Saturday, October 17, 2009



The history of Amish Friendship Bread is vague, it typifies the strong Amish community. The term “Friendship” relates to the custom of sharing some of the bread starter with your friends, like a food chain letter. The base of the bread recipe is actually a type of sourdough starter. Airborne yeast ferments the mixture, which was a staple to early pioneers in bread-making; this was before you could buy active dry yeast at the grocery store. The starter, which is the leavening agent, can be used to make pancakes, breads and cakes. 
Important Notes: DO NOT use metal bowls or spoons for mixing. DO NOT refrigerate.  If air gets into the bag, open it a little and squeeze it out.  It is normal for the batter to rise, bubble and ferment.

*** You can freeze the starter at any point in the process, when reactivating allow for 3 hours to thaw ***

Amish Friendship Bread Starter

Always use a wooden spoon for stirring the starter. Never use a metal spoon.
1 (.25 ounce) package active dry yeast
1/4 cup warm water (110 degrees F)
3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, divided
3 1/2 cups granulated sugar, divided
3 1/2 cups warm milk (110 degrees F), divided

In a small bowl, dissolve yeast in water. Let stand 10 minutes.  In a 2 quart glass or ceramic container or gallon ziploc bag add 1 cup flour and 1 cup sugar.  Slowly stir in 1 cup milk and dissolved yeast mixture with the flour and sugar. Cover loosely and let stand at room temperature until bubbly.


DAY 1 Do Nothing
DAY 2-5 Stir or Mush bag
DAY 6 Add to the bowl: 1 cup flour, 1 cup sugar, 1 cup milk
DAY 7-9 Stir or Mush bag
DAY 10 Follow the directions below

1. Add 1 ½ cups flour, 1 ½ cups sugar, 1 ½ cups milk

2.  Measure batter by the cup and separate into 1 gallon ziplock bags.  I had 7 cups, so 7 bags.  Keep a starter kit for yourself if you'd like and give the others to friends with a copy of the directions.  Mark the bags with date and Day 1.

3. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.

4. Use this recipe  or any of the ones below with your remaining 1 cup of batter.  To the remaining batter in bowl add: 3 eggs 1 cup oil ½ cup milk 1 cup sugar 2 tsp cinnamon ½ tsp vanilla 1 ½ tsp baking powder ½ tsp baking soda ½ tsp salt 2 cups flour 1 large box or 2 small boxes of vanilla instant pudding mix 6. Grease two loaf pans. Pour batter into pans. Bake for one hour.

***Print these directions to pass along with your bag of starter***


1-1/2 cup sugar
3/4 cup oil
1 tsp vanilla
2 cups flour
2 tsp cinnamon
2 eggs
1 cup Amish batter *
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
Fold in by hand :
1 cup chopped nuts
3 cups diced fresh apples
Pour into 2 well greased loaf pans. Bake at 375 degrees F 50-60 minutes.

In a bowl, combine and mix well:
1 cup oil
1/2 cup milk
3 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup Amish Batter *
In a separate bowl combine the following dry ingredients and mix well:
2 cups flour
1- 1/2 cups sugar
1-1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 - (5.1 oz) box instant chocolate pudding
3 heaping TBS of cocoa
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup pecans or walnuts
Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients. Mix and pour into two well greased and sugared bread pans. Bake at 325 degrees for 1 hour.

2/3 cup shortening
1- 2/3 cup sugar
3 eggs
1 cup Amish batter *
1 tsp vanilla
Beat 2 minutes on medium speed.
2/3 cup cocoa
1-1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
2 cups flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
Add flour mixture to batter alternately with 3/4 cup cold water. Beat 1 minute on medium speed. Mix in by hand 1cup chopped nuts. Pour into greased and floured 9x12 pan. Bake at 375 degrees F for 30-40 minutes.

Combine in small bowl and set aside.
1-1/2 cup applesauce
3 tsp baking soda
Cream together:
3/4 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup shortening
1 cup Amish batter *
1 egg
Beat 2 minutes on medium speed. Add applesauce mix alternately with 4 1/2 C. flour and 1 tsp baking powder. Mix until well blended. Fold in 2 cups (12 oz.) of chocolate chips. Drop batter on cookie sheet. Bake at 350 degrees F for 8-10 minutes.

