Wondering what we’re doing featuring an NPR article on baking bread? Well, this isn’t just any bread, it’s salt rising bread, and there’s no yeast. Yes, really — the bread rises thanks to the bacteria in the potatoes or cornmeal and the flour that goes into the starter. And this unique Appalachian recipe yields a surprising taste: cheese.
The taste is as distinctive as the recipe. Salt rising bread is dense and white, with a fine crumb and cheese-like flavor.
“Indeed it is, when at its best, as if a delicately reared, unsweetened plain cake had had an affair with a Pont l’Eveque cheese,” wrote J.C. Furnas in The Americans: A Social History of the US, 1587-1914.
Photo by Susan Brown and Jenny Bardwell