Bread Salt Rising Bread by Juanita

posted by Juanita 03-19-100 6:11 PM

Salt Rising Bread
from Mrs. Margaret Howk's cookbook, Poplar Hall Recipes

1 cup milk, scalded
8 Tbs. white corn meal
1/4 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. soda
1/2 tsp. sugar

Pour milk from pan to 3-pint can* several times to cool slightly. Pour milk finally into can and add remaining ingredients. This mixture will be the consistency of thin batter cakes. Set this rising about 6 p.m.
Place can in very warm place as listed below in *note.

Next morning: Batter should be light, puffy and full of bubbles.

1 cup warm water
1/2 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. soda

Add first 3 ingredients to rising in can. Add enough flour, about 1 1/2 cups, to make a stiff batter. Place can for rising as you did the night before in a very warm place. Allow batter to rise to top of can.

In a bowl have:
4 cups flour
1 tsp. salt
1 Tbs. sugar
1/2 cup shortening

Cut and work in well the shortening into flour, salt and sugar in large mixing bowl. When starter in can has risen to top of can, pour from can into flour mixture in bowl. Add enough warm water as you are working mixtures together well to form a firm dough. (This may take about 3/4 cup of warm water. I like to use some of this water to rinse can to get all of starter from can.)

Knead dough with hands until smooth, shape into 3 loaves. Place in 3 greased loaf pans, 3 x 7-inches. Brush top of loaves with melted shortening. Cover, allow to rise to top of loaf pan in warm place.
Bake at 325 degrees for 5 or 10 minutes, then 350 for about 45 minutes.

*Note: A word about containers and rising temperature: For the first and second rising, I refer in the recipe to a 3 pint can. I use a heavy 3 pint aluminum can. I also have used a 3 pint stainless steel bowl. It's very important that this can or bowl fit into a second larger covered pan in which you can put warm water while batter rises. I place this all over a pilot light to keep mixture quite warm for both risings.

Now, for Juanita's notes . . . I don't have a gas stove so I have no pilot light. I put the initial starter in a ceramic or stainless bowl and cover it. I then set that bowl into another bowl that has water in it, and set it on a heating pad. I sometimes put the whole shebang into another even larger bowl just so the heating pad will stay around the one containing the water. I know you're thinking, "There's got to be an easier way!" I'm sure there is but this is the only method where my bread turns out well consistently.

Another of Juanita's notes: Salt rising bread isn't for the faint of heart and I had a number of failures before mine turned out as it should.

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