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Leadership Recipe

Patience Lesson from Grandma DeChurch’s Sweet Bread Recipe

December 16, 2016
sweetbread long

Grandma DeChurch's Sweet Bread Recipe

Makes four 2lb loaves (large loaf pans)

  • Milk 1 pint
  • Butter (or Oleo) 1/4lb
  • Sugar 1 3/4 cup
  • Salt 1 tsp
  • Eggs (beaten) 6
  • Pure Vanilla (Or substitute for Imitation Vanilla but add 4 tbsp) 2 tbsp
  • Dry Yeast (follow package instructions) 2 pkgs
  • Flour 11 1/2 cups
  1. Mix yeast and warm water wait until foamy

  2. Warm milk and stir in butter and add in sugar, salt ,vanilla, beaten eggs and foamy yeast to lukewarm mixture.

  3. Slowly add flour mix and knead well. Brush top with butter and cover

  4. Let rise 1 ½ hours until double in size.

  5. Punch down and make loaves.

  6. Place into greased floured pans.

  7. Cover until dough raises again (almost to top of pan) between 1 ½ hours – 3 hours.

  8. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes.

When you are faced with a perplexing problem, issue or challenge, approach it logically asking yourself  – what are the steps that  I need to follow to make this work? And you follow through, work hard and do all that you believe is necessary to be successful and it still doesn’t work—what do you do next?

One of the most important lessons that I have learned during my career is patience. It is important to take a step back, look and listen, stop for a moment, go do something else, don’t think about it and let it come to you.

This also is an important concept when baking — it is a lesson that my brother and I learned when making  Grandma DeChurch’s  Sweet Bread recipe. It isn’t that complex of a recipe.  My brother Tom wanted to replicate Grandma’s recipe and yet  when he tried to make the bread, it did not come out the way he remembered it when we were children.  He went to such lengths to buy the same flour (Robin Hood) that Grandma used and thought it may be the oven or even the water. Nothing he did came close to the original recipe.

During my last visit to my brother and his family,  he announced that we were going to try the sweetbread recipe and I thought ‘oh my here we go again’… though once my brother gets something into his mind—you may as well go along with it because he will make it happen one way or another. Early on a Saturday morning, we followed the recipe that was done in the past.  We kneaded the dough and placed it in the large loaf pans and covered it to rise. When we looked at it 1 ½ hours later, my brother said it’s ready to go. I said no it’s not. It doesn’t look right.  At two hours he said it surely is ready now and I looked and again said it’s not ready.  Then we got busy and went out Christmas shopping. When we returned 3 hours later I looked at it again – it had risen to the level I remembered as a child and said it’s right now.  We baked it and yes finally, success! Grandma’s Sweet Bread recipe was alive and well — all we needed was  patience.

Whether you are tackling a new challenge at work or a simple old recipe, sometimes all you need is to take a step back, let it rest, have patience and it will come out the way you expected.


sweetbreadgrandma-dechurch recipe


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  • Reply Celeste cox December 16, 2016 at 7:14 pm

    Loved this it, is very true and the bread looks Delicious

  • Reply Sandra Capitena December 17, 2016 at 1:42 pm

    Cindy, this is a GREAT idea! I hope you will be continuing to post your reflections and some of the “old family recipes!”

  • Reply Pam Wensing January 24, 2017 at 5:08 pm

    OH, C A!!! This is wonderful that you are sharing this recipe, along with some guidance! I always loved Rosemary’s Grandmother’s Sweet Bread when she brought it to College! This is one of my Goals- to perfect bread making! Thanks!! I will follow you now!!

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