Bread for the Eucharist: Approved Recipes
Bread for the Eucharist is made only of wheat flour and pure water, without the addition of other ingredients. The bread can indeed look like real bread. “Following the example of Christ, the Church has always used bread and wine with water to celebrate the Lord’s Supper…” The nature of the sign demands that the material for the eucharistic celebration truly have the appearance of food.” GIRM # 281-283. (When communities begin using a form of bread which looks like bread, there might be a bulletin announcement to address this matter to explain that the recipe being used is in conformity to the norms established by the Congregation for Doctrine of the Faith.)
The following recipes fulfill the requirements of the Church for eucharistic bread. These breads are easily broken with very few crumbs. Nine inch round breads are recommended for Sunday Mass.
- 2 ½ cups whole wheat flour
- ½ cup unbleached white flour
- 1 ¼ cups warm water.
- Mix all the ingredients in a bowl. Knead very well for about 6 to 8 minutes, or until the dough is smooth and pliable.
- Roll the dough out into the desired size and shape, to about ¼ inch thick. Prick around the edge to help prevent the formation of air bubbles. No need to score.
- Bake on a not-stick-baking sheet in a 350-degree oven for about 16-17 minutes depending on the size of the breads. Two 9-inch rounds can be obtained from this recipe. Cool and wrap in plastic or foil, or put in a baggie. The bread may then be frozen or refrigerated until needed.
- 2 ½ cups wheat flour
- ½ cup unbleached white flour (put flour in freezer ahead of time)
- 1 ¼ cups cold Perrier water
- Mixed all the ingredients in a bowl. Knead very well for about 6 to 8 minutes, or until the dough is smooth and pliable. (May use small amounts of oil on hands to keep from sticking.)
- Roll the dough out into the desired size and shape, to about ¼ inch thick. Prick around the edge to help prevent the formation of air bubbles.
- Score bread into ¾ -inch pieces before baking. Bake on a non-stick baking sheet in a 350-degree oven for about 16-17 minutes, depending on the size of each bread. Two 9-inch rounds can be obtained from this recipe. (Cardinal Mahony prefers 7 ½ inch breads for the archdiocesan stational liturgies). Cool the bread and wrap in foil, or put in a baggie. The bread may then be frozen or refrigerated until needed.
- For 70 communicants, use ¼ cup whole-wheat flour to 2/3 cup unbleached white flour. The mixture of flour should be kept in an airtight container in the freezer and used while cold. (The cold flour helps prevent a separate crust from forming.)
- Use one cup of the flour mixture to approximately ½ cup of naturally effervescent water (Perrier, for example). The water should be refrigerator cold.
- Quickly mix the flour and water together with a fork until all the flour is moist. Form dough into a smooth ball. Usually more flour needs to be sprinkled on the surface of the dough to prevent stickiness.
- Gently flatten the ball of dough into a circular loaf about ½ to ¾ inch thick. If necessary, turn any uneven edges underneath.
- Place un-scored loaf on a lightly oiled baking sheet.(Use Pam and wipe off excess.)
- Place in a preheated oven at 425 degrees.
- After approximately 12-15 minutes the top crust should have raised slightly. Pick the crust with a toothpick in several places, turn the loaf over and continue to bake about five minutes. (This gives evenness to the top of the loaf.)
- Turn the loaf right side up again and continue to bake until the crust is very lightly browned, about 10-15 minutes more, for a total of 25-30 minutes. Baking time when using more than 1-1/2 cups of flour may need to be extended.
Resources: Bishops Committee on The Liturgy, The Sacristy Manual