Updated: Feb 19
Recipe by Bill Lewis
Scald 1.5 cups of milk; pour it into a large bowl and add 3/4 cup of sugar, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 4 ounces of butter. Stir until well blended and the sugar and salt are dissolved.
Dissolve 2 packets of yeast in 6 tablespoons of warm water; add to the milk mixtures; stir in 1 beaten egg. 1 cup each of raisins and currants, 1/2 cup chopped candied fruit peel, 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg, cinnamon and cardamom. Add about 2.5 cups of flour and beat until smooth; then add more flour (about 3 cups) and knead by hand until the dough forms a ball and is quite elastic in nature.
Form the dough into a ball and coat with butter - greasing the bowl as well. Cover the bowl and allow the dough to rise until it is doubled in bulk (about an hour). Set in a warm place that is free from drafts.
Press the dough with with the tip of your finger and if the dent remains, the dough has risen sufficiently. Punch the dough down and form into two loaves.
Place the two loaves into two buttered tins and cover with cloths or plastic wrap, and allow the dough to rise until it is again doubled in bulk. This will probably take about a half to 3 quarters an hour.
When the dough has risen to double the size, bake in an over that has been heated to 375F for approximately 40 minutes.
The bread should be sufficiently baked within this time and a good test is to tap the bottom of the loaf, and if it sounds hollow, it is done.
Turn the loaves out of the pans and cool on a rack.
After they are completely cooled, store the loaves in air-tight packaging.
Plastic bags are very good, or heavy-duty aluminum foil is also very good.