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Jewish Corn Bread

I'm not talking about what they call corn-rye, which is, as far as I can tell, rye bread with cornmeal incorporated into it. I'm talking about something that's getting harder and harder to find even in NYC, much less Los Angeles. Corn bread is not made with any corn. (Corn in the Eastern European vernacular can refer to any grain.) This is a VERY dense, chewy, crusty, sour rye bread, made in large, round loaves. It is rye bread squared: extremely moist, heavy crumb that is almost grey in color, and a thick, yet crunchy crust that you have to tear with your teeth. In NY Jewish bakeries, it is known simply as corn bread. It of course resembles NY Jewish rye bread, but is unique in weight, moisture, flavor, and texture. Anybody remember it? Anybody know where to get it in Los Angeles?

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  1. That's a great question.

    I have no idea what the answer is, but I love the fact that someone else will. That's the best thing about the boards.

    If I didn't have Chowhound to guide me, I'd try Diamond's on Fairfax, only because they seem to do rye bread so well. They might know what you are after.

    1. Victor Benes bakeries (inside Gelsons) have corn rye, usually very good.

      1 Reply
      1. re: PayOrPlay

        Don't be mad? Trader Joe's JCR, thin and very dense.

      2. Guys --

        My opening statement -- "I'm NOT talking about what they call corn-rye..." Corn-rye has cornmeal in it. It's an attempt to emulate corn bread designed by someone who did not realize that there is no corn in corn bread (an understandable mistake). Corn-rye tastes good, but it's easy to find, and it's not what I'm after. If you remember and/or understand what New-York/Jewish corn bread is and know where to find it in L.A., then... HELP!!!

        1 Reply
        1. re: Sklarman

          Corn rye does not have cornmeal in it - it's the cornmeal on the bottom. It's a sourdough rye, made also with "clear" flour, that's silky, crusty, tangy. Divine.

        2. My parents were from NYC and loved the rye bread from the Beverlywood Bakery on Pico Blvd. near Doheny. Sure, its called a "corn rye" but it doesn't have corn meal in it, only around it. Its a dense grayish color, crusty, chewy, sour rye bread which sounds what you're looking for but without any corn meal added to it. If you ask them to cut it thickly for you, you'll have that dense, chewy bread. The thinner slices just don't have as much condensed sour flavor. My father used to call their corn rye, "corn bread" but maybe its not exactly what you're looking for. Maybe the bread was called that in NY and no where else. After all what they call "gravy" in some areas of the east coast is spaghetti sauce to us on the west coast. I'm sure that if you went there or called there, they'd make a few loaves for you just the way you want them. Ask them not omit the corn meal completely perhaps. And if they won't do it, there's a bakery on Robertson Blvd, just north of the 10 freeway who might arrange to make the loaves for you. Good luck with your search and if you find this bread, please let me know where you found it.
          By the way, Amazon.com sells "Levy's Unseeded Jewish Corn Bread." I found it by typing in "Jewish Corn Bread".. the sale goes through Netgrocer.com.

          4 Replies
          1. re: AnnieAmie

            I think you shoud try Diamond Bakery on Fairfax just north of Beverly. They might have it.

            1. re: jlq3d3

              And when I last checked (admittedly,moe than a few years ago) Diamond Bakery was the supplier in LA to trader Joe's for their corn rye. Sadly, they slivced it thin for that.

              For a true corn rye experience, go to Daimond Bakery and get it sliced THICK. Then take a slice, spread it well with butter - and eat it.

              If you want to get fancy you can add a slice of swiss cheese (or havarti) on top of the butter, fresh cracked pepper - and then eat it extra joyfully. So good with a cup of black coffee. : )

            2. re: AnnieAmie

              In my Jewish childhood in Detroit in the 60s we also had the same "corn bread." I've never gone looking for it here, though.

              There's a very authentic Jewish bakery on Ventura blvd in Sherman Oaks (name?) that might have it.

              1. re: hpcat

                Hmm... the only jewish bakery in the valley that I know of, with good bread, is Bea's.

                http://beasbakery.com

                Maybe that's who you were thinking of?

            3. You might try the chorny khleb from Blackjack Market on Sherman and Bellaire... it's not "black bread" like pumpernickel but sour, sour, SOUR, and VERY dense, almost spongy, with the required crust.

              It's an Armenian market.