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Thirded Bread

Yield 2 loaves, 12 slices per loaf (serving size: 1 slice)
Before wheat became cheap and plentiful in the late 1860s, bread was often made with readily available rye flour and cornmeal. As a result, it was low in gluten and very dense. Sometimes wheat flour was added, which accounts for the moniker. This bread is great for sandwiches and makes marvelous toast.


  • 1 cup stone-ground yellow cornmeal
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1 1/2 cups 1% low-fat milk
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter, cut into pieces
  • 1/2 cup molasses
  • 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, divided
  • 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup stone-ground rye flour (such as Hodgson Mill)
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 2 packages quick-rise yeast (about 4 1/2 teaspoons)
  • Cooking spray

Nutrition Information

  • calories 169
  • caloriesfromfat 14 %
  • fat 2.7 g
  • satfat 1.4 g
  • monofat 0.7 g
  • polyfat 0.3 g
  • protein 4.5 g
  • carbohydrate 32.3 g
  • fiber 2.5 g
  • cholesterol 6 mg
  • iron 1.8 mg
  • sodium 324 mg
  • calcium 39 mg

How to Make It

  1. Combine first 3 ingredients in a large, heavy saucepan, and bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring occasionally. Cook for 2 minutes, stirring frequently with a whisk. Remove from heat; add butter, stirring until melted. Stir in molasses. Let stand for 15 minutes or until warm (100° to 110°).

  2. Lightly spoon flours into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine 3 cups all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour, rye flour, salt, and yeast in a large bowl. Add warm cornmeal mixture to flour mixture, stirring with a wooden spoon until combined.

  3. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Knead until smooth and elastic (about 8 minutes); add enough of remaining flour, 1 tablespoon at a time, to prevent dough from sticking to hands (dough will feel tacky).

  4. Place dough in a large bowl coated with cooking spray, turning to coat top. Cover the dough, and let rise in a warm place (85°), free from drafts, 1 1/2 hours or until doubled in size. (Press two fingers into dough. If indentation remains, dough has risen enough.) Punch dough down. Cover and let rest 5 minutes.

  5. Divide dough in half. Working with 1 portion at a time (cover the remaining dough to keep from drying), roll each portion into a 14 x 7-inch rectangle on a lightly floured surface. Roll up each rectangle tightly, starting with a short edge, pressing firmly to eliminate air pockets; pinch seam and ends to seal. Place each roll, seam side down, in an 8 x 4-inch loaf pan coated with cooking spray.

  6. Lightly coat the loaves with cooking spray; cover and let rise 1 hour or until doubled in size.

  7. Preheat oven to 375°.

  8. Bake at 375° for 40 minutes or until loaves are lightly browned and sound hollow when tapped. Remove the loaves from pans, and cool completely on wire racks.