Enfield Shaker Cracked Wheat Bread Recipe

ELDRESS ROSETTA CUMMINGS, ENFIELD SHAKER VILLAGE, NEW HAMPSHIRE
Enfield Shaker Cracked Wheat Bread
Enfield Shaker Cracked Wheat Bread

ORIGINAL RECIPE

“One kind of unleavened bread made of cracked wheat I do not see mentioned which I think very good. Take equal parts of milk and water scalding hot and stir in cracked wheat sufficient to make a stiff mush. After mixing let it set where it will have some chance to swell, tho’ you do not want thoroughly cook it. Put it while hot into shallow pans making the loaf about 3/4 of an inch thick, and bake in a hot oven. It looks better to cut it in checks before putting into the oven. When this is rightly managed it makes good and wholesome bread.”

Enfield Shaker Cracked Wheat Bread Recipe

KITCHEN-TESTED BY NAN MUNSEY, ENFIELD SHAKER MUSEUM

UPDATED RECIPE
1 1/4 cup (228 grams) cracked wheat
1 cup milk
1 cup water
1/2 teaspoon salt

In a large pot bring milk and water to an almost boil. Add slat and cracked wheat and stir to combine. Lower heat and simmer, stirring for five minutes. Cover and let sit for 1/2 hour for the cracked wheat to absorb the liquid and turn into a stiff mush.

Preheat your oven to 400° Fahrenheit and grease an 8-inch square pan.

Spread the warm mush evenly in the pan. With a table knife cut into 20 squares.

Bake at 400° Fahrenheit for 25-30 minutes.

Serve squares warm for breakfast with good butter and jam, or at room temperature for lunch with a slice of cheddar cheese and a bowl of hot soup. Either way, this Cracked Wheat Bread is nutty and delicious.

This recipe for Cracked Wheat Bread was included in a letter that Enfield Shaker sister Rosetta Cummings wrote to Eleanor Elkins, wife of Hervey Elkins, in the second half of the 19th century. Hervey Elkins had been a brother at the Enfield, NH Shaker community for 15 years, before leaving in 1852 to marry Shaker sister Martha Hart (sadly, she died in 1856) and to become an itinerant Universalist preacher, traveling around New England. The original letter is in The Galen Beale Collection: Letters of the Hervey Elkins Family. Enfield Shaker Museum very much appreciates the opportunity to share this recipe; as Nan Munsey writes, this Cracked Wheat Bread is nutty and delicious.

MENU