More About Bread
My mother was an outstanding breadmaker. She learned from Grandma Valentine (below, right) but there were great breadmakers on both sides of the family. Here are more recipes:
Meisel's Rye Bread
Meisel's rye bread was long considered the very best rye bread in St. Marys. Their store was a little white building on South St. Marys Street. There was a bell that jingles when you came in the door and a whole counter full of the most amazing penny candy. I used Meisel's as the model for Darling's Store in Each Angel Burns. There were two ladies who worked in Meisel's. They wore white aprons over flowered dresses, hairnets and big, clunky black shoes. I used to love to go there for a loaf of bread and some penny candy. When the store closed Miss Rose Ebrel was getting on in years and she gave the recipe for their rye bread to my mother because she said she didn't know who else to give it to. My mother was thrilled until a local ladies guild put out a cookbook and there was the recipe in the book. Apparently Miss Rose gave the recipe to everyone. Here it is:
Melt 1/2 tsp sugar in 1/4 cup warm water. Crumble in 1/2 cale yeast and set aside to work.
Mix together 2 1/2 cups rye four, 7 1/2 cups white flour, 2 1/2 tblsp salt, and 2 1/2 tblsp caraway seeds. Knead in 1 1/2 tblsp lard. Add 1 quart warm water. Knead in the yeast once it has begun to proof (bubble). Knead until the dough comes away from the bowl clean. Cover with a tea towel and set aside to raise.
When the bread is double in size, knead down and divide into four sections. Shape into long loaves and slit across the top three times on the diagonal. Bake at 350° until loaves sound hollow when tapped. Rub tops with shortening.
Gram's Pumpkin Bread
3 1/2 cups flour, 1 tsp cinnamon, 2 tsp soda, 1 1/2 tsp salt, 1 tsp nutmeg, 3 cups white flour
Make a well and add:
1 cup oil, 2 cups mashed pumpkin, 1 cup chopped nuts, 4 beaten eggs, scant 2/3 cupwater.
Mix well and pour into greased tin cans or loaf pans. Bake at 350° for 1 hour.
Mom's Zucchini Bread
This is soooo good!
2 cups sugar, 1 cup oil, 3 1/2 cup flour, 1 1/2 tsp baking soda, 1/2 tsp salt, 4 eggs, 1 cup chopped nuts, 1 cup raisins, 2 cups grated and drained zucchini, 1 tsp cinnamon, 1 tsp baking powder.
Stir well and pour into 3 greased and floured loaf pans. Bake at 350° for 1 hour.
Aunt Bonnie's Carrot Bread
4 eggs, 2 cups sugar, 3 cups flour, 1 1/2 cups oil, 2 tsp cinnamon, 2 tsp baking powder, 1/4 tsp salt, 1 1/4 tsp baking soda.
Beat together then fold in 2 cups shredded carrots. Bake in 2 loaf pans for one hour at 350°.
Gram's Cranberry Bread
2 cups flour, 1 cup sugar, 1 1/2 tsp baking powder, 1/2 tsp soda, 1 tsp salt, 1/4 cup shortening, 3/4 cup orange juice, 1 tblsp grated orange rind, 1 egg, 1/2 cup chopped walnuts.
Mix then fold in 2 cups chopped fresh cranberries. Bake in 2 loaf pans at 350° degrees for an hour. Let sit overnight before serving.
Florence's Banana Bread
Florence was Gram's friend who lived upstairs.
3/4 cup sugar, 1 cup chopped walnuts, 1/4 cup shortening, 2 eggs, 2 cups flour, 1 cup mashed bananas, 2 tsp baking powder, 1/4 tsp salt
Bake at 350° for 1 hour in two loaf pans.