Mmm. Who hasn’t had a loaf of this cinnamon-sugared sweet bread? It’s one of those things that you receive with enthusiasm, and send on its way with equal enthusiasm! The constant “squishing” of baggies full of dough can feel relentless, but the look on my family’s face when they see what’s cooling on the counter…? Worth it every time!
I’ll share the from scratch starter recipe followed by the ten day instruction sheet and recipe for our favorite Amish Friendship Bread. Anything with two boxes of instant vanilla pudding has to be superb, right?(Maybe someone else can explain why it seems so “un-Amish”…I mean, honestly…ziploc baggies and instant pudding? Give me a break!) 🙂
Amish Friendship Bread Starter
(for an Easier/Smaller Batch follow this link)
Always use a wooden spoon for stirring the starter. Never use a metal spoon.
1 package active dry yeast
¼ cup warm water (110 degrees F)
3 cups all-purpose flour, divided
3 cups granulated sugar, divided
3 cups warm milk (110 degrees F), divided
In a small bowl, dissolve yeast in water. Let stand 10 minutes.
In a 2 quart glass, plastic or ceramic container, combine 1 cup flour and 1 cup sugar. Mix thoroughly or flour will lump when milk is added. Slowly stir in 1 cup milk and dissolved yeast mixture. Cover loosely and let stand at room temperature until bubbly.
Days 2 through 4
Stir starter with a wooden spoon.
Stir in 1 cup flour, 1 cup sugar and 1 cup milk.
Days 6 through 9
Stir starter with a spoon.
Stir in 1 cup flour, 1 cup sugar and 1 cup milk. Remove 1 or 2 cups to make your first bread, give three cups to friends along with the recipe. Store the remaining starter in a container in the refrigerator and begin the 10 day process over again.
You can also freeze this starter in 1 cup measures for later use. Frozen starter will take at least 3 hours at room temperature to thaw before using.
Yields 6 cups starter.
Amish Friendship Bread Recipe instructions
(to be given with 1 cup starter in Ziploc bag)
Once again, DO NOT use a metal spoon and DO NOT refrigerate! (Using a metal spoon or bowl or fork will have an acidic reaction with your starter)
Day 1—Do nothing day
Day 2—Squish bag
Day 3—Squish bag
Day 4—Squish bag
Day 5—Squish bag
Day 6—Squish bag
Day 7—Add to bag: 1 ½ cups each: flour, sugar, milk. Squish bag to mix.
Day 8—Squish bag and let air out.
Day 9—Squish bag and let air out.
NOTE: If you don’t let air out, the bag will explode!
Day 10—Empty contents of bag into a large mixing bowl. Add ½ cup each of flour, sugar and milk. Combine ingredients thoroughly. Pour 1 cup of this mixture into each of 3 sturdy Ziploc gallon size bags and give to friends along with a copy of this instruction sheet.
Add to the remaining mixture and mix well:
- 1 cup oil
- 3 eggs
- ½ cup milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
In a separate bowl, mix the following dry ingredients:
- 2 cups flour
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 ½ teaspoon baking powder
- 1 cup sugar
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- 2 teaspoons cinnamon
- 2 small boxes instant vanilla pudding
- 1 cup chopped pecans (optional)*.
*Optional: add 1 cup chopped nuts, or ½ cup: raisins, blueberries or chocolate chips.
Combine the wet and dry ingredients thoroughly. Grease 2 large bread loaf pans well. Mix up some additional cinnamon and sugar and shake into greased loaf pans to coat bottom and sides (this is optional!). Pour mix into pans. Sprinkle extra cinnamon and sugar on top. Bake at 325 degrees F for one hour. If freezing, cool completely beforehand.
*****************EDITED TO ADD******************April 14, 2008******************
Due to the numerous comments this post has generated, I’ve compiled the best of the Q&As and reader suggested recipe variations into another blog post. FAQs and Recipe Additions for Amish Friendship Bread. So check it out, unless you feel like scrolling down hundreds of comments…then, by all means, be my guest! Happy Baking!
493 replies on “Amish Friendship Bread~all you need to know!”
Oh, I remember getting a friendship bread among my group of friends before I was married years ago! I had almost forgotten! Thanks for the reminder and for the great recipe! 🙂
I came across this doing a netsearch on amish friendship bread and if it can be frozen.
Your blog entry says it can be frozen for later use, but do you know how long it is good for once frozen?
Hi Gena, hope I can help. For freezing the starter, I’d not leave it stashed longer than two months. The actual loaf of friendship bread would probably be fine up to 3 months later…It’s amazing too, how important your packaging is. I’d freeze my starter in a freezer safe ziplock, getting all the air possible out…and then put that baggie inside another baggie for maximum protection from freezer burn.
I am on my 3rd rotation of 10-day periods making bread. My question, can you make bread on any of the other days beside the 10th? I feel confined to the one day. Thanks for any help!
Good question, Robin. Wish I knew the answer…unfortunately, I’m not up on the “science” behind this starter!
If you’re feeling daring, just mess around with the starter and try making the bread a day early. If you decide to do this, let me know how it turned out.
OH!!! I’ve been trying to find a recipe for this starter forever!!! Just Lucked UP Today!! I have added applesauce to the muffin mixture, and the muffins were great!!
I’m on day seven of my first bag of starter, and I think it’s a great idea. Someone will be very happy in a few days!
Having Amish heritage myself, what I’d really like to know is the actual history behind this tradition. Did the Amish name get attached because it sounds like something the Amish would do, or did (or do) the Amish actually have a similar tradition?
I’ve looked in one Amish cookbook, as well two Mennonite cookbooks (Community and More with Less) and haven’t found any mention of it. I’ll ask relatives who might know, but I’d love to hear from any passers-by who are willing to share!
Me too, share away!
(I’m beginning to think I titled this post a little too blithely! There’s a LOT about Amish Friendship Bread that I can’t claim to know! After getting the starter secondhand for so many years, I was excited to get the original starter recipe…thus the all you NEED to know part of the title!)
