One of the things we Midwesterners remember most fondly from childhood is Brownberry Bread, made from a recipe that includes cracked wheat, unbleached wheat flour, and a touch of vinegar and whey. It's a distinctly old-fashioned, dense bread. Not only does it actually have flavor, it keeps well in the fridge, making it both convenient and nutritious. We credit this bread with instilling a life-long love with complex flavor and natural ingredients, and nothing means home to us like a loaf in the fridge.
It's not available on the West Coast, so we've gone to extremes to get it, begging family to send a loaf in times of need, and checking an unbelievably heavy Box of Carbohydrates on every plane trip back to the Brownberryless West.
On our last trip, we were stunned to learn that the company that now makes Brownberry (Arnold on the East Coast, Orowheat in the West) decided to discontinue it in favor of a lighter, sweeter loaf. In one moment, our happy memories of youth were destroyed along with our turkey sandwiches. Oh, we thought, they don't know what they're getting into. The Midwest is going to revolt.
And, we are proud to report, our people did not let us down.
According to that article, the company that makes the bread had to hire temps to handle the influx of angry phone calls. The manager of the plant where the bread was made, in fabulously named Oconomowoc, Wisconsin, was accosted as he walked out to his car.
All that, for this:
Yum. Being at home just wasn't the same without Brownberry Bread... and we're looking forward to re-instituting the Box of Carbohydrate tradition this year.
images by Jonathan Bean