1 cup whole milk
2 tbsp. granulated sugar
1-1/2 tsp. salt
1/3 cup white corn meal
1 cup lukewarm water
4-1/4 cups sifted all-purpose flour
2 tbsp. shortening
Scald milk. Remove from fire and stir in 1 tablespoon granulated sugar, the salt, and cornmeal. Mix thoroughly and turn into a 2-quart jar or pitcher; cover, and set in a pan of water which is hot to the hand, or *120º F. Let the mixture stand, in the hot water, in a warm place for 6 to 7 hours, or until it has fermented.
When the gas escapes freely, stir in the water mixed with 1 tablespoon granulated sugar. Then sitr in 2 cups sifted flour and beat thoroughly. Return the jar to the hot water bath *(120º) and let the sponge rise until it is very light and full of bubbles. Turn the sponge at once into a large, warm mixing bowl and gradully stir in 2-1/4 cups sifted white bread flour, or just enough to make a stiff dough. Divide the dough in half, shape into loaves, and place in bread pans that have been generously greased with shortening. Now brush the loaves with 2 tablespoons shortening melted just enough to spreading consistency. Cover the two loaves with a light, clean, dry towel or double thickness of cheesecloth, and let them rise in a warm place until it reaches double original size. Bake in oven at 375º F. for 10 minutes only, then lower the heat to moderate (350º) and continue baking for 25 minutes longer.
*(note)The sponge and dough of salt risin' bread require a higher temperature for rising than yeast mixtures. After the rising, the temperature of 120º F. should be kept as steady as possible. Home made salt-risin' bread is not so light as yeast bread is, but is moist and crumbly.