An idea I thought I would share . . . Give one away and keep 3 for yourself; you can bake the bread in canning jars! Each 1 cup recipe cans 5 pint sized jars. Directions: Mix the recipe as instructed but rather than use loaf pans, grease (and sugar) 5 wide-mouth pint size canning jars. Fill each jar 1/2 full with batter. Place all jars on a cookie sheet and bake as instructed. Immediately from the oven, trim the overage with a knife, wipe the rim clean and place the seal and ring tightly on the jar. The jar will seal as the bread/cake cools. As long as the seal is not broken, you can preserve the bread for 6 months! Keep it for yourself or give some away in ‘food’ themed gift baskets for the holidays)!
Kimberly, I did this one year for Christmas gifts (not with Amish friendship bread, with another quick bread recipe)and though we didn’t get sick, I’ve since read that it’s very dangerous to do this. One website said you can do it as long as you store the canned bread in the refrigerator and not on the counter. And use it up pretty quickly.
It really bummed me out to read that, as the breads were so moist and delicious baked that way. Plus, they slide right out of those wide-mouth canning jars and slice into the cutest circular servings. Since the jars are greased and sugared, the sugar clings to the bread…it’s delicious!
How is it safe to eat if it is sitting on the counter? Won’t the ingredients spoil?
They don’t spoil if you follow the directions, it’s just part of the process. We’ve never gotten sick from eating it! :O)
I’ve been trying to figure out how to bake all of the batter instead of separating some to give to friends. The reasoning is that I want to bake several loaves for the holidays. Does anyone know the correct instructions for making the entire batch?
I have made the bread using all of the activated starter for years to give to my family at Christmas. I just follow the instructions to the 10th day. Then, instead of giving to 3 friends and baking one recipe, I divide the starter evenly among 4 bowls and then follow the recipe. Each bowl makes 2 loaf pans. The all-time favorite from my fans is Chocolate Chip. I just leave the cinnamon out and add 1/2 cup chococlate chips to each bowl. Delicious!
Hope this helps! I was looking online for instructions to begin the starter as I used all of mine last year. Happy baking!
My question is this: why no metal spoon? What will the metal do?
Thanks, Brenda, for answering that!
Linette, I’ve always heard that metallic bowls and spoons have the potential to be reactive with the starter and could ruin it. Hths!
I have made this bread for the holidays for many years. I have never refrigerated the starter – was told not to when I origianlly got a starter from a good friend. In the starter recipe above it does not say to refrigerate, but on the 10th day after you divide up and give to friends and you keep one for yourself it says to refrigerate and start the 10 day process again. So do you refrigerate and if so when? Also on beginning the starter it says to feed on the 5th day but on the instructions to give to a friend it says to feed on the 7th day and different amounts – I am a little confused. I have lost my original recipe and need your help please. Thanks – Happy Holidays
Hi Mitzi! The two recipes didn’t originate together. I’ve never had a problem waiting till the seventh day to feed the subsequent batches of starter…
As for refrigeration, it may not make sense, but here’s how I do it. In the initial recipe, your very first batch, let it get bubbly at room temp however long it needs…a day or more usually. From then on you can store it in the refrigerator in a glass container (mason jar or bowl). Feed it on schedule and keep it in the fridge. Once you divvy it up among friends, you can make the remainder into bread, or keep it on the counter in a ziplock bag and follow the same instruction sheet that you gave your friends. Some people keep this starter alive for decades, I’ve never gone more than 2 or 3 subsequent batches.
The thing to watch out for, is if your starter turns pinkish or orange, or if it just doesn’t smell right. Then toss it and start over. I’ve never had this happen, but a friend told me what to look for.
I got 2 starters from someone 2 weeks ago. I forgot about them and added the first ingredients a few days late, then followed the recipe after that day. The only think I changed was that there were lumps in my batter and so I beat the mix slightly with my hand mixer (metal beaters)just before pouring into my loaf pans. The bread loafs turned out beautiful. I now have 6 loafs to give away and enjoy for Christmas. Merry Christmas!!
Merry Christmas to you too, Cherie! It really is a forgiving recipe, as your story proves! Thanks for sharing!
I split my batch into two and added choco pudding and choco chips to one batch and butterscotch pudding and chip to the second batch. Delicious!!!!!
Another variation is to use lemon or pistachio pudding instead of vanilla. I’ve also heard that it’s good to cut up apple pieces and bake those in. As far as being confined to the 10 days, I have accidently skipped a day many times and if you only skip one or two days and just carry on where you left off the bread will be fine. But, you can’t miss any more than two because then it gets bad and you have to throw it out.
How can you tell if the strater is bad?
oops. I meant to say: How can you tell if the STARTER is bad?
Ooh, great ideas! Especially the butterscotch chip/pudding one, my family would really go for that, I’ll have to try it. Also, adding apples…mmm!
You can tell if it’s going bad by its color and smell. If it has a pink or orange tint, toss it.
hi! great webpage, i was actually searching for recipes for “Herman” and i’m not so sure that he is the same as an Amish Frienship bread. i have to bake him and keep him going pretty soon, so i’ll check back later 🙂
Never heard of Herman! I’d love to know more, if you find what you’re looking for elsewhere!
Somewhere in searching for this on the internet, I read that the “Herman” recipe was similar to the Amish one but it was started in Germany before the Amish one.
I found the website (about Herman): http://www.answers.com/topic/amish-friendship-bread
I don’t know if that’s true but when I saw someone mention about Herman, I thought I would share what I found.
I made my last loafs with 2 cups of fresh cranberries and 1 cup of apples and 1 cup of chopped walnuts. It was absolutely wonderful.
Thanks, Diana! Learn something new every day!
Linda, my mouth is watering, that sounds SOOOO good!
Hi! Today is Day 10 for my baking and I think I’ve been a good bag watcher. Now…I’ve kept the bag out on the counter this whole time and that’s what the directions SAY to do, but is this REALLY okay? I mean…milk out for ten days sounds strange to me.
Well…it’s in the oven. It SMELLS really good. I’m still wondering if it was okay, though…lol
It’s okay! :O) I’ll never forget the first time I made cottage cheese as a part of a pioneer cooking class with my kids. Leaving a gallon of milk on the counter to sour for a couple days seemed extreme, but it worked! The cottage cheese was great!
