As immigrants came from outside the United States and settled in pockets around Chicago, each neighborhood had its own bakery—and sometimes several. At one time, more than seven thousand bakeries dotted the city streets. Stalwarts like Roeser’s, Weber’s, Pticek and Ferrara continue a legacy that shaped Chicago’s food traditions: an atomic cake for family celebrations, bacon buns in the morning or a poppy seed bun for hot dogs and pączki and zeppole for holidays. Even the never-ending debate over seeded or unseeded rye. From pioneering bakers to today’s cake makers, author Jennifer Billock puts the sweet and doughy history of Chicago on display.
Jennifer Billock is an award-winning writer, best-selling author, editor and owner of the boutique editorial firm Jennifer Billock Creative Services. She has worked with businesses and publishers, including the Smithsonian, the New York Times, National Geographic Traveler, Disney Books, The Atlantic, Kraft Foods, Midwest Living, Arcadia Publishing and the MSU Press. She is currently dreaming of an around-the-world trip with her Boston terrier. Check out her website at www.jenniferbillock.com and follow her on Twitter @jenniferbillock.