Omit vanilla pudding from original recipe; add 2/3 cup GF International Coffee (I like SuisseMocha) and chocolate chips. For cream cheese spread, beat 8 oz cream cheese with a packet of serving size Cappucino mix and 1/3 cup sugar.

1 cup Amish batter *
2 eggs
1-1/2 c. milk
2 tsp sugar
1/2 cup flour
1-1/2 c. cornmeal
Combine in large bowl. Beat at medium speed for 2 minutes.
1/4 cup oil
3/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp baking powder
Mix well. Pour in well-greased 9" pan. Bake at 425 degreesF 25-30 minutes.

1 cup Amish batter *
2 cups flour
3/4 cup oil
1 tsp baking soda
2 tsp baking powder
1 cup sugar
3 eggs
1-1/2 tsp cinnamon
2 tsp vanilla
Stir Well.
1 cup nuts, chopped
1 cup apples, chopped
1 cup raisins, or
1 cup blueberries
Mix Well. Put into muffin tins well greased if not using liners. Sprinkle with topping on each
muffin and bake at 350 degrees F for 15-20 minutes or until done.
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup flour
1/4 cup margarine
Mix well and sprinkle over tops of muffins before baking.

Combine in large bowl:
1 cup flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
Combine in smaller bowl:
2 TBS oil
2 cups Amish batter *
1/2 cup milk (plus/minus 1/4 cup)
1 egg
Add ingredients of smaller bowl to ingredients of large bowl and mix on medium speed.
Spoon batter onto greased griddle.
Prepare batter for pancakes except increase oil to 1/4 cup.

2 cups flour
1 cup milk
1 cup Amish batter *
Combine and let set at room temperature overnight or 10-12 hours. Stir down.
3 t. sugar
1 egg
1/2 cup shortening
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
Add into small bowl all at once to stir down. Pour dough out on well-floured board. Knead until no longer sticky. Roll out to 1/2" thickness in a rectangle shape. Brush dough with soft butter.
1/4 cup sugar
1 TBS cinnamon
1/2 cup crushed nuts
Sprinkle cinnamon-sugar mixture over dough. Beginning at wide side, roll up, and seal seam.
Cut 1" slices. Place on well-greased cookie sheet. Let rise 30 minutes. Bake at 350 degrees F 30-35 minutes.

Add to the basic bread recipe the following ingredients:
3 medium carrots shredded
1/2 c raisins
1/2 c coconut
1/2 c chunky style applesauce
1 tblsp cinnamon
1 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp clove
1/2 c chopped walnuts
Baked it in a bundt pan until a wooden toothpick comes out clean. When cool, frost with cream cheese frosting. Very moist and tasty.

For new twist to the basic recipe add 1 1/2 cups finely chopped rhubarb. Fill muffin tins 2/3 full. Add 1 tsp. of the following topping: 1/2 cup brown sugar, 1/2 cup chopped nuts and 1tsp. cinnamon. Bake muffins for 20 minutes @ 325 degrees.

1 Cup starter
2 eggs
1 Tbsp molasses
3/4 cup butter
2 tsp vanilla
Mix well. Sift together:
2 Cups flour
1 cup sugar
1 tsp salt.
Chocolate Chip Option: Add 1 extra cup flour. Add 2 cups chocolate chips and 1 cut nuts(optional)
Oatmeal Option: Add 2 cups oatmeal, 1 tsp nutmeg, 2 tsp cinnamon, 1 cup chocolate chips and 1 cup raisins.
Bake at 375 for 10 to 13 minutes.

Dry Ingredients:
3-3/4 cups flour
1-1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp baking soda
1 stick (1/2 cup) plus 1 TBS oleo/margarine
Blend dry ingredients with oleo until the oleo is well cut in.
3/4 cup milk or buttermilk
1-1/2 cups of Amish starter *
Knead, roll, and cut. Place on greased baking sheet. Bake at 375 degrees F for 20 to 30 minutes. Makes 1-1/2 dozen biscuits.

1 cup sugar
1/2 cup oil
1 tsp salt
1 - 1/2 cups warm water
1 cup Amish batter
6 cups bread flour
Mix all ingredients thoroughly. Oil bottom & sides of large bowl & put bread dough in. Let stand overnight at room temperature. In morning, punch dough down 4-5 times and divide into 3 equal balls. Kneed each ball 8-10 times and put into 3 greased and floured loaf pans. Brush tops with oil and cover with oiled foil. Let stand 4-5 hours or all day. (If dough has not risen well, put small pan of water on bottom rack in oven, heat to 200 degrees, turn off oven. Put dough on top rack for 1-2 hours.) Bake at 350 degrees for 30-40 minutes. (Cover with foil after lightly browned.)

