Day 167 Rice Bread

Some those attending tomorrow’s picnic avoid gluten so I thought I’d try making Rice Bread for my sandwiches. This is one of the few breads in the 1906 Berlin Cook Book that doesn’t require wheat flour. I’m curious whether Maggie Seamens created this recipe or simply found it and submitted it for the cook book.

I measured out a cup of left over rice after warming 2 1/2 cups (1 1/4 pints) of milk. I also melted butter and beat the 2 medium eggs. I sifted the corn meal and added the salt and baking powder to it. Finally it was time to assemble the mixture. I combined the liquid ingredients and dry ingredients separately and then mixed them together. I am hoping to use this bread to make sandwiches so I spooned the mixture into a greased loaf pan and baked at 375 degrees F. for 40 minutes.

Despite her intriguing name, Maggie Seamens doesn’t appear in either the 1901 or 1911 Ontario census or on Waterloo Generations. It is possible that her surname was misspelled in the cook book or in the census. I tried a number of variations and still couldn’t find anyone remotely possible. Just like today, people moved around. They emigrated from other countries or moved from one province to another or simply from one town to another. The huge growth in factories in Berlin meant there were workers pouring in from all over to fill the jobs. Some factories relocated from other communities bringing some of their workers along. It is possible that these people didn’t stay very long, perhaps missing family and friends and simply the familiarity of their former communities.

Maggie Seamens’ Rice Bread is basically corn bread but with rice replacing the flour. The rice gives it an interesting texture since the grains of rice remain intact in the loaf. I had a slice warm with butter and it was surprisingly good. I’ll try it again cold tomorrow.

UPDATE: On Saturday this bread was still moist. I ended up offering it to the picnickers simply as small pieces of plain bread. It was a success with several of the adults — even those who don’t care if something has gluten. It doesn’t require the addition of butter or any other spread making it a good choice for some people. Maggie’s Rice Bread is another time travelling success.

1 cup of cold soft boiled rice, 1 1/2 pints of warm milk, 2 tablespoons of melted butter, 2 eggs beaten light, 1 scant teaspoon of salt, 2 cups of sifted corn meal, 2 heaping teaspoons of baking powder.

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