Okay…now THAT sounds interesting!
The bread turned out great. I’ll need to get a plastic whisk or something, though cause I found a few lumps. I HATE lumps!
I was just wondering about the metal part and freezing the batter. I have a few bags of batter in the freezer and was just wondering how you do the cycle after thawing. Do you feed it and then do the cycle or do you just start with day one? Also, is it okay to use an electric mixer right before putting it in your pans to bake so that way everything is mixed and lump-free? Thanks
As far as I know, the metal mixer blade won’t cause any problems as it’s occurring immediately before baking. I think the harm is that the metal will react with the starter…but that would be over time.
Once thawed you start the cycle wherever you left off! Hths!
HELP! On day 6 I added the extra ingredients and then accidently stirred with a metal spoon, should I restart? What is the reason of not using a metal spoon? Thanks.
HELP! On day 6 I added the extra ingredients and then accidently stirred with a metal spoon, should I restart? What is the reason of not using a metal spoon? Thanks.
Cloe, I’d start over. I explained the reason for not using metal in earlier comments. Seems it’s a common question to ask!
Cloe, I’d start over. I explained the reason for not using metal in earlier comments. Seems it’s a common question to ask!
can you use a large box of insant pudding instead of two small
can you use a large box of insant pudding instead of two small
Donna, it should be fine, I’d try it.
Donna, it should be fine, I’d try it.
The recipe that came with my starter said to use a large box of vanilla pudding. I used sugarless vanilla pudding. There’s quite a lot of sugar in the recipe already. But this is not a recipe for someone watching their carbs! 🙂 Peggy
The recipe that came with my starter said to use a large box of vanilla pudding. I used sugarless vanilla pudding. There’s quite a lot of sugar in the recipe already. But this is not a recipe for someone watching their carbs! 🙂 Peggy
This is totally easy to make more healthful. Switch the oil for applesauce. Use sugar-free instant pudding. It still comes out wonderfully.
This is totally easy to make more healthful. Switch the oil for applesauce. Use sugar-free instant pudding. It still comes out wonderfully.
Thanks Lauri and Peggy for the healthy tips! I’ve also done the applesauce/oil switch before with great results!
Thanks Lauri and Peggy for the healthy tips! I’ve also done the applesauce/oil switch before with great results!
I did my 2 loaves today ! DELICIOUS !!! BUT, as I used the sugar and cinnimin dusting of pans and on top of loaves…kinda sweet !!!
How can I do a more BREADY NOT CAKEY LOAF?
PLEASE POST AN ANSWER TO MY QUESTION ABOUT MAKING THE BREAD LESS CAKE LIKE, MORE JUST BREAD !!!!!!
I think people expect me to be an expert, but I’m not! I haven’t experimented with making it more like bread, I go by the maxim, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it!” :O) But in the case of better health, you could always try keeping sourdough starter on hand and making it into bread…I’ve got a post here on my blog with a sourdough recipe if you’re interested: http://homesteepedhope.wordpress.com/2006/10/09/sourdough-starter-recipe/
You could substitute grated zucchini for the sweet stuff…
Sorry I’m not more help. Please let us know if you happen upon a great result from your experimenting! I’d appreciate it!
Hello I am new to the Amish Bread craze. A lady that works with my husband gave me a starter. I am finishing day 10 today. I divided up two 1 cup portions to give away and keeping two for myself. The two I am giving away is that day one for them (day 10 for me) correct? Do I need to put my day 10 in the refrigerator if I want to start it over again as day 1 and not bake or leave on the counter again? How long can I go before I need to bake it…by what would be day 6 again of the starter maybe? I am little confused. Also, I found other recipes online for the starter that take 30 days and don’t call for yeast in the initial step just milk, sugar and flour. How would that work? Any ideas?
Thank so much for your help, Dana
One more question about the stirring/squishing process. Some versions say do nothing on the in between days. Thoughts on to squish or not to squish?
Thank you so very much for your help.
I just found my bread to be so sweet.
Ruth, you’re welcome, it is sweet…especially when you bake it in the sugared pans.
Brenda’s answer in the above comments makes a lot of sense in regards to your first question…she’s made the entire batch to give away as gifts by splitting it evenly into 4 bowls and following the instructions for the tenth day.
You are correct in that your tenth day is your friend’s first day. You can keep doing the process over and over without baking as long as you keep to the feeding/squishing/separating on tenth day rotation…and as long as it doesn’t start to smell funny. I’ve covered what “smells” to watch out for in above comments. Don’t put it in the refrigerator, just follow the same instructions as those you’re giving away to friends.
It is confusing having these two sets of instructions together in this blog post. The thing to remember is, once you’ve made the starter…you don’t ever need to go back to it unless you want to start from scratch again. Just keep your days straight and follow the set of instructions that go with the Amish Friendship Bread Recipe Instructions.
About the other versions, they probably work, I’ve never used them! For my recipe, make sure you squish on the squish days! :O)
Thanks for visiting my site, I have lots more than just Amish Friendship Bread here…you guys have to try my No-Knead Crusty French bread…it is super yummy and so easy. Use the search tool in the right sidebar and you’ll find it easy enough, or just browse my “Cooking and Food” category.
Have a wonderful Wednesday!
Thank you for all the info. I want to check out the french bread…..
Can you omit the sugar/cinnamon dust/ sprinkle…to make less sweet? AND, is it OK to use 2 per cent milk??
Thank you for all the info. I want to check out the french bread…..
Can you omit the sugar/cinnamon dust/ sprinkle…to make less sweet? AND, is it OK to use 2 per cent milk??Will the starter still do it’s thing with 2 per cent milk?
Thank you so much for an amazingly quick and helpful response. I really appreciate it. One other quick question concerning the milk. I used skim milk in my cycles. Does it really matter what type of milke you use (skim, 2% or vit. D)?
Thanks for the french bread recipe too.
Have a lovely day,
Don’t worry about the type of milk, I’ve used this recipe with several kinds.
