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Recipe for New England Brown Bread

This recipe for New England brown bread is steamed on stove top. You will need a couple of empty tin cans to cook it.

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Tip: If desired, you can enhance this brown bread recipe by adding cinnamon, raisins, dates or walnuts after you have mixed the batter.

Tip: To sour milk, mix 1 teaspoon of vinegar with 1 cup of milk.

New England Brown Bread Recipe

This makes two loaves.


1/2 cup of whole wheat flour
1/2 cup of rye flour
1/2 cup of stone ground corn meal
3/4 teaspoons of sea salt
1 teaspoon of baking soda
1 cup of buttermilk, yoghurt or sour milk
1/2 cup of molasses


Prepare two tin cans by washing them and then brushing liberally with butter. Cans between 13 fluid ounces and 16 fluid ounces are fine for this recipe.

Mix the dry ingredients together.

Using a separate bowl, mix the wet ingredients together.

Stir the two together, but do not over mix. If you are using spices, fruits or nuts, add them at this time.

Divide the batter between your two tin cans. Tap the cans gently.

You will now enclose the tops of the cans in preparation for steaming. To do this, cover the top of each tin with parchment paper. Allow an overhang of about inches. Cut larger pieces of aluminum foil and wrap this over top of the parchment paper. Tie this on tightly. You can use a rubber band, hair tie, string or any other item that will do the trick.

Put the cans (upright) in a large pot. The pot needs to be large enough that you can put a lid on it when the cans are upright.

Add water to the pot, so the water comes half way up the cans. Put the lid on the pot.

Place the pot on a stove top burner, turned on high. Bring the water to a boil and boil for half an hour. At that point, lower the heat to a simmer and continue cooking for 60 to 90 minutes.

Test for doneness after about an hour. To do so, remove one can and remove the papers from the top. Test with a tester. If the tester comes out clean, the New England style brown bread is ready to eat.

You can serve it warm or at room temperature.

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