Wednesday, October 3, 2012

50 State of MoFo: South Carolina Rice Breads

Once upon a bygone day, South Carolina produced a lot of rice.  As it was cheap and local, rice was used to stretch more expensive wheat in breads.  As rice production waned in the early 20th century, these rice breads became less common.  My favorite rice bread is philpy, the flatbread pictured above.  It is a wonderful use for leftover rice.   You can use any kind of rice, although I think brown rice gives the best flavor.
 In a blender or food processor, combine 3/4 c COOKED brown rice and 1/2 c nondairy milk. Blend until smooth, and pour into a bowl. Gently stir in 1/2 c all purpose flour (or cornmeal) and 1/2 t salt. You may not need the salt if your rice was already salted. Then add 2 t melted margarine (or shortening or oil) and the vegan equivalent of 1 egg. (For the egg, I used George Burke's formula of 2 T flour whisked with 1 1/2 t oil, 1/2 t baking powder, and 2 T water, but you could probably use a flax egg or Ener-G.) Gently stir to combine and spread in a well-greased 8 inch cake pan. Bake 30 minutes at 450 F.

Here is another rice bread, this time a loaf.   Again, you can use any sort of cooked rice in this recipe.  For the loaf in the photo, I used a mix of red, brown, and wild rice.  If you wanted to be super-traditional, you could use Carolina Gold.   

1/2 lb. raw rice
1/4 c. warm water
1 t. yeast
1/4 c. sourdough starter (optional but nice)
16 oz. whole wheat flour
16 oz. all purpose flour
salt to taste (about 2 t.), unless you cooked the rice with salt

Cook the rice according to package directions for whatever sort it is.   Set aside until lukewarm.  Dissolve the yeast in the warm water.   Mix the yeast, sourdough starter and rice until well-combined.  Gradually add the flour until you have a good bread dough.  Knead for 7-8 minutes, place in a covered bowl, and let rise until double  (which can take several hours).  Punch down, knead for a moment, divide into two loaves, and place in greased loaf pans.  Bake at 350 F for about 50-60 minutes until it appears done.    (The moisture content and loaf size can vary a lot depending on the rice you used, so you simply have to keep an eye on it.)

This works well as an overnight dough, too.  Proceed through the initial kneading, place in a covered bowl and put it in the fridge overnight (or for a few days).  Take it out about 2-3 hours before you want to bake.  Shape the loaves, put them in greased pans and let them rise.  Bake as above.  


Jes said...

I'm a big fan of traditional southern foods, but I've never run across rice bread before. Definitely whipping up a loaf/pan soon to try out!

Rachel Hallows said...

That philpy looks so good! I might have to try that some time.

panda with cookie said...

I like the look of that loaf. I need to channel the Johnp bread mojo at work these days.