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Boston Brown Bread

As tradition dictates, René Becker bakes this bread in coffee cans to produce loaves that slice into rounds. The bread can also be baked in 8-by-4-inch loaf pans.

slideshow Great Comfort Food Recipes

  • Servings: MAKES 3 LOAVES

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  • 2 1/3 cups organic rye flour
  • 1 1/4 cups organic all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/4 cups organic whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup organic oat flour
  • 3/4 cup coarse stone-ground cornmeal
  • 1 tablespoon baking soda
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup dried currants or blueberries (4 ounces)
  • 1 quart milk
  • 3/4 cup unsulphured molasses


  1. Preheat the oven to 300°. Generously butter three 10-ounce coffee cans. In a very large bowl, combine the rye, all-purpose, whole wheat and oat flours. Stir in the cornmeal, baking soda, baking powder, salt and dried fruit.
  2. In a bowl, whisk the milk with the molasses. Slowly pour the liquid into the dry ingredients, stirring until the batter is smooth. Pour the batter into the prepared cans. Stand the cans in the center of the oven and bake for about 1 1/2 hours, or until the loaves are springy to the touch. Let cool slightly, then unmold. When the loaves have cooled to room temperature, wrap them in wax paper and store in the refrigerator in a sturdy plastic bag for up to 5 days.

Make Ahead

The loaves can be frozen for up to 1 month.

Contributed By Photo © Michael Weschler Published March 2000

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