Before the invention and widespread use of stoves, food was primarily cooked over open flames from a hearth. To roast meat, racks with skewers, or, if accessible, complicated gear arrangements, would be utilized to turn the piece(s). In the past, this method was often associated with the upper class and special occasions, rather than customary mealtimes, because it required freshly killed meat and close attention during cooking. It was easy to ruin the meat’s taste with a smoky fire or negligence to rotate it at regular intervals. Thus, elite families, who were able to afford quality meat, appointed this task to servants or invested in technology like automatic turning devices. With further technological advances, cooking came to accommodate new opportunities. By the 1860s, working families were able to afford low-priced stove models that became sufficiently available. However, the key element of observation during roasting became difficult and dangerous to do with the coal oven. Hence, traditional roasting disappeared as kitchens became no longer equipped for this custom and soon thereafter, "baking" came to be called "roasting".
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