Saturday, December 22, 2012

Amish Friendship Bread

One of Mark's favorite things I would make for him before we got married was Amish Friendship Bread. I haven't made it in over a year though because having to deal with the starters that you're supposed to give out to people can be a little daunting, not to mention a good way to get people annoyed at you.

I mean, I've always loved receiving the starters from people, but it does tend to get a little much after a while. Lately every time I would mention making Amish bread to someone they would make a joke about not wanting a starter when it came time to make the bread. Since hubby was really craving the bread (and I like to satisfy my man's cravings ; )....) I decided to do some research to see if there was a way to make it without having to take out the 4 cups to make the starters...

Here's what I came up with:

First I had to make the starter:
1 package of dry yeast
1/2 c. warm water
1 c. flour
1 c. sugar
1 c. warm milk

Soften the dry yeast with the warm water for about 10 minutes. In a non-metal bowl with a wooden spoon combine the sugar and flour. Slowly stir in the milk and dissolved yeast. Cover loosely and let stand. The mixture should become bubbly. This is considered day 1. On day 2 pour into a gallon ziploc bag and "mush" the bag.

Day 3: Mush the bag
Day 4: Mush the bag
Day 5: Mush the bag
Day 6: Add 1c. flour, 1 c. milk, 1 c. sugar to mixture and mush the bag
Day 7: Mush the bag
Day 8: Mush the bag
Day 9: Mush the bag
Day 10: Baking Day


Pour the mixture into a non-metal bowl and mix with a wooden spoon. Add 1 1/2 c. flour, 1 1/2 c. sugar and 1 1/2 c. milk into the bowl and mix.

At this point you have to decide if you want to take out the the starters to give to people or if you want to double the recipe so that you only have one starter for yourself.

If you want to hand out starters then measure out 4 cups of the mixture and pour 1 cup into 4 different ziploc bags. Those are the starters. Traditionally you would keep 1 for yourself and hand the remaining 3 out to your friends along with the recipe.

If you don't want to do that then all you need to do is scoop out one cup of the mixture and put it into a ziploc bag to keep one starter for yourself. Then split the remaining mixture into 2 batches. All the research I did said you should have about 3 cups in each mixture at this point... I had a little bit more than that but I still used the recipe and it turned out great.

Now that you have your two batches just add the following ingredients to each bowl:

3 eggs
1/2 c. of milk
1 c. oil
1 c. sugar
2 c. flour
2 tsp of cinnamon
1/2 tsp of baking soda
1/2 tsp of salt
1 1/2 tsp of baking powder
1 large box of instant vanilla pudding mix

(If you had taken out the traditional 4 cups then you would use the same ingredients above for just the one batch.)
My baking mess... Sugar and Flour always seems to explode on me when I bake...

Once you've mixed all the ingredients together grease your loaf pans. (I was able to fill 6 small loaf pans and 1 medium loaf pan from my two batches.) After you grease your pans take a sugar/cinnamon mixture (about 1/2 c. sugar and 1 1/2 tsp of cinnamon) and dust the bottom of the pans. Pour the batter evenly in to your pans and then sprinkle the tops with the cinnamon/sugar.

Bake the loafs for about 1 hour at 325 degrees. Let it sit for about 10 minutes before popping it out onto a plate.

I used some of my bread to hand out to our neighbors for Christmas gifts. Unfortunately I also experienced my first "First Married Couple" fail... my neighbors wouldn't answer their doors!
..I'm pretty sure they were home too. Hmm.... I thought I was on friendly terms with all of my new neighbors??? 
Maybe I'll try to re-deliver them today!

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