These wheat-free bread recipes come from 1918, during the height of World War I, when the country was asked to save wheat for the troops.

In a statement issued in May 1918 by the U S Food Administration of California: “So serious is the situation, so vital the need for saving wheat and wheat products, that the government is asking every man and woman in America to stop eating, voluntarily, all foods containing wheat flour and wheat products in any form, and in no case to eat more than one and one half pounds a week.”

Indeed, one national slogan of the era was: “Remember — foods are as important as firearms in war times.” (See more wheatless recipes here.)

1. Wheatless yeast bread

One cup rolled oats, scalded with one cup of milk.
Three medium sized potatoes. cooked and mashed, and one cup of potato liquid.
Two cups of barley flour.
Four cups of rye flour.
One level tablespoon salt.
One and one-half cake of yeast.
Enough rye flour to form into loaves.

When scalded rolled oats are cool, add yeast which has been softened in two tablespoons of warm water. Add potatoes and salt and heat thoroughly. Add remaining liquid and flour. Knead slightly. Place in pan and allow to double in bulk. Work down, form into loaves, and place in bread pans.

This makes three loaves, one and one-half pounds each. When double in bulk, bake one hour in moderate oven.

– From the Indianapolis Star (Indiana) – May 18, 1918


2. Wheat-free yeast bread recipe

Two cups barley flour, one and one-half cups oat flour, one cup milk, two teaspoons salt, one tablespoon corn syrup, one cake compressed yeast, one-quarter cup lukewarm water. Soften the yeast in the lukewarm water. Scald the milk and add the syrup and salt. When this becomes lukewarm, add one and one-half cups of barley flour and all the oat flour, sifted. Beat the dough, and let it rise until it is light. Add the remaining cup of barley flour and turn the dough into greased pans. Let it rise for 20 to 30 minutes, until it rounds somewhat over the top. Bake the bread in a slow oven from one to one and one-quarter hours.

– From The Ithaca Journal (New York) – July 11, 1918


3. Wheatless bread recipe

1 pound rye
1/2 pound potato flour
1/2 pound barley flour
1/2 pound rice flour
1/2 pound corn flour
1 ounce yeast
1 ounce salt
1 quart water

Mix flour and salt together, add yeast and water, and mix to a stiff dough. Knead on floured board until elastic and light, set to rise until double in bulk. Cut down and form into loaves, set to rise again, and when double in bulk, bake in hot oven.

– Hotel Martinique, New York


4. Wheat-free bread: Potato yeast bread recipe

1 or 2 cakes compressed yeast.
1 cup lukewarm water
4 teaspoons salt
3 tablespoons corn syrup
2-1/2 cups mashed potatoes
1 cups flour (more or less may be needed)

Mix as follows: Soften the yeast in the liquid and then add (1) salt: (2) syrup. (3) potato and (4) enough of the flour to make a stiff dough. Mix and knead thoroughly. Let rise 12 hours, or until double in bulk. Knead or cut down the dough and add the remaining flour, and let rise again until double in bulk (about 1-1/2 hours). Shape into loaves. Let rise in pan until double in bulk. Bake 50 minutes to 1 hour.

5. Oatmeal yeast bread recipe

1 quart water
1 or 2 cakes compressed yeast
4 teaspoons salt
3 tablespoons molasses
3 cups rolled oats
8 cups flour

Mix as follows: Soften the yeast in one-half cup of the water (lukewarm). Heat the rest to boiling, then stir in the rolled oats. Let it boil up once. Cool, add the salt and syrup, and when lukewarm, add the softened yeast. Then add the flour to make a stiff dough. Mix and knead thoroughly. Let rise 12 hours, or until double in bulk. Knead or cut down the dough and add the remaining flour, and let rise again until double in bulk (about 1-1/2 hours). Shape into loaves. Let rise in pan until double in bulk. Bake 50 minutes to 1 hour.

6. Wheat-free bread: Rice bread recipe

1 quart water
1 cup rice
1 or 2 cakes compressed yeast
1/2 cup lukewarm water
4 teaspoons salt
3 tablespoons corn syrup
6 cups flour

Mix as follows: Cook rice until soft, in the one quart of water. Cool until lukewarm, then add (1) the yeast softened in the one-half cup of lukewarm water, (2) the salt, (3) syrup, and (4) the flour. Mix and knead thoroughly. Let rise 12 hours, or until double in bulk. Knead or cut down the dough and add the remaining flour, and let rise again until double in bulk (about 1-1/2 hours). Shape into loaves. Let rise in pan until double in bulk. Bake 50 minutes to 1 hour.

– From the San Anselmo Herald (California) – May 10, 1918


 

Near-wheatless bread recipe

Try this on your range: Potatoes, oatmeal flour and barley flour ingredients

Mrs. Frank Creasey of Bisbee was awarded the prize of $25 offered by a member of the food administration staff for Arizona for the best near wheatless recipe for yeast bread. The prize recipe is as follows:

Yeast: Boil one large potato till very soft; strain off the water and keep it hot. Mash potato very fine. Into this put one teaspoonful of salt and one teaspoonful of sugar; beat well. On top of this mixture put one big handful of dry flour, then pour on this the hot potato water; beat this well until it is like hot cake batter; set away to cool. When lukewarm, add one yeast cake (preferably Yeast Foam) which has been soaked in warm water. Stir well and put in a warm place to rise.

Ingredients: 1 quart mashed potatoes, 2 cups oatmeal flour, 1 quart barley flour, 1 cup wheat flour, 1 teaspoonful sugar, 1 tablespoonful salt, 1 teaspoonful Cottolene [shortening]

Method: Start your bread at night by placing the above ingredients in a large mixing pan. Boil well six large potatoes; mash very fine. Save potato water, and when cool pour on the warm mashed potatoes and mix well. Pour yeast mixture into mixing pan, stir well; add mashed potatoes; mix thoroughly by beating three minutes. Do not make this sponge any thicker than cake batter. Set away to rise.

In the morning, knead this up with one quart of wheat flour and one quart of oatmeal flour mixed dry. Knead stiff until the dough does not stick to board or hands. Grease the top and set away to rise. When it has risen to top of pan, knead down again. Mould into loaves. Allow to rise again and bake in moderate oven at least one hour. This makes seven large loaves.

– From the Mohave County Miner (Arizona) – July 13, 1918


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Filed under: 1910s, Bread recipes, Newspapers

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