Definitely skip the sugaring of the loaf pan, that won’t affect the bread at all. My family likes it, but I have done it without also.
I’m glad to help! Ruth, did you happen to see the comment by Lauri that recommended using sugar free instant pudding? She also switched the oil in the recipe for applesauce, which I can vouch for as well. I even use applesauce in my pancakes instead of oil, and in my meatballs.
I did the half oil and applesauce…GOOD !!!!
Like I said, I used i half cup oil and i half cup applesauce…GOOD !!!!
LOL, that was supposed to be I used 1 half cup oil and 1 half cup applesauce…GOOD !!!!
Thanks so much for letting us know how it turned out!
I am confused about the starter, it calls for 3 cups warm milk warm and divided. Does this mean on the fifth day you add l cup of warm milk or cold milk???and on the tenth day is it 1 cup warm milk or cold milk???? You are calling for 3 cups milk, are you using one cup on day one, one cup on 5th day, and 1 cup on 10th day, do you get a fresh cup of cold milk each time and warm it????
It does appear confusing, except what I intended when posting it that way was that ALL in ALL you’d need 3 cups of each, divided. Day 1, Day 5, and Day 10 all require 1 cup each of the sugar, flour and milk. So the totals needed for the ten day long starter recipe are listed as 3 each divided. And yes, you warm the milk (on the stovetop to 110 degrees F, watch carefully, that’s not really too warm)for each addition.
I’m sorry for the confusion in stating it that way! Hope I got this info to you in time.
Back in October you asked about thawing frozen Amish Starter Bread. The Starter mix can be frozen, but it needs to thaw at room temperature for about 3 hours to start again, with a the new batch.
Hope this helps.
Welcome back, Linda and thanks for that info! :O)
hi! I’m on my tenth day of the starter mix and my bag is ready to explode. I opened it to let the air out , expecting a nice yeasty smell, and got an aweful wierd smell. Almost like ammonia. Throw it away or is that normal for day 10?
Hm, Tanya…personally, I’ve never had one go bad…sooo, your guess is as good as mine. It’s a little stronger smell than “a nice yeasty smell”, but probably not so strong as ammonia. Is the color okay or is it a pinkish-orange? If it’s the pink or orange tint, throw it out. Also, with the bag being ready to explode…that might be an indicator that it’s not doing its thing correctly.
I just wondered if anyone has baked the bread with 2 eggs instead of 3. It’s day 10 and I just discovered I only have 2 eggs left and don’t really want to go to the store.
Try it with two, Stephanie, if they’re large eggs, it will be like 3 small eggs, right? :O)
I am on day 6 of my starter from scratch. I actually took a day off from work on Tuesday to bake LOL. I have to bring some loaves to work on Wednesday to share with co-workers, and I also have to bring a loaf or two to my bible study group Tuesday night. So I may not have much starter to share with others but I want to make sure I fill the baking pans right.
I bought the disposable aluminum bread pans to use, and I wanted to know how full to fill them? 1/2? They aren’t normal sized 9X5 and I want to make sure I don’t over or under fill them.
Thanks in advance for any help!
Glad you stopped by! Fill them over half…not quite 3/4 full should be about right!
What a great way to share the recipe…in already baked loaves!
Hope it works out well for you,
Thanks for the reply – I have checked multiple recipes and none of them really say anything about the pans – I found only one that said use a 9X5 bread pan. I love the aluminum disposable for taking places – you don’t have to worry about getting your pan back. :o)
I hope my baking turns out…It’s not one of my talents at all…
Michelle, if you’re not afraid of tackling this recipe then you’re probably shortchanging yourself in the talent category!:o)If you have any batter left after filling your aluminum pans to almost 3/4 full, you could use up the leftover in muffin tins…just an idea…
I really hope it turns out for you, will you let me know?
I will let you know – Since I am baking about 5 loaves today how do you store the finished loaf? I will be bringing two to work tomorrow and I didn’t know if I should wrap it in plastic wrap or tin foil or maybe a ziplock bag?
I used only 2 eggs and bread DID come out of the oven! I also didn’t have vanilla pudding, so I split the batter into 2 and put pistachio into one and cheesecake in the other. I liked the cheesecake one and my husband preferred the pistachio one!
Michelle, thanks for coming back! If you have gallon sized ziplocks that’s what I’d use for ease of storage between servings, and for freshness. I’ve used plastic wrap as well, as it doesn’t last long around this house so it’s almost a waste of a bag! Or I should say a waste of having to wash a bag, because I can’t stand to throw away those gallon sized bags when they’ve barely been used!
Stephanie, Cheesecake? As in real cheesecake? Wow, glad to know because that sounds incredibly good…wouldn’t have thought of doing that! I’m so glad you updated and let me know that 2 eggs worked!
Please tell me if I need to still put the cinnamin and sugar dusting, in the mix AND ON TOP this time as I am going to do my bread with lemon pudding…AND shall I use the lemon flavoring…if so, instead of vanilla…use the same measure of lemon flavoring? PLEASE let me know about these things!
PLEASE answer my questions as soon as you can as I am baking tomorrow dear !!
Using lemon, pistachio, or chocolate, I leave out the cinnamon and just use sugar for the topping. In actuality, you don’t have to put anything on top, but I like the crunchiness. I often just use a spray-on baking spray for my pans; sometimes I coat with sugar and sometimes not. In place of loaf pans, I use my Bundt pan a lot, and you can use a 9″ x 13″ cake pan, too. Just adjust cooking times and use the toothpick test.
Donna, that is very interesting about not having to use the sugar OR cinnamin !!! I like the crunch too.I did lemon today…..
Haven’t cut the loaf yet…BUT, I had enough to put in a cake pan…round. It was GOOD !!!!
