Prep 6 hrs
Cook 1 hr 7 mins
My first bread recipe (from a 50's version of Joy of Cooking)and still my favorite. The family won't let me in to holiday gatherings without an ample supply (like half a loaf per person!)
- Combine yeast, 1/2 C water (105-115 degrees) and 1 t. sugar in bowl and allow to proof. (Until foamy, approximately 5 minutes, or about 10 for standard yeast.).
- Add egg, melted (but not hot) lard, salt and remaining sugar and water (105-115 degrees).
- Add 4 cups flour and beat (with a spoon or mixer) for one minute. Stir in remaining flour one cup at a time, until dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl and can be handled.
- Turn out on a floured surface and knead until dough is smooth and pliable, about 10 minutes .
- Shape into a ball and place into a greased mixing bowl.
- Turn dough over so greased side is on top, cover with a tea towel and allow to rise in a warm place until doubled in size.
- (Approx. 1-1 1/2 hours for rapid rise yeast, 2 hours or so for standard yeast.) Punch dough down, turn it over in the bowl, and allow to rise again until almost doubled in size.
- Punch down and shape into 3 large loaves, or (I prefer) 4 braided loaves.
- (Cut dough into 12 equal pieces, roll each into a long rope and braid them into 4 loaves.) Allow loaves to rise.
- Brush with egg wash (1 egg, 1 t. sugar, 1 t. water) or milk, if desired, and sprinkle with Aunt Jane's salt.
- Bake in 375°F oven for approximately 17 minutes. (braids) or 30-40 minutes (loaves) until brown on the outside and sounds hollow when tapped.
Excellent bread. I made the it into braids as suggested. I laid them side by side on a cookie sheet, brushed each with the egg wash and then sprinkled different toppings on each: poppy seeds, sesame seeds, parmesan cheese, and Krazy salt.
I love to cook but stay away from the pastry/baking area. However, those with the same phobia should try this recipe. Followed it to a T, using veg. crisco and all-purpose bread flour because I wasn't sure. Fantastic Bread!!!
YUUUUUUMMMMMMM! With just a bowl and spoon this turned out great! I make it every Saturday morning and by 1PM at least two loaves are gone. The only extras are cold milk and butter on the table next to my bread knife. The first batch I used Crisco instead of lard. The second batch I used sho nuff LARD and there was a definite difference. I am now LARDMAN! For cooking, not size - yet. Thanks for a great, easy recipe.