How Much A Loaf Of The Most Expensive Bread In The World Actually Costs

While food is primarily a means of fueling essential bodily processes, it's also a source of enjoyment. In addition to home cooking that invokes a nostalgic feeling or comfort foods that get you through a rough day, there are also foods that are steeped in luxury. These items typically come with a hefty price tag, which can leave the average foodie feeling a little envious.

BBC Radio 4 offers a list of the most expensive foods in the world, such as perfectly marbled Wagyu beef and white truffles sourced from a specific region in Italy, the only place where these precious little fungi will grow. Iberico ham, a product of Spain, is another fancy selection, one that is accompanied by an equally fancy price tag. The cured ham is procured from free-range pigs that subsist only on acorns towards the end of their three-year lifespan. If you're interested in treating yourself to the most expensive Iberico ham product, you may need to dip into your savings. A "Manchado de Jabugo" leg of ham that was priced at $3,842.39 (£3,192.76) in 2016 is now a whopping $4,368.08 per Gourmet Noir. Spain is also home to a costly loaf of bread that contains some special — and surprising — ingredients.

A loaf worth its weight in gold (and silver)

Madrid Metropolitan tells the story of the Pan Pina bakery, which is found in the village of Algatocin, in the province of Malaga. A staple of the community for nearly eight decades, this bakery is known for its motto "bread without rush," which highlights its dedication to quality baked goods made with the finest ingredients. In 2016, baker Juan Manuel Moreno was inspired to create a luxury loaf upon learning the world's most expensive coffee was available in the nearby city of Marbella. He also considered Costa del Sol, a region located in the Andalucía section of Spain (per Luxury Travel Magazine). Known for its many wealthy residents and visitors, Moreno knew that his creation would whet the appetite of the region's luxury-minded inhabitants.

And thus, the world's most expensive loaf of bread was born. The secret is edible gold, which Moreno combined with hulled wheat. At that time, loaves were priced at $124.54, or €117. The recipe then underwent a few tweaks, such as adding edible silver to enhance the precious metal quotient. This new selection was priced at $204.37 (€192). Further tweaks, like the inclusion of gold and silver flakes, increased the price tag to $1,575.39 (€1,480) most recently. Unfortunately, this special loaf doesn't seem to be available for purchase on the Pan Pina website. Luckily, there are many other quality breads available throughout the world — and they won't cost you more than a grand.

A rich and tasty culinary staple, no matter where you live

While an essential food in cultures all over the world, there's no "strict definition" of bread, explains "bread historian" William Rubel, per CNN Travel. Every culture and community that bakes the stuff adheres to its own recipes and traditions. Take arepas, for example. Found in numerous areas throughout South America (including Venezuela), arepas are a type of flatbread made from corn that can be enjoyed for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Then there's damper bread, which hails from Australia. Basic ingredients, such as salt, water, and flour, come together to be fried in a cast-iron skillet. It's unleavened and often baked on hot coals, according to 196 Flavors.

Indigenous peoples in Brazil and other sections of South America also show that a little ingenuity can turn a seemingly toxic ingredient into something delicious. Per Medical News Today, cassava is a root vegetable that over 800 million people consider an essential part of their diets. However, raw cassava root contains cyanide, a highly toxic chemical associated with numerous poor health effects. Indigenous peoples determined that a meticulous preparation process, which entails soaking and drying the root, can eliminate the toxic element to create an amazing treat that is beloved by so many. While these tasty selections are fairly easy on the budget, they may incur a plane ticket to a far-off destination if you want a taste of the real thing.