Put the oatmeal, honey, salt and butter in a large mixing bowl. Add boiling water and mix together. Let stand for 45 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Following the yeast package directions, add the yeast to lukewarm water, and let it soften for about 5 minutes. Add the yeast mixture to the oats and honey mixture. Mix in the milk and stir well.
Stir in the flour, 1/2 cup at a time. When the dough is too stiff to stir, pour it out onto a well-floured surface and knead it firmly, adding a little flour if necessary. Knead it until the dough is smooth and elastic (about 6-8 minutes). Form the dough into a ball. Place the dough into a large greased bowl, coating the entire ball of dough.
Cover with a damp cloth and place in a warm, cozy, humid place. (I put it in a cool oven, with a small saucepan of hot tap water sitting on the bottom of the oven.) Let rise for about 1 1/2 hours, or until the dough has doubled in bulk.
Punch down the dough and split in half. Spread the dough into two greased loaf pans, coating the dough as before, and cover with a damp cloth, and let rise for about an hour in a warm, cozy, humid place.
Bake at 350 F for 35-40 minutes, or until loaves sound hollow when tapped. Cool on a bread rack for about ten minutes.
* A yeast bread for people who like oatmeal. Makes 2 loaves.
* Kneading is difficult to describe in words, but many cookbooks have pictures. The idea is to exercise the dough and work some more flour into it. Bread freezes very well; give it an hour or so to thaw, then heat it up at 350 degrees F. for about ten minutes.
* Instant and quick-cooking oatmeal is not satisfactory in this recipe. Besides the ubiquitous Quaker oats, you can use any commercial rolled oats or steel-cut oats. If you use the steel-cut oats, then soak for 1 hour in step 1.