Amish friendship bread is often referred to as the chain letter of baking. A sourdough starter, together with a recipe for a cake-like bread, is passed on from one friend to another. You use a portion of the starter for your own friendship bread, and then pass it along to others. Curious to start your own chain? Then read below!
This starter is not only for the Amish Friendship Bread, but can also be used for other yeasted baked goods. In a small glass bowl, add ¼ cup warm water with 2 ¼ tsp active dry yeast. Allow the mixture to dissolve for about 10 minutes.
In another large glass bowl, combine 1 cup all-purpose flour with 1 cup sugar. Add 1 cup milk and the yeast mixture. Cover with plastic wrap and allow the mixture to stand until it becomes frothy. Once this happens, pour the mixture into a large Ziploc bag and seal properly. Let this mixture sit at room temperature. This is Day 1 of the starter.
For Days 2 to 5, gently mash the mixture once a day. On Day 6, add 1 cup each of flour, sugar, and milk. Mash again to mix well.
For Days 7 to 9, gently mash the mixture again once a day. On Day 10, pour the sourdough mixture in a non-metal bowl. Add ½ cup each of flour, sugar, and milk. Mix well with a wooden spoon. Divide the mixture into 1-cup portions, placing each portion in a separate Ziploc bag. Keep one bag for yourself, and share the rest with your friends, adding instructions. The cycle now starts over, and your single-cup sourdough starter begins at Day 1 again.
This recipe couldn’t be simpler. In a large bowl, combine 1 cup sourdough starter, 3 eggs, 1 cup oil, ½ cup milk, 1 cup sugar, ½ tsp vanilla extract, 2 tsp cinnamon, 1 ½ tsp baking powder, ½ tsp salt, ½ tsp baking soda, 2 cups flour, 2 small boxes of instant vanilla pudding mix, 1 cup raisins (optional), and 1 cup chopped nuts (optional). Mix well and pour batter into two greased loaf pans. Bake at 325°F (160°C) for one hour, or until a skewer comes out clean.
Why not make someone happy and share some [baking] love!