Thursday, September 9, 2010

Amish Friendship Bread

Since last weekend was Labor Day and the man was in Las Vegas at a bachelor party (no comment!!) I didn't do a whole lot of note-worthy cooking. I did however make my first ever Amish Friendship Bread. Never heard of it? Neither had I until a co-worker asked me if I'd be interested in trying it out. 

Basically, it's baking chain-mail!

First, you get a 1-cup starter of batter from a friend. If you don't have a starter, you can make one yourself. I found a basic Amish Friendship Bread starter recipe on just in case.

Next, you follow the recipe below for the next ten days and when you are done, you end up with three 1-cup starters to pass onto friends and two deliciously-sweet loaves of cinnamon bread.  Yum!
The Starter

The Recipe
  • Do not use metal spoon or bowl for mixing
  • Do not refrigerate mix
  • If air gets into the bag, let it out
  • It is normal for the batter to rise, bubble and ferment
Day 1   This is the date written on the bag; do nothing
Day 2   Squeeze the bag
Day 3   Squeeze the bag
Day 4   Squeeze the bag
Day 5   Squeeze the bag
Day 6   Add 1 cup of flour, 1 cup of sugar, and 1 cup of milk. You may need to transfer to a large ziplock   bag and squeeze until mixed. (If already in a gallon ziplock, keep it as is.)
Day 7   Squeeze the bag
Day 8   Squeeze the bag
Day 9   Squeeze the bag
Day 10  Place batter from bag into a large bowl and add 1 cup of flour, 1 cup of sugar, and 1 cup of milk to the batter. Mix with a wooden spoon or spatula. Pour three 1-cup starters into ziplock bags. Write the date on each bag. Give the starters to three friends with a copy of the instructions.

With the remaining 1-cup starter, add the following to the batter:
1 cup oil        
1 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla   
3 eggs
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 large box vanilla pudding mix
2 tsp cinnamon
2 cups flour
1/2 cup milk

Mix all and pour into two large loaf pans that have been greased and dusted with cinnamon and sugar. Sprinkle cinnamon and sugar on the top of the batter before it goes into the oven as well.
Bake at 325 degrees for 45-60 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.
Optional: Add 1 cup chopped nuts and/or 1/2 cup raisins.
Delicious! And, it goes great with coffee.

Okay, I know you may be thinking that allowing all of the ingredients to sit out on the counter to ferment can't be safe, but people have been making this exact recipe for years and I didn't get sick, so I think it is good to go.

Happy baking!

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