In a large mug or glass, pour about four fluid ounces of almost hot water-not too hot; it will kill the yeast. Add a small pinch of sugar and the package of yeast; stir and set aside to "work."
In a large mixing bowl place the salt, sugar and shortening. Add three cups of boiling water and stir until dissolved. Add the milk; stir.
Check the yeast; it should be bubbly and almost to the top of the glass. Add to the milk mixture in the large mixing bowl and stir well to distribute the yeast evenly.
Add flour a cup at a time, and stir well after each addition. When dough becomes too difficult to stir with the spoon, start balling it up with your hands. Add enough flour to keep your hands from sticking to the dough-don't over flour-it will make the bread hard! Keep the dough the consistency of a marshmallow. You won't need to use the whole bag of flour!
Then I knead this dough within the bowl (it will still come out perfectly!). Knead the dough until it is smooth and soft-about seven minutes. The sides of the bowl should be clean. You will know the dough is ready for the first raising, when you can poke your finger into it, and the hole springs back at you.
Grease the dough all over with a margarine greased hands; place in original bowl and cover with a paper towel. Set in a warm place - a temperature of 85 degrees is ideal. (I have turned the oven on and sat the bowl on top of the stove)
When the dough has doubled its bulk-punch down and knead again but don't add more flour. Divide dough into balls, for rolls; long "sausages," for a braid and place in greased baking pans or place formed dough into loaf pans. You can even roll some out to make a pizza, at this stage!
Cover again with paper towels and set in a warm place for the second raising.
When raised, bake in a 400 F oven for about twenty minutes, until golden brown. The bread will be done, when it makes a, "hollow" sound, when tapped on the bottom of the loaf with your knuckles.
On removing from the oven, grease all sides of the bread crust with butter, margarine or shortening. Leave to cool on a rack-if you can wait that long!