Instigator / Pro
4
1681
rating
89
debates
73.6%
won
Topic

On balance, Biscuits are more like breads than cakes

Status
Finished

All stages have been completed. The voting points distribution and the result are presented below.

Arguments points
0
9
Sources points
0
6
Spelling and grammar points
2
3
Conduct points
2
1

With 3 votes and 15 points ahead, the winner is ...

RationalMadman
Parameters
More details
Publication date
Last update date
Category
Miscellaneous
Time for argument
Three days
Voting system
Open voting
Voting period
One month
Point system
Four points
Rating mode
Rated
Characters per argument
10,000
Contender / Con
19
1776
rating
404
debates
67.45%
won
Description
~ 551 / 5,000

Cake: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cake
Bread: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bread
Biscuit: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Biscuit

BoP is shared. I argue that biscuits are more like breads than cakes on balance, while the contender argues that biscuits are more like cakes on balance. A middle ground means a tie and arguments amounting to proving a middle ground(for example, biscuits are nothing like either breads or cakes) amount not to their potential victory that is in the air.

This debate is stupid. I am serious. Accept to see what happens.

Round 1
Pro
Argument 1: "American" Biscuit

There is literally a kind of biscuit, in the US, that is made like bread, or kind of a scone[4]. I know, this is just one kind of biscuit and does not amount to much, but find me another well-circulated specimen of biscuits that is made with(not just "like") cake. Some parts of the English-speaking world literally call a kind of bread "biscuit", yet there is no explicit cake that is being called biscuit that I could find[5]. (biscuit cakes, application-wise, better pass as cakes than biscuits, since they are rather served as a whole dessert, instead of being small like the average biscuit; and Charlotte cakes are never explicitly biscuits).

[5] is a list of all the known cakes. No cake ever is explicitly biscuits. Try Control+F with keywords "Cookie" or "Biscuit".
[6] is a list of all the known breads. The "American Biscuit" is on the list.

Argument 2: Sweetness and Hardness

Biscuits can be savory, while cakes are sweet by definition. Breads, on the other hand, can also be savory and sweet.
[1]Biscuits today can be savoury or sweet, but most are small at around 5 cm (2.0 in) in diameter, and flat.

[2]Cake is a form of sweet food made from flour, sugar, and other ingredients,

[3]Bread can be served at many temperatures; once baked, it can subsequently be toasted. It is most commonly eaten with the hands, either by itself or as a carrier for other foods. Bread can be spread with butter, dipped into liquids such as gravy, olive oil, or soup; it can be topped with various sweet and savory spreads, or used to make sandwiches containing meats, cheeses, vegetables, and condiments.
Cakes are not very dense or firm, and the densest or firmest cakes can get in of itself would be with all-purpose flour. "Biscuit cakes" are usually because of biscuits being added into cake mixtures, and the actual "cake" is still nowhere as firm. All-purpose flours are basically what makes breads.
[2]Some recipes explicitly specify or permit all-purpose flour, notably where a firmer or denser cake texture is desired.
Whereas biscuits are usually firm or dense as they are unleavened.
[1]In most countries biscuits are typically hard, flat and unleavened.
And that breads can be very firm too, for example, Baguettes as well as regular bread crusts.
[3]Bread crust is formed from surface dough during the cooking process. It is hardened and browned through the Maillard reaction using the sugars and amino acids due to the intense heat at the bread surface. The crust of most breads is harder, and more complexly and intensely flavored, than the rest.
Argument 3: Purpose

