Baking Powder

Alfred Bird 1843

Alfred Bird
Alfred Bird

Alfred Bird was born in Nympsfield, Gloucestershire, England in 1811. He invented Baking Powder in 1843.

He was pharmacist and set up a chemist's shop in Birmingham 1837.
Alfred Bird Baking Powder
Alfred Bird Baking Powder

Alfred's wife, Lady Bird, was allergic to egg and yeast. Bird had already formulated an egg free custard for his wife , so at his business of Alfred Bird & Sons sought to find a simple raising agent for making bread and pastries without the need for yeast.

This formula for baking powder is essentially the same as is used in modern baking powders today.
Alfred Bird Plaque
Alfred Bird Plaque


Baking powder is a dry chemical leavening agent, a mixture of a weak alkali and a weak acid, and is used for increasing the volume and lightening the texture of baked goods. Baking powder works by releasing carbon dioxide gas into a batter or dough through an acid-base reaction, causing bubbles in the wet mixture to expand and thus leavening the mixture. It is used instead of yeast.
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