1 cup flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp baking powder
Combine all above ingredients in a large bowl. With spoon make well (dent) in center.
2 eggs
1 cup Amish batter *
1/4 cup oil
Beat 2 minutes on medium speed. Pour egg mixture into flour mixture all at once. Stir and add additional flour a tablespoon at a time until dough cleans sides of bowl. Pour on floured board. Roll 1/2" thick. Cut out biscuit using circle cutter. Place biscuits close together on greased cookie sheet. Brush tops of biscuits with melted butter. Cover, let rise in warm place for 30 minutes. Bake at 350 degrees F for 15-20 minutes.

Before I start the Amish bread (day 10 - Armchair World), I get my pans ready and make the streusel:
1 stick butter or margarine at room temp.
2/3 C packed brown sugar
2/3 C flour cinnamon - as much as you like
Put the ingredients together. (1 C chopped pecans are optional.) This will make approx. 2 cups. If you like a little more, increase the sugar and flour to 1C each.
Make your Amish bread according to directions. Put approx. 1-1/2 C batter in the bottom of each pan and spread into the corners. (Batter will not be runny - sort of a heavy batter.) Top with 1/2 C streusel, remaining batter and remaining streusel.
Bake as directed.

I used the basic mix, omitted the cinnamon and used two small boxes of cheese cake pudding instead of the vanilla and I added a small pack of cream cheese and 1/4 cup more milk. You also need a can of Cherry pie filling , 1/2 can per loaf. After putting the batter into the pans dab teaspoons of cherries on top of them and swirl around with spoon to mix in the cherries. Cook at 325 until dark golden brown.

Use the basic mix with 1 1/2 cups of walnuts and 3 large mashed bananas, 1/3 cup brown sugar and a large box of banana pudding. Omit the vanilla pudding.

Instead of large vanilla pudding use 2 small boxes of pistachio pudding. Omit cinnamon and add cup maraschino cherries, chopped with 2 tablespoonfuls of syrup from cherries. Reduce milk by 2 tablespoonfuls. Sprinkle baking pans with plain sugar.

To the basic recipe add 1 (5.1 oz) box of butterscotch pudding, an additional 1/2 cup milk, and 1 cup of butterscotch chips.
Omit the cinnamon.

To the basic recipe add 1 (5.1 oz) box of chocolate instant pudding, an additional 1/2 cup milk, chocolate chips and coconut.

Substitute Lemon Extract for the vanilla flavoring.
To the basic recipe add 1 box of lemon pudding and an additional 1/2 cup milk.
Omit the cinnamon and nuts, and add 1/4 cup of poppy seeds.
For extra flavor, add 2 cups shredded coconut.

When making the basic recipe, substitute orange juice for milk.
Before baking, stir in 1 tablespoon grated orange zest (colored portion of peel) and 1 cup dried cranberries.

Omit cinnamon from the basic recipe.
Add 1 (5.1 oz) box of instant caramel pudding, an additional 1/2 cup milk and 2 cups dried apples.

When making the basic recipe, reduce oil to 1/3 cup.
Reduce cinnamon to 1 teaspoon. Use brown sugar instead of white sugar.
Add 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice.
Before baking, stir in 1 cup canned pumpkin.

To the basic recipe add 1 small box of strawberry jello and an additional 1/2 cup milk.
Add 1 cup thawed strawberries.

Omit cinnamon from the basic recipe.
Replace the vanilla flavoring with almond flavoring.
Add 1 (5.1 oz) box of instant chocolate pudding, an additional 1/2 cup milk, 3 tsp. cocoa and 1 can tart red cherries in water, drained.

Increase the cinnamon in the basic recipe to 1 Tablespoon.
Add to the basic recipe the following ingredients:
3 medium carrots shredded
1/2 cup raisins
1/2 cup chunky homestyle applesauce
1 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon clove
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
Use a a bundt pan instead of a loaf pan. Bake until a wooden toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
Can be frosted with cream cheese frosting.

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