Breads are a staple food.
[3]Bread is a staple food prepared from a dough of flour (usually wheat) and water.
Biscuits are invented as a staple food too and they probably still are used as so.
[1]Hard biscuits soften as they age. To solve this problem, early bakers attempted to create the hardest biscuit possible. Because it is so hard and dry, if properly stored and transported, navies' hardtack will survive rough handling and high temperature. Baked hard, it can be kept without spoiling for years as long as it is kept dry. For long voyages, hardtack was baked four times, rather than the more common two.[10] To soften hardtack for eating, it was often dunked in brine, coffee, or some other liquid or cooked into a skillet meal.
Whereas Cakes are, most commonly, desserts.
[2]Cake is a form of sweet food made from flour, sugar, and other ingredients, that is usually baked. In their oldest forms, cakes were modifications of bread, but cakes now cover a wide range of preparations that can be simple or elaborate, and that share features with other desserts such as pastries, meringues, custards, and pies.
Conclusions
  • I have listed many ways that biscuits are similar to breads whereas they aren't to cakes.
    • There are some breads called biscuits, but no proper cake is actually called biscuit.
    • Cakes are sweet, but biscuits and breads can also be savory.
    • Cakes are usually softer, but biscuits and breads can be firm and hard.
    • Cakes are usually desserts, but biscuits and breads are both meant to be staple foods.



Con
Theme tune to this Round debate relating to my comeback in the rating: 

Normally, one begins with their own case and then rebukes, yet in this debate I will open up with rebuttals first because there's improtant things to dismiss as being invalid before I begin my case.

The 'biscuit bread' is completely outside the scope of this debate.

First, let's prove that Pro knowingly abused semantics and debate goalpost moving in order to press forth his very first point.


This is the page where it's defined what a biscuit is, yet there is an entire separate Wikipedia page dedicated to the bread that happens to be called 'biscuit':


To make it even clearer that Pro knew this was completely outside the scope of the debate, here is something from the comments section:

Firstly there is a type of biscuit that genuinely is like bread, however since your wikipedia was more the other kind this is open to 'debate' indeed.

To be fair, removing a bit of water from what I can search as the "bread cake", then I think it is a biscuit the most than for either ends of the spectrum. Proving so gets no points.
Also, this is based on personal feelings. I do not intend on using the "American bread-like biscuit" as a point amounting to much. In fact, that is one kind out of thousands of maybe even thousands of possible biscuits so only one kind does not shift the balance towards the entire collectivity of biscuits towards the bread side.

So, Pro has knowingly gone for a very abusive semantic trick where he's found something else named 'biscuit' that happens to be the same word with a different definition.

Inside his Wikipedia definition, it's very clear that we're talking about a sweet treat that most people think of when discussing 'biscuit'.

~~~~

Turning the 'can be' point against Pro

It is true that 'biscuits can be savoury' (to a degree, because again Pro is abusively twisting semantics if he's going for the bread that happens to be called 'biscuit') but I will like to note that bread is meant to be savoury, even if you added sweet toppings like jam, jelly, chocolate spread and honey to it. The bread itself is towards the savoury end of the spectrum. So, the question shouldn't be if biscuits can be towards the savoury end of the spectrum but what they normally are.

Even more peculiar and interesting is that fact that Pro went for the American usage of the term yet used a Wikipedia page cleary dedicated to the more British usage of the term.

British: A small baked unleavened cake, typically crisp, flat, and sweet. ‘a chocolate biscuit’
North American: A small, soft round cake like a scone.

There is a thing that people assume everyone calls 'cookies' that the British and many Europeans call a format of biscuit but which Americans dubbed 'cookie' because their 'biscuit' was something very different that was a form of bread.

So, what I find interesting here is why Pro tried to bait people into this debate with a Wikipedia page blatantly definine biscuits as follows:
biscuit is a flour-based baked food product. In most countries biscuits are typically hard, flat and unleavened. They are usually sweet and may be made with sugarchocolateicingjamginger or cinnamon. They can also be savoury and similar to crackers. Types of biscuit include sandwich biscuitsdigestive biscuitsginger biscuitsshortbread biscuits, chocolate chip cookieschocolate-coated marshmallow treatsAnzac biscuitsbiscotti and speculaas. In most of North America, nearly all hard sweet biscuits are called "cookies", while the term "biscuit" refers to a soft, leavened quick bread similar to a scone; see biscuit (bread).

Let's focus on the ending there, do you see how after listing every format of biscuit under that lexical use of it, it then dedicated a separate sentence to let you know that North Americans tend to call those biscuits a variety of 'cookies' and instead has a different semantic usage of the term that has a separate Wikipedia page dedicate to it.

In other words, Pro knowingly, wilfully has made this debate about largely what North Americans call Cookies while intentionally preparing to switch around the debate to be about the other definition of it and the very savoury end of the spectrum.

The reason that Pro has to tell you they 'can be savoury' is that the standard biscuit, as per this debate's semantics, is not savoury but sweet. It would be like me telling you that some criminals can be overall reformable people that end up being law abiding citizens to convince you that criminals are law abiding citizens. At what point am I abusing the 'can be' aspect? We can find ends of a spectrum that fit our angle but this debate is about most biscuits, as per Pro in the comments section knowing full well that his own description supported that so his bait isn't bait, it's actually a genuine limitation to his abusive strategy.

