This recipe is a favorite on many vessels in the windjammer fleet.
2 tablespoons (2 packages) dry yeast
1/2 tablespoon salt
8 cups white all-purpose flour
3 cups warm water
2 tablespoons soft butter
1 cup molasses
Combine the yeast, salt, and flour in a large bowl. Stir in all the remaining ingredients, reserving 1/4 cup water. Add more water if needed. Knead for 10-15 minutes. Oil the bowl and the top of the dough, cover, and place in a warm place to rise for 30-45 minutes, until doubled. Preheat oven to 375°. Grease 3 loaf pans. Punch down the dough, form three loaves and place them in the loaf pans. Cover and allow to rise again until nearly doubled. Place the pans in the oven, throw a cup of water over hot stones set in a pan in the bottom of the oven (or toss 3 to 4 ice cubes into a pan in the bottom of the oven) to generate steam and quickly close the oven door. Bake until deep brown (around 45 minutes).