Contributed by: Elspeth Cahill Swope
(A down East recipe, with apocryphal anecdote attached)
1 1/2 c. water
1 1/2 T. shortening
1 tsp. salt
1 cake yeast
1/3 c. yellow corn meal
1/4 c. lukewarm water
1/3 c. molasses
4 to 4 1/2 c. flour (sifted)
Bring water to boil in saucepan; add salt. A surer way to keep it from lumping, I have found, is to mix the 1/2 c. water with the cornmeal and then stir into the 1 c. boiling salted water. Remove from heat; pour into a large bowl. Add shortening and molasses and cool to lukewarm. Add yeast to the 1/4 c. lukewarm water, blend well. Mix yeast into corn meal mixture; add the sifted flour. Knead until smooth (Use more flour if needed). Let rise until double in bulk. Punch down and mold into loaf. Place in (9x5x3) inch loaf pan for 1 loaf, or use several smaller bread loaf pans. Let rise until double in bulk. Brush top with melted butter; sprinkle with corn meal and salt. Bake 1 hour at 375 degrees, till golden brown and bottom crust gives a hollow sound when rapped. Makes excellent toast!
And now for that anecdote:
A crotchety old Main lumberjack and his wife, Anna, were forever arguing. Finally she got so mad at him that she refused to cook anything but corn meal mush with molasses poured over for all his meals.
Equally furious, he took those ingredients and made himself a loaf of bread, which he took with him for his noon meal in the woods. He shared this loaf with his buddies, who enjoyed it and asked him what he called it. His answer: "I call it Anna-dammer!"