Family Recipes: Now & Then

Selected recipes - some from family, friends and papers, ancestors and unknown sources. No guarantees: some of these are tried-and-true, others are just 'tried' recipes. #history #food

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Plain Bread - Flora Bancroft

Flora Gertrude Bancroft (Tilton)

1 envelope active dry yeast
2 TBL sugar
2 cups warm water or warm milk (about 115 degrees, F)
6 cups flour, more or less, divided
1 TBL salt
1 TBL fat/margarine
A little extra flour for dusting

Flora wrote:
“Mix stiff, knead until it feels just right. Springy.
Raise for about 2 hours.
Make out into loaves, and raise for 1 hour more.
Bake 1 hour at 375 degrees."

Daughter-in-law Elizabeth added to these directions:
"Preheat oven to375-400 degrees F, use 2 greased loaf pans, 9x5x3-inches.
In a large mixing bowl combine 2 cups flour, sugar,
salt, and yeast. Beating at low speed, add the water
and butter. Continue beating at high speed for 3 minutes.
Add 1/2 cup flour and beat 4 minutes longer.
Stir in 3 cups flour, or enough to make a soft dough.
Turn out onto a lightly floured surface.
Knead for about 8 to 10 minutes, or until dough is
smooth and elastic, adding a little more flour as necessary.
Place dough in a large buttered bowl, turning to butter top.
Cover with a clean towel and let rise for about 1 hour in a
warm place, free of drafts.
Punch dough down; knead until smooth.
Cut dough in half, cover with the mixing bowl, and let stand for
15 minutes longer.

Roll each half into a 12x9-inch rectangle.
Starting with the narrow edge, roll up, turning ends under to make
loaves to fit pans. Place rolls seam side down in greased loaf pans.
Cover pans with clean towel and let rise in warm place until double,
about 45 minutes.

Bake loaves in hot oven (375- 400° F) for 25 to 30 minutes, or until
loaves sound hollow when tapped with fingers.
Remove from pans to racks; brush with butter for a soft,
more flavorful crust, if desired." (From Betty Crocker)
Flora Bancroft (Tilton/Moore) was my great grandmother.
Her mother was Isabella Brinker (1846-1874) who married her father Peter Sanford Bancroft (1830-1916). PS Bancroft had already had a career as a professor of Greek and Latin and then had served in  the Union Army during the Civil War.
In 1865, he wed Isabella S. Brinker (1846-1874) and they began their family.

Isabella died when the children were ages 7 (Flora), 6 (Earl), and 5 (Grove) years old.

PS Bancroft did not remarry. After the war, he worked as the editor for a Butler (PA) newspaper.
In his later years, the father lived with his daughter Flora, her husband (William Tilton) and their son, Charles Tilton (my grandfather).

In 1916 Flora’s father died in May, and her husband a few months later, leaving behind my great grandmother and 13 year-old Charles (my grandfather). Flora Bancroft (Tilton), 1867-1949, this photo: about 1900.

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