If the end of bread is not called the heel, then what do you call it?

Posted By on May 28, 2020

What do you call the two pieces of bread that bookend all of the slices?

Every once in a while, a quirky story gets me thinking and talking to those around me. I once though everyone called the ends of a loaf of bread the “heels.” LoafOfBreadUnbeknownst to me, even my wife had a different term .. “the ends.”

An informal online survey back in 2018 collected responses from people around the world and they relayed their terms, most I expected they inherited from their families. The result was that most called it the “heel” (36.7%, including Norwegians using the term “skalk” – translated to heel). That term was followed by 27.6% who called it the “end” (or the end piece or the end slice”). If as before we look to  Scandinavian countries, they might call it the “endeskiver” (translated to end washer or end disk). 

The third most popular is the “butt” or the loaf which makes up 20% of those who responded. And since with still have a few responses unaccounted for … even a small percentage call it “the crust” like almost everyone from Wales. Don’t they know “crust” is just the outside of the entire loaf?

Still there were a few more names:

Czechoslovakians call it "patka" .. which translates to "flap" or "strap" in English and the Scottish had quite a few name: the "doorstep," the "outsider," or the "knobby."

And since more people agreed that the worst part of the loaf is the heel, end or butt, it might be understandable why a few try reverse psychology. “Oh, the ends are the best part of the loaf … they “the tasty boys.”  Huh?

A list of some anti-end-of-slice terms included "trash," "garbage," "the ugly slice," "the nasty slice," "Satanspawn," and "Piece Of S— That No One Likes."

A few called it "the dog’s bread" or "duck bread" because they felt it was not fit for human consumption and thus fed it to animals. 



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