I’m putting together a little series of Welsh breads. I’m not looking for “authenticity” – there don’t seem to be many sources of authentic recipes. I’m just taking what there is and if it’s yeasted, converting it to sourdough, if it’s cooked in a cast iron pot trying out versions that can be made in an oven, trying to work with local flours.
Anyway, I’m reading Bobby Freeman’s “First Catch Your Peacock” and she gives a recipe for Steamed Brown Bread from Caernarfonshire, now part of Gwynedd where I live, which she says comes from “Farmhouse Fare” 1966 edition, a compilation of recipes from Farmers Weekly magazine.
She says it was baked in stone marmalade jars which made me think of Boston Brown Bread being baked in coffee tins. So I dig out a recipe for Boston Brown Bread and …. the recipes are identical.
At first I think, “Wow, Boston Brown Bread must have come from this traditional Welsh recipe!”. But then I think, someone sent this recipe to a farmers’ periodical in 1966. Did they just happen to have an American recipe that they thought other people might like to make?
Can anyone cast light on the origins of Boston Brown Bread or about Welsh Steamed Brown Bread?