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  • Writer's picturejosie

For All People: Leigh's Katy Bread

Our theme this Advent is "For All People"—from the angels' message in Luke 2:10. The birth of Jesus is celebrated in cultures and traditions around the world...and in our own homes and families! Follow each week's worship, welcome, and wonder on our Virtual Advent page.

Pandemic bakers, you're in for a treat! Here's a recipe that will pair well with chili or another hearty winter meal, from Leigh McAfee, one of our beloved Texans:

My favorite family tradition growing up was the day each year that my mom spent baking loaves of "Katybread" — my paternal grandmother's award-winning raised cornbread recipe. Once it turned dark we would pile in the car and drive around to friends' homes delivering bread and singing a Christmas carol or two. It's a tradition that I've continued on my own and with friends for many years in NoVa and remains my favorite day of the holiday season.

I can't wait to try this tasty cornbread. The recipe lends itself to making two loaves: one to share with a neighbor, one to enjoy as a gift from Leigh (and her grandmother before her) to us. She concludes:

Katy died before I was born so it feels particularly special to have a tradition that honors her. She won a contest in the Fort Worth Star Telegram with this recipe. I usually deliver it the week before Christmas, like a little Advent cheat to sing Christmas carols early. :)

Thank you, Leigh, for sharing your story and recipe!

Katy Bread


  • 2 cups scalded milk

  • 1 cup yellow cornmeal

  • 1 tsp. salt

  • 1/2 cup sugar

  • 1/2 cup shortening

  • 1 pkg. yeast

  • 1/4 lukewarm water

  • 2 eggs

  • 4-4 1/2 cups flour


  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Grease 2 large or 3 small loaf pans with crisco.

  • Pour scalded milk over cornmeal, salt, sugar and shortening. Cool to lukewarm (85 degrees).

  • Soften yeast in lukewarm water.

  • Beat eggs and 2 cups flour into milk mixture.

  • Add yeast, mixing well.

  • Stir in enough flour to make heavy batter, about 2 cups.

  • Cover and let rise until double in bulk (1 hour).

  • Stir down and stir into pans half full. Cover and let rise until double in bulk again.

  • Bake 20 minutes at 400 degrees.

  • Remove from oven and brush with melted butter. Makes 2 large or 3 small loaves.


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