Donna THANK you for stepping up and answering! I’ve had an incredibly busy past two days, hence my absence here! :O)
Ruth, the cinnamon/sugar coating the pan isn’t at all necessary, as you can see from Donna’s answer, there really is a lot of lee-way for playing around with the recipe. I’m so glad your recipe turned out well, and I apologize for not being much help! :O)
I used cheesecake pudding. It was delicious. The next round of bread baking, I used lemon pudding and poppyseed (minus the cinnamon/sugar topping and vanilla). I also made one loaf with banana pudding and mashed a banana into the dough (minus the cinnamon/sugar). The banana bread was wonderful! I’m ready to cook again today and am not sure what kind to make, they have all tasted so good! The bread with 3 eggs has a better consistency than the bread did with 2 eggs, but they both tasted fine.
i have been following the directions. i added ingredients on Day 6 yesterday … but my wife didn’t know that i had done that, and added the same things again today! so we have double everything in there right now. will it be ok, or do we need to start over?
Eric, I think you’d better start over so you have the right ratios to what’s already “fermented”…but you could give it a try, I don’t see how it could hurt other than not turning out. Up to you guys…but if you decide to go with it, let us know if it turned out or not!
I’m new at this Amish Friendship Bread and I’ve read every entry on here and have learned a lot, but I do still have a few questions. Is “feeding” when you add the flour, sugar and milk on day 5?? My recipe says to do it on day 6…does that matter?? Also, I froze one starter bag yesterday, which was day 3. When I decide to thaw it out, do I start right back into it from day 3, which is where I left off? Thanks so much!!
Hi Maria–wow, you made it through all the entries! Good for you…I never dreamed how popular this post would be when I wrote it.
Yes, feeding it is when you add the flour, sugar and milk. If your recipe says to do it on day 6, then stick with that. If it’s the same recipe as mine, then I’d say it wouldn’t matter as long as you pick one and stick with it. I’ve never frozen starter in the middle of the process, so I’d go ahead and thaw it and treat it as though it was day 3. If it starts to smell “off”, or turn a weird color then sacrifice it to the garbage!
Hope that helps, and I’m glad you came by Home-steeped Hope! :O)
Thanks for you response!! That helps a lot. I remembered one more question…when replacing oil with applesauce do you just substitute one cup for one cup or do you want to leave some of the fat in and do 3/4 c applesauce and 1/4 c oil? Thanks, again!
Yes, you just substitute it equally: 1 cup for 1 cup…it works great in many recipes…think pancakes, banana bread (any quick breads), cakes…so much healthier!
Let us know if your day 3 starter thaws and turns out for you! I’d like to know…
I’m baking my first batch of Amish bread today. I just wanted to know why you aren’t supposed to use any type of metal while mixing the ingredients. Does it do something to the bread? I’m just curious so if you know and could let me know that would be great.
I think because the metal makes the yeast not grow as well. That concept is used with yeast breads. Does anyone have a recipie for bread with real lemon juice and not pudding mixes?
I had never heard of this bread and my husband brought a bag that was given to him at work, the only thing is he put it in the refridgerator. I read all the other posts on metal but I didn’t see one on the problem I have. Will it still work? This seems very fun and I hope it works!
For those looking for other ways to use their “friendship batter” I have found a website that has cookies, biscuits, cake etc. . that uses the 10 day Amish batter. I am new to this sweeter version of “sourdough” so I have not tried these recipes yet but will be doing so to see what else I can make with this sweeter version. Here is the website: http://www.armchair.com/index.html
I found the other recipes under variations #3 Hope this helps.
Rita, what a neat site! I want that crock! 🙂 I’m so glad you left the link…I looked under Variation 3 and found “designer coffee amish friendship bread”…that takes 2/3 cup GFI coffee! YUM…my favorite coffee is GF Orange Cappuccino…I can’t imagine using that much of it for one loaf of bread though! Those tins are small enough as it is!
Clarissa, have fun with it, I doubt it will have hurt it to have it in the fridge this little bit. Just keep a “nose” on it, make sure it doesn’t smell weird or really strong. It will have a fermented-yeasty smell…but you don’t want it to get to be a strong ammonia type smell, or to turn pink or orange.
Emily, the metal is avoided because it can cause an acidic reaction with the starter–so I’m told! I don’t claim to understand it! Glad you’re giving it a try. It makes such a yummy loaf, my dh’s coworkers LOVE it and all the variations I’ve sent in the past.
Helene, thanks for jumping in to explain to Emily…we’re in the middle of influenza–three sick little girls–so I have been playing “blog catch up”! I don’t have any recipes that use a pudding substitute, sorry! I quickly browsed the “variation” pages at the site Rita mentioned, but didn’t see anything being substituted for pudding, except in one case they used orange or lemon jello instead of pudding. Hope that helps!
Thanks for coming by…and feel free to browse my blog, I’ve got a lot on homemaking/homeschooling and blog something new every weekday!
Happy baking to you!
I just wanted to step and in and let everyone know how well by bread came out~
I am on the second rotation from the starter I got. I have been adding nonfat milk and it is just fine. I baked the bread using 1/2 c applesauce and 1/2 c oil and no one could tell!
I used white chocolate sugar-free pudding (2) and put in a 1/2 bag of white chocolate chips and a cup of dried cranberries. A huge hit!! I love making up new ways to make yummy bread with this stuff!! Right now I have a batch in the oven using sugar-free cheesecake pudding and butterscotch chips!
Please clarify freezing the starter. I just finished baking my bread and I have 3 bags of starter. I’m going to double bag the starters and freeze them (which would be day 1). How long can the starter stay in the freezer? When I remove the starter I’m I on day 1 when I take it out of the freezer?
BTW – I made Pistachio with Walnut and Cranberry with Walnut, smells wonderful 🙂
Erin, it sounds not only yummy but beautiful too…white chocolate and cranberries…mmm! I’m so glad you’re enjoying the process…it’s such fun and reliable as can be…
Vickie, I wouldn’t leave them in the freezer longer than a couple months. When you remove them, you’ll still be on the same day in the plan as you were when you put them in the freezer. Be sure to date them, so you don’t mix them up with next week’s starter should you decide to stash it as well. This stuff is like baby rabbits, it multiplies quickly if not used up or given away doesn’t it? I LOVE walnuts in this bread, bet yours turned out de-LISH!
Thanks for coming by!
I have one question…if you don’t give away the starters and you just want to keep it for awhile how do you store it? I was reading something about letting it “live” for awhile but with this type of bread it seems that the batter would just grow and grow and it wouldn’t work to keep it. Thanks so much!!
