Standard White Bread, Homemade Bread

1 package active dry yeast
1/4 cup warm water
2 cups milk
2 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon shortening
1/2 teaspoons salt
6 cups all-purpose flour

Heat the shortening, salt, water, sugar and milk in a saucepan until it is warm (115° F or so - shortening should be just melted) - remember to stir constantly Pour this heated mixture into a good sized mixing bowl.

Stir in two cups of the flour and beat well. Now add the yeast and stir until mixture is smooth. Continue to add flour until a spoon will no longer stir.

Pour out mixture onto lightly floured surface. Knead in enough of the remaining flour to make the dough moderately stiff. Shape the dough into a ball. Place ball into a lightly greased bowl and cover and let rest in a warm place until the dough doubles in volume. (This should take about 1 hour and 15 minutes.)

Punch down the dough ball on a lightly floured surface. Divide the dough in half and shape it into two balls. Again, cover the dough and let rest (this time for about 10 minutes.) Meanwhile, grease two 8X4X3-inch loaf pans. Shape the two balls into loaves and place them in the pans.

Brush some melted butter onto the exposed surface of the loaves. Cover and let rise yet again until the loaves double in size. (Takes about 45 minutes to one hour.)

Bake the loaves in a 375° F degree oven for about 45 minutes or until top is sufficiently browned and tapping on the top of the loaf yields a hollow sound. It is best to cool on a wire rack to avoid condensation.

This recipe will make two loaves. Honestly it would be too much trouble to make only one loaf.

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