The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Looking for Squaw Bread

carrtje's picture

Looking for Squaw Bread

There use do to be a place in town that sold the most delicious squaw bread.  This bread had a tight crumb, and was really dark brown through and through. Dark, like mahagony, or Cherry wood.  It was a little sweet, but still very savory. Anyone have a good recipe?  

LindyD's picture

Try using the search function here - you'll find several recipes.

foolishpoolish's picture

My humble recipe:

Mine did not have the dark hue that typically comes from adding caramel colouring (which I believe you can get from KA)...simply add this to my recipe and you should have the colour you desire.




SusanWozniak's picture

One of the problems with doing an internet . . . or a cookbook . . . search for squaw bread is that the name is used for several different sorts of bread.


I have followed this recipe from The New York Times Bread and Soup Cookbook by Yvonne Young Tarr every time I wanted something quick for my family for years.  One big difference is that I would cook the bread in smaller batches, creating not three but six loaves.

5 C all purpose or unbleached white flour

2 T baking powder

1 1/4 t salt

1 1/2 T melted butter

2 C milk

oil for frying


Combine 4 C flour, baking powder and salt, sifting together into large bowl.  Melt butter and add to milk then add mixture, a little at a time, to the dry ingredients.  The book recommends using an electric mixer but I always used a wooden spoon.


The remaining flour is kneaded into the dough on a pastry board until all the flour is worked in.  Divide dough into pieces and  roll each piece flat.

Add 3 or 4 T oil to 10" skillet.  When oil is hot, add round of dough, frying until crisp on each side.  Serve hot.

Romanza's picture

Hi Susan, I think the recipe you have for Squaw Bread is actually called Indian Fry Bread here in the west.  We sometimes call them scones also but they aren't like the scones made in other areas of the country.  Squaw bread is more like a regular loaf of bread as in baked, not fried.  :-) 

It is really dark and yummy.  I love both but I'm sure the baked is much healthier.  ;-)

veggie's picture

Here is the recipe I have used many times. I think this is from The Bread Bible.


                                                   Squaw Bread


          2 ¼ cup                warm water

          1/3 cup                vegetable oil

           1/4 cup                honey

           1/4 cup                packed brown sugar

           1/4 cup                dark raisins

           1 ½ Tablespoons active dry yeast

                                      pinch of brown sugar

           3 - 3 ¼ cup          AP or Bread flour

            1/2 cup               Whole Wheat flour

           1 ½ cup               Medium Rye flour

            1/2 cup               instant dry milk

           2 ½ teaspoons     salt

                                     Cornmeal for dusting

           2 Tablespoons     butter for brushing



             In a food processor or blender, add ½ cup warm water, oil, honey, brown sugar, and raisins. Let sit 5 minutes and then puree. Add 1 ½ cups water and combine. Set aside raisin water.

             In a small bowl put ¼ cup warm water and yeast mixing till dissolved. Sprinkle pinch of brown sugar on top and allow to get foamy - about 10 minutes. Set aside.

             In a large bowl put in 1 cup of AP flour, all the WW and Rye flours, dry milk and salt. Add raisin water and yeast mixture and beat 1 minute. Add remainder of AP flour ½ cup at a time. Knead till dough starts to clear sides of bowl. Knead by dough hook 2 - 3 minutes till dough is smooth and springy. Dough can be kneaded by hand on a floured surface.

             Place dough into a greased bowl and cover to rise till doubled - about 1 ½ hours.  Gently deflate dough and turn onto a floured surface and divided dough into 4 portions. Shape each portion into a tight round or oval shape and place 2 each on greased and cornmealed baking sheets. Cover with plastic wrap and allow to double - about 45 minutes.

             Twenty minutes before baking preheat oven to 425 degrees if using a baking stone, or 375 degrees if not. With a sharp knife cut a ¼ inch deep cross on top of each loaf and brush with melted butter. Reduce oven to 375 degrees and bake loaves for 35 - 40 minutes. Bake till loaves are brown and crusty. Tapping bottom of done loaves should make a hollow sound.  Cool loaves and enjoy!!!!

cranbo's picture

BTW, the above recipe is from Beth Hensperger's "The Bread Bible", not Rose Levy Beranbaum's book of the same name. 

Interesting, this recipe is extremely similar to one published in May 1980 in the Los Angeles Times, attributed to Marilyn Martell of Port Hueneme, CA

The biggest difference is that there is more whole wheat flour (and slightly less AP flour) in Martell's recipe. 

Thanks for sharing!

kneading's picture

My family likes the one in Beth Henspergers book , "Baking Bread, Old and New Traditions". It also calls for raisins which my kids never wanted in bread. My solution was to secretively pulverize the raisins in the water resulting in a great flavor which we all enjoyed.