This rich, slightly sweet yeast bread was brought to the Colonies from England and subsequently became a favorite in the South. There are several tales as to its origin, the most popular being that Sally Lunn, an 18th-century woman from Bath, England, created this delicate cake-like bread in her tiny bakery for her prominent patrons' tea parties. The original Sally Lunns were baked as large buns, split horizontally and slathered with thick clotted cream.*
1 cup milk
1 (.25-ounce) package active dry yeast, or 2 1/4 teaspoons
1/2 cup butter or margarine, softened
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon salt
3 large eggs
4 cups all-purpose flour
- Heat milk in a saucepan over low heat until hot. Cool to 105° to 115°F (40° to 45°C). Dissolve yeast in warm milk; let stand 5 minutes.
- Beat butter at medium speed of an electric mixer until fluffy; gradually add sugar and salt, beating well. Add eggs and beat well. Add flour alternately with milk/yeast mixture, beginning and ending with flour, mixing well after each addition.
- Cover and let rise in a warm place, free from drafts, for 1 hour or until doubled in size.
- Beat at medium speed until smooth. Cover and let rise an additional 45 minutes or until doubled in size.
- Spoon batter into a lightly greased and floured 9-inch tube pan.
- Bake in a preheated oven at 350°F (175°C) for 35 to 40 minutes or until golden. Remove from pan and cool on a wire rack.
Makes 12 servings.
*According to THE FOOD LOVER'S COMPANION, 2nd edition, by Sharon Tyler Herbst. © Copyright Barron's Educational Services, Inc. 1995