has been recognized of having a low glycemic load, meaning that it has a lower carbohydrate count than many other popular sandwich breads.