There’s been some discussion in the comments here about freezing the starter…it usually works just fine. Just date your freezer bag– double bag it–and freeze. Use it within 2 months for best results. When you date it, make a note on it as to which day of the process you froze it. Let it thaw then continue the process.
You can check the above comments (I know there are a WHOLE bunch–I’m thinking about writing a new post that addresses all these questions/answers) if you want to know more!
Thanks, Mary. I actually have some in the freezer now (all of those posts helped!), but I was wondering if you do not freeze is there any other option to make it stay alive on your counter (like sourdough) or will it just grow and grow and then go bad? Thanks.
By the way, I did try substituting the oil for the applesauce, and I liked it, but it wasn’t as “addicting” as the original one. My family and I still liked it a lot but using all oil definitely does make the bread disappear a lot faster!
That’s something I’ve wondered as well, Maria…I think it can be stored in the refrigerator, but I’ll need to look into it more before you can take that as a fact. My recipe does say that you can store the remaining batter in the refrigerator and start the ten day process again, but I’ve never done that…I’ve either given it all away and started again from scratch, or jumped right back into the ten day counter process.
That’s interesting that your family prefers the oil over the applesauce, mine is the opposite! 🙂 I have to say as soon as I get the family on the mend (still battling influenza) I’m wanting to get back into this bread routine…so many yummy recipes have been shared!
QUESTION for anyone who knows:
A friend gave me a starter bag and I’m on day 3. I don’t want to make extra starters to give away. I want to end up with only enough batter/starter to make 2 loaves of Amish friendship bread and enough starter leftover to just put on my counter and continue the cycle. In other words, I only want to end up with 2 starters, not 4! I don’t want to end up with enough to give away. My friends have done this and don’t want any more starter! Can anyone tell me exactly how to achieve this??? THANKS! This is my first time going through this!
There are 2 ways to do this.
One is to take out your starter and make the rest into bread. I did this by removing 4 cups of starter from the bowl and measuring the left over ( I think it was 1 1/2 cups but I’m not positive).That way I knew how much starter it took to make the two loaves. I took out my cup of starter from what I removed and then made the rest into bread. I really cant remember if I ended up with 4 loaves or 6 but I put the extras in the freezer and gave them away at Christmas.
The second way ( WARNING: any one who has a big problem with wasting things may want to avert their eyes for this ) is to remove your cup of starter and just pitch the other three.
Hey guys, I just read through all of the posts and am still not sure the answer to my question…
Tomorrow morning will be 4 days after day 10. I followed the instructions on the “adding” day, etc., but 3 days have passed and I have been out of milk and no time to go to the store for more. I FINALLY have free time to go to the store and bake the bread tomorrow… but want to make sure everyone thinks it will be ok to continue with day 10… 4 days after the fact. So basically, want to know if it will be ok to add and divide tomorrow even though it’s day 14 instead of 10.
Thank you!! ps – Mary, you must be a very patient woman! 🙂
Becky–thanks for answering Tricia’s question! 🙂
Anjra, I’d feel better about telling you to go ahead with it if you’d stored it in the refrigerator. Does it look and smell okay? It might have messed up the process for continuing it with the divided portions, since you weren’t able to add the ingredients at the right time, but my gut feeling is you could go ahead and bake it all up. Personally I would finish it on this batch though, and start from scratch next time. If it turns out, you’ll have many loaves!
Hths, and I’m off to bed…!
Like many other people we got the starter from a friend. My little granddaughter has had great fun in helping to squish the bag. One day she tried to help by taking the air out of the bag and unfortunately she spilled about a cup of the fluid out! We just kept going. My daughter made some adjustments at the end and the bread turned out great. We used the 1/2 cup oil and 1/2 cup applesauce. 1/2% milk. Next time I think we will leave out the sugar dusting on the pan and the top. Just because we don’t need the extra calories.
Since we had the problem with the loss of part of the starter and we had to fudge on some of the ingredients. Used a little less flour and sugar I want to start over and make a new batch of the starter. We made two loaves and I threw away the rest. I think I could have kept it!
I do have a question. To make the starter can we use the fast rise yeast? I have that on hand. If not I can buy some of the other. I just have lots of the fast rising yeast. I use it in the Bread machine. Thank you for your help.
Fast rise yeast is fine to use…thanks for sharing that your recipe worked even with your grand-daughter’s “tweaking”!
Have a great day,
what if I used a metal fork to stir in the flour, sugar, and milk right before separating into the 4 new starters? I did not use a metal bowl.
Well, it says no metal utensils…you can see if it does the proper bubbling and seems otherwise fine.
Hope it works for you! I don’t think it would be unsafe, it’s just that the starter might have an acidic reaction that would keep it from working as intended. Let us know if things seem to be unaffected, okay?
Thanks! My loaves turned out fantastic – I’ll have to let you know about the starters tho 🙂
Just wanted to let everyone know that tonight I tried 2 batches. To one I added cup up dried apricots, cherry craisins and chopped almonds…. YUM!
To the other I added additional spices, grated carrots and sunflower seeds…. YUM too!
Ooh, hadn’t thought of adding sunflower seeds! That does sound good! Thanks for letting us know, Lara!
Has anyone made the bread sooner then the 10th day? I am on day 8 and have time to bake today…..
Go ahead and make it, Erin, I think it will be fine…hope I answered this in time!
Went ahead and made a few batches and it came out great! Butterscotch pudding w/ semi sweet chocolate chips and butterscotch chips is the winner at my house.
That’s one of our favorites too, Erin! Double butterscotch! 🙂
For whoever is interested, I’m working on a recipe for a smaller batch of AFB, and guess what? It turns out without the instant pudding! This recipe is really user-friendly to experiment with…I’ll post it as it’s own article next week, once I’m sure about it!
Oops! It is day 11 and I forgot to bake. Too many kids! Will it be okay to bake today, and what about sharing the starter, what day will it be for them? I have reviewed all of the comments and so far I haven’t found the answer to this question. This is a wonderful site and you are so prompt getting questions answered.
