Someone asked for a recipe for salt-rising bread. I haven't actually tried
this, but I believe this recipe has been in my family for hundreds of
years. The instructions that I have were written down by my aunt about 50
years ago. My mother tells me that this stuff really does smell awful
while its fermenting. My father used to make it back when they were first
married during the depression. They would set it on the furnace in the
hall of their apartment house, and apparently everyone in the apartment
house complained about it. But my father claimed there was no better
The secret of success with this bread is to keep it very warm so that it
can rise properly.
Peel and slice one medium sized potato thin and add it to 1 quart of
boiling water in which has been put 1 Tablespoon of sugar, 2 Tablespoons of
cornmeal, and 1 teaspoon of salt. Keep the mixture warm overnight, 95-100
F. The next morning it should smell like beer. Drain out the potato (I
assume this means keep the liquid, get rid of the potato) and add 1 cup of
scalded sweet milk. Stir flour in until stiff, like muffin mix. Keep
warm, 100-110 F, until it rises. Then add 1 pint warm water, 1/2 cup
sugar, 1 teaspoon salt, 1 Tablespoon lard, and flour until it is the
consistency of bread dough. Do not knead.
Put into bread pans, let rise to double in bulk, and bake in a moderate,
375 F, oven 45 minutes to an hour. The dough must never be allowed to
Joy of Cooking also has recipes for salt-rising bread. I have no idea how
many loaves the above recipe makes. It sounds like it might make half a
dozen loaves. I'd be very interested in your results if you try this.