This week, I decided to pay tribute to my family, while also practicing my baking skills. During her last visit to Atlanta, my mother brought me some old cookbooks, including a few that belong to family members.
One of the French Canadian cookbooks belonged to my great aunt Bertha. It is called “Recettes Choisies Robin Hood”, by Rita Martin, published in 1947. Of course, since it is basically 130-page ad for the Robin Hood flour brand, it is filled with interesting baking recipes. I picked a recipe for “Couronne au fromage canadien” (Canadian Cheese Crown Loaf).
The recipe was extremely easy to make, and it reminded me of my beloved Irish soda bread recipe I used to make all the time (and still enjoy making with the kiddos at school!). It is a very dense bread as it doesn’t have a rising period before baking it. It bakes at a very high temperature in less than 30 minutes. While not the most elegant loaf of bread, it is very easy, cheap, and convenient for the perfect 1940’s housewife on the go! 🙂
Canadian Cheese Crown Loaf
- 2 cups of flour
- 3 teaspoons of baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon of salt
- 1/2 teaspoon of curry powder
- 4 tablespoons of butter
- 3/4 cup + 2 tablespoons of milk
- 2/3 cup of sharp Cheddar cheese, shredded
- Mix all the dry ingredients together.
- Using a dough blender, combine the butter into the dry ingredients until the butter pieces are about the size of half-peas.
- Make a well in the middle of the bowl and pour in the milk. Mix into the flour, using a fork, until you get a soft dough.
- On a clean and floured surface, knead the dough for 10-15 seconds.
- Roll the dough into a triangle, approximately 1/3-inch thick.
- Sprinkle the cheese on the rectangle. Roll the dough horizontally, as if it were a jelly roll cake.
- Place on a baking sheet (greased or covered in parchment paper) and join both ends of the roll to form a circle.
- Cut the dough about 1/3 in, every 2 inches. Twist each pieces on its side.
- Bake at 450F for 15-20 minutes.
This bread certainly isn’t the most elegant (that might have been partly my fault…), but it tasted great and the curry powder was a wonderful addition.
While this might not have been the best bread ever, it still felt like a warm piece of comfort. I have a feeling this won’t be my last baking experience this spring…I’m in the mood to practice my baking skills…both with retro and recent techniques! 🙂