Thank you, Diane! I’m glad to have the visitors!
Bake it today, it will be fine! I’m learning that the AFB is pretty forgivable unless it starts to turn orange or pink or smell “off”…you should be fine! And did you feed it for day ten, or will you be feeding it for day ten today, on day 11? That will determine what day you tell your friend that it’s on. Just make sure she knows that her Day 1 was the day you added ingredients, and you’re good to go!
Btw, you win an A+ for reviewing all the comments! That’s a feat in itself! You might want to check back in 10 days…I’m going to add a link to this article to a new AFB recipe I’m working on that takes some of the fuss and the “volume” out of making this recipe!
I’m pretty sure I read through ALL of these comments, and a huge pat on the back to you for your patience in answering all of the questions!
I don’t believe mine was answered specifically though, and I’d hate to mess it up…
I have the bread and am due to bake it on March 22nd. I don’t have many people in my life who would enjoy this whole process, so I was thinking of saving my “give away” portions and freezing them.
Now, I’d like to take my frozen stuff and bake them for Easter (April 8th, probably want to bake them on the 7th. Now with the frozen prortions, can I just thaw them, add the rest of the ingredients, and bake them since they were theoretically at the same point as the portion I baked 22nd? Or do I start at day 1 with them (start on the 29th so it’ll be ready) and go through the process again?
Thanks so much; I hope I was clear with my question.
You were very clear, and kudos for giving the comments a go…:)
I think the only reason you’d thaw it and begin on day 1 of the process would be if you wanted to keep multiplying your starter. By all means, when you remove it and thaw it, just treat it as you treated the batch you separated it from. If you added your ingredients, as you would have, to the whole batch before dividing it up and freezing, then just remove it from the freezer, thaw it and mix it into bread and bake.
You could also just bake it all now and freeze the loaves to thaw that weekend…
Thanks for stopping by!
I thought this blog was gone forever but I found it again!! YEAH!! Okay, so I froze a starter about a month ago (March 1st) and I pulled it out to start on the day I left off (3rd day). I was a little concerned because today is day 7 and it wasn’t doing anything (no bubbling). However, I fed it today (forgot to do it yesterday) and it’s looking good now so I’ll let you know how it turns out. Glad I found these postings again!
I’m glad you stuck with it till you found it! I left the old blog up for a while with directions to the new one, making sure to mention it in each of my reply comments on the Amish Friendship Bread post…but people were still asking their questions on the “deactivated” blog. So I had to delete it. Couldn’t keep up with both!
Please let us know how it turns out, Maria! 🙂
My mother always wanted us to have this recipe. But not taking it we convinced her if she kept cooking it for us as adult children we would come to eat. For many years you could always find one on the counter waiting for us to devour it. 6 children and many grandchildren it became her pride. Last December my mother instructed her home-aid (she had taken up the baked love for us) that it was time to make the “last loaf”. My mother passed 4 days later. Well I have taken up making this lovely treat with so much love that I am proud to carry on this “tradition”. Having found your site has help greatly on something I only ate instead of made. Thank you so much!
Oh Patti! You make my day. What a sweet mother, and an especially meaningful tradition to take on. Now you’ll have to get one of those wall signs (I love them!) that says: “Gathering House” or something, since you’re the one carrying the torch of AFB for everyone to come and eat.
My mom, too, loves to bake…she instilled the love of baking breads in me. I’m the only one of her kids to take on the feat of her prize-winning croissants (a many stepped process that isn’t that hard, just comes across that way on paper! very intimidating!)…anyway, mom has so many special recipes that just envelope me with her special brand of comfort…I can empathize with what you wrote. I’m so sorry your mother is gone, but may you see her again one day!
I too have read all the postings. Mary, you are great with your responses, I love your site.
My mother gave me a starter and I have already made my first two loaves. I used applesauce instead of oil and used chocolate pudding and it was very yummy. 🙂
My issue is I am being overwhelmed by the thought of every time I make the bread I will have 4 starters and two loaves of bread. I would love to keep a starter and make bread every 10 days but I really do not have that many friends I can give starters to every time or give multiple loaves of bread to. Is there any way to keep the starter alive and just able to make a couple loaves of bread every 10 days without having to quadruple it every time? I know I can also freeze it but, again, I won’t I have the 4 starters again to give away? I don’t want to just throw it out every time…that could end up costing a lot. How do you guys do it? Do you really have that many friends? OR do you eat that much? hehe
Also, I gave a co-worker a starter today. She asked if she could use wheat flour or any kind of sugar substitute (I read about the sugar-free pudding idea).
Hey, welcome and thank you, Emilie! (My favorite spelling of that name, btw!)
I think you might be interested in my most recent post on Amish Friendship Bread:
It’s just as you described…once you have a healthy starter, maintain it every 8-10 days by feeding it 1 cup each of milk, flour, and sugar and removing some to bake or freeze, or give away…whichever way you want. Go check out the post, I think it would be helpful. I’ve been having good luck with it!
I think on the whole wheat flour, it would just have to be a trial and error process. I’ve never substituted it for the white flour before…nor have I used a sugar substitute. With all the hoopla out there about Splenda now, any sugar substitutes scare me off. 🙂
Hope to see you back here!
ETA: I forgot to mention that you still have to stir it each day (or squish it if you store it in a bag)…
I’ve really enjoyed reading through all the comments – lots of good tips!
I just completed my third round of the AFB and have had a lot of fun trying new recipes. My favorites are the lemon versions with either raspberries or white chocolate chips. Both are very good. I do have a question though. I made the 3rd round of bread last night and when I went to pull the bag out, the bag had expanded a lot, almost to the point of exploding. The batter smelled fine though and was not discolored. I baked according to the recipe and found this morning, when I went to cut the bread, some discoloration in the bottom part of the loaf. It also tasted more “wheaty,” if that makes sense. Any ideas about what happened? Is it okay to use the starters I pulled out from this round? I haven’t had any problems with previous batches so I’m kind of wondering what went wrong..
Thanks for the help!
