A few of you may remember Pap and me making gritted bread last year. Pap remembers 2 different ways his Mother made what she called gritted bread. The one we tried last year isn’t something I’d care to try again, but since then I’ve wanted to try the other version Pap recalls from childhood.
Pap says this ‘fresh’ version of gritted bread was made at the end of the growing season-when the corn began to harden-but wasn’t dried completely.
We used a few ears of our field corn-since it’s much closer to what they grew when Pap was a boy-instead of the sweet corn most of us are familiar with today.
Wild Bill had to tag along to the garden-he has a penchant for corn-or actually any thing humans have that he doesn’t. Usually he steals what he can and takes it to one of his hideouts-one of which is underneath my back deck.
See the place where the kernels are missing? Pap says oldtimers called that a ‘run out’ and said it was caused by lack of rain. Makes sense considering the dry summer we’ve had here this year.
Pap used Granny’s grater to grate the corn. He said when he was a boy most folks had a homemade grater. Some folks used nothing more than an old can with nail holes punched in the end or side while others used more elaborate ones made from a piece of tin stretched over a board with parts of the tin tore back to form the ‘graters’.
After we had about 1 1/2 cups of grated corn-Pap added 2/3 cup of plain flour, 1 teaspoon of salt, 1 teaspoon baking powder, and 1 teaspoon of sodie (baking soda)
Pap beat 1 one egg and added it to a cup of milk
He then added 2 tablespoons of bacon grease-that he kept from breakfast that morning-to the milk/egg mixture
Pap poured the milk/egg/grease mixture into the flour/corn mixture and stirred it all up. Seems like he might have added a little more milk-but I can’t remember for sure. Pap said the batter should be like pancake batter. He greased his spider pan-heated it-and then poured in the batter.
Pap said he should have fried it like potato cakes but since we were talking-he forgot and poured the whole pan full. Once it was browned on one side-he cut down the middle and flipped both pieces so the other side could cook.
So what did I think-I liked it! When we made the first version of gritted bread-I could only imagine eating it if I had too. But this 2nd version I liked and I could see how folks would enjoying eating it plain or with a smear of honey which is how Pap likes it.
Have you ever had gritted bread-or even heard of it?