WWI bread recipes were divised during the war to help conserve food resources. The United States government published a booklet that showed homemakers how to use less wheat, meat, sugar and fat. The booklet is titled “Foods That Will Win The War And How To Cook Them “ (1918), by C. Houston Goudiss and Alberta M. Goudiss.
Those resources were needed to help win the war. The U.S. government needed to keep it’s troops fed and help keep its allies supplied with shipments of food.
The bread recipes used less wheat flour and more cereal grains. Instead of sugar molassesd or corn syrup was used. Fat was reduced or eliminated. Homemakers wre advised to bake fewer yeast breads and more quick breads since those used less wheat flour. The first recipe is for a yeast bread but it uses less wheat flour than usual. The second is a recipe for cornmeal rolls and once again uses less wheat flour. I have rewritten the recipes to make them clearer.
War Bread or Thirds Bread
- 2 cups of milk, or milk and water
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 2 tablespoons molasses
- 1 package of yeast
- 2 tablespoons of fat
- 2 cups of rye flour
- 2 cups of cornmeal
- Enough wheat flour to knead
Grease a a large loaf pan or two small ones.
Disolve the yeast with a teaspoon of sugar in ¼ cup baby bottle warm water in a small bowl. Set aside about 10 tto 15 minutes until bubbly and double in size.
Heat the milk/water to boiling. Put the salt, molasses and fat in a large bowl. Pour the boiling liquid over those and stir to mix. Let sit until lukewarm.
Stir the yeast into the mixing bowl. Add the cornmeal and rye flour and mix well. Knead well and shape the dough into a ball. Grease a bowl and roll the dough in it to grease all sides of the dough. Cover and set in a warm draft free place to rise until double in size. Turn dough out of bowl, shape and place in the loaf pans. Let rise unttil the top of the loaf is about ½ inch above the rim of the pan.
Pre-heat the oven to 420 degree F. and bake for 45 minutes, remove from oven and let sit a few minutes before removing from pan. Cool on a wire rack.
- 1 cup of bread flour
- 1 cup cornmeal
- 4 traspoons of baking powder
- 2 tablespoons of fat
- 1 egg
- 1/3 cup of milk
- 1 ½ tradspoons of salt
- 1 tablespoon of sugar
Pre-heat the oven to 400 degree F. and prepare a baking sheet.
Combine the dry ingredients in a mixing bowl and cut in the fat, butter or shortening. Beat the egg and mix into the milk. Add the milk and egg to the dry ingredients and mix. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and toss a few times until not sticky. Roll out about 1/2 inch thick and cut with a round biscuit cutter. Crease each in half with a table knife and fold ovet like a Parker House roll. Place on baking sheet and bake for 12 to 15 minutes.
The yeast bread recipe does not say how many loaves it will make. I think it will only make one large loaf. It would probably make two loaves if free formed and baked on a baking sheet. Or baked in smaller pans.
The roll recipe is made exactly like biscuits. The only difference is half of the flour is cornmeal and the rolls are folded after cutting. Brush half of the cut dough with butter before folding. That was not stated in the recipe because of the need to trduce the use of butter.