~~~~~~

Let's wonder about context where we have cakes, biscuits and... sandwiches/toast

When you have cake, you have cake and when you have biscuits, you have biscuits. This is true even when they have things added to the core 'cake' (such as filling and icing, let alone topping). You don't call it less of a sweet biscuit or cookie (which are interchangable terms because of which Wikipedia definition is being used) due to it having toppings. You don't call a cake less of a cake because it has fillings nor do you switch the term to something equally 'filled cake'. Admittedly, brand names like oreos and jaffa caked exist for the filled biscuits but generally speaking, you do not ever have another term that is separate from biscuit or cookie for when they're filled. On the other hand, bread has two terms, namely 'sandwich' and 'bread', that refer to it in the format that we will consume it as a complete actual snack/meal. More importantly, unlike a cake and biscuit, a sandwich and toast form a proper meal, be it breakfast or lunch or even (yes some people have it for) dinner. In other words, 'bread' is definitively an incomplete meal by definition, it is a thing you add to, in order to complete it because it is bland and too dry on its own. In contrast, cakes and biscuits alike are themselves the form of baked goods that even when you add to them are still considered the identical term of pastry and this is because the concept of a cake and biscuit is to be the treat you end up having whereas bread is to be the wholemeal item that you fill as you want and which later had whiter, less extremely savoury varieties of it invented.

You don't call a cheesecake a non-cake, you call all filled and added-to breads sandwiches and even call it toast instead of bread when you further heat it to prepare for tongue-pleasing consumption.

~~~~~~~
Ways that bread is prepared vs cake vs biscuit

You can literally buy a bread-making machine due to the simplicity of bread-making. 


Any baker on the planet will tell you that while you can make bad bread, it's not nearly as hard to make good quality bread as it is to make good quality cake and biscuits. This is because just like in the section prior to this, breads are designed to be bland, boring and to be a pleasant 'backdrop taste/texture' item to the things you add to them.

Pro tries to mention that cakes are generally softer whereas biscuits are hard but breads are also soft and if you observe it, a bread is actually softer than a cake, it's just less moist (and no, these aren't the same thing). This is because bread is never designed to be the complete thing you intake, enjoy and digest. Cakes and biscuits are.

They are made with complex mixing and experimenting of ingredients, carefully designed in shaped of all sorts, biscuits most of all in fact as they are often indented with designs:


When you make bread, you just make it 'bread shape'... Which is basically the same every time.

When you make cakes, they alter almost just as much as biscuits because as I said, the role of the cake is to be a completely delicious snack and/or desert item that is sweet and delicious all on its own, that one needn't add a thing to in order to enjoy.


As for 'ingredients' I am not sure what Pro means. They're all similar and yet different to each other (bread, cakes and biscuits) but only cakes and biscuits have the extensive sugar and less flour added to it when compared with bread.
Round 2
Pro
After through research I have found that evidence against me piled up to an overwhelming degree, which means I am convinced biscuits are, in general, more similar to cakes. I concede. 
Round 3
Pro
Alright. I have already conceded, there is nothing more to say.
Con
There were ways to fight back but I had counter-moves to your counter-moves planned.

Ultimately, the 'sandwich and toast' aspect I felt was a fairly killer point as was the fact that bread is fundamentally savoury while the other 2 are sweet and that bread is part of genuine meals as a staple food (which I hadn't fully gone into in Round 1).

GG
Round 4
Pro
Con performed well and wrote a more solid argument than mine. GG.
Con