Hmm…I know it’s typical of the bags to build up pressure, I’ve even had friends who’ve had the bag explode on their counter (terrible mess!)…so that part doesn’t concern me. Part of the squishing is making sure you let air escape if any has built up in the bag…
I’m not sure what to tell you about the “wheaty” smell though? If there’s no discoloration or weird smell of your starter, I’d just go with my instincts on it and say it’s safe to use…just keep a close eye on it.
Wish I had more of a clear answer for you!
My bread from the frozen starter turned out wonderful!! So freezing your starter is okay to do! I just don’t know how long you want to freeze it for. The one I thawed and used was a month old and I have some additional bags frozen that I will use again in a month (which will make it two months being frozen) so I’ll let you know if those turn out fine, too! I just thawed it out and started over from the day I left off (mine was day 3) and it turned out great. 🙂
Maria, thanks so much for letting us know! It’s nice to have more than one person’s say so to back me up. So glad the freezing/thawing worked…
Wow! Thank you for the starter recipe. I baked the 1st couple of loaves from a starter a friend gave, without realising that I needed to save some if I wanted to continue the baking process. Everyone who ate the bread absolutely loved it, and I’m looking forward to the next set of loaves. My questions are the following – (sorry, I didn’t see the answers to them in your blog, so here they are):
1. I’m in the 4th day of the starter (from scratch), and I don’t see any “bubbling”. Is this normal? The starter smells OK.
2. How do you warm up water/milk to 110 degrees F? I don’t have a cooking thermometer. Is the temperature very important? I just made sure both the water and milk were “lukewarm”.
I loved going through your thorough and patient responses to all the questions! You must be a saint!!
Thank you for the wonderful recipe as well as all the nifty ideas your readers had a chance to share!
Thank you for your sweet comments and for taking time to post! I’ve enjoyed the give and take here a whole lot, especially all the great recipe ideas everyone has shared!
As for your questions: The bubbling is most noticeable the first day, or the day you add fresh ingredients. Don’t worry that it’s not bubbling right now.
I don’t bother to use the thermometer anymore either…it’s good enough to make sure the milk is warmish and that you use warm-to-hot tap water. So you did good! 🙂
I bought lemon pudding today, Alycia’s idea of pairing it with raspberries has me dying to try it! Yum!
Has anyone tried keeping it in a crock? I’ve kept mine in a glass bowl (pampered chef type with plastic lid) for the past month and it’s working great! Gonna have to buy a crock, methinks…
Thanks for the feedback Mary! And yes, definitely try the lemon pudding/raspberries recipe. It’s really good. I think I added a few too many raspberries the first time I made it as the bread came out a little dough-ier than normal. The lemon with white chocolate chips is good too! tastes like a Nilla wafer cookie!
Happy Baking! 🙂
Mmm! I think I have white chocolate chips…maybe I’ll make two loaves, one of each!
I froze some of my starters and they have worked out well. I am now on day 8 and I did not feed on day 6 – is it ok to just freeze these starters since I have not fed them or should I feed, then back or just discard?
Great! Thanks for sharing your freezer success stories!
My answer depends on if you’re doing the initial starter recipe, or if this is part of the ongoing process. If it’s your very first week (10 days), then definitely go ahead and feed it and get back on track. If you’re just maintaining the starter, then here’s my rule of thumb and I go into it more in this post: http://homesteepedhope.com/2007/03/29/easier-amish-friendship-bread/
Anyway, to maintain mine, I make sure to keep it “healthy” by feeding/dividing it every 8-10 days. I’ve also cut back on the amounts I add to it so it’s more manageable. Less in the freezer, less friends to find to give it to… 🙂
Thanks. I totally understand because right now I have 4 starter bags sitting on my counter that need to be fed or given away.
So basically you keep one bag of starter and every 8-10 days you feed it and use 1/3 of the batter to bake 2 loaves – is that correct? Is this the way you don’t end up with multiple bags of starter?
Yes, just use the bag of starter that you have, and instead of feeding it 3 cups each of the ingredients, feed it 1 cup each.
I have about 4-6 cups starter at any given time–all kept in the same container, and every 8-10 days, I add 1 cup each of flour, sugar, and milk. That same day I take out two cups of starter and make two recipes of the bread with it. The rest I leave in a container on the counter and stir each day till I’m ready to make more bread. If I were to give some to a friend, or freeze it, I’d separate it the same day I feed the starter, after I’ve fed it.
Feel free to ask away if something I said wasn’t clear.
How long can you keep the starter on the counter? Will it ever spoil?
And the starter I made from scratch hasn’t bubbled yet 🙁 Any suggestions?
Maybe it doesn’t need to bubble? Mine only did on the initial day, and it’s still good. Here’s hoping…
As long as you feed and divide it every 8-10 days, baking with what you’ve divided out from the original starter, the starter can last indefinitely on the counter. Just remember to stir it/squish it (bowl or bag) every day. I’ve skipped a stirring by accident and it didn’t affect it adversely.
You’re welcome, 🙂
Thanks Mary for your feedback! My mother named me and my father spelled it, he said he wanted me to be different. 😉
Another question. I know you have said we can freeze and when we are ready we can take it out and just start on the day we were on when we put it in the freezer. My question is can I simply take out the bag of starter and bake with it, without going though the process? Like today when I bake, I’ll have four bags left, can I put those four in the freezer and when I’m ready thaw them out and make two loaves of bread? Then with my last bag I can do the process so I will have more to freeze. Would that work?
Does that make sense?
That would work! In fact, I’m thinking about baking all my starter up tomorrow as I’m going to be out of town for a couple of days and I’m ready for a break!
i just got my first starter two weeks ago! i fed it and squeezed it and loved it and i named it george. now it’s smelling like a marks-a-lot marker, you know what i’m talking about? it actually kind of made me dizzy and use it to reprimand my cats. i think i passed out actually, but i’m not sure. i woke up and was covered in starter. i just scraped up the starter and put it back in the bag. it’s now day 12 and still smells like marker, can i still use it to bake my batch?
🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 😉
is there a savory recipe for amish friendship bread? preferably with sardines? or cheese curds?
Got the starter from a friend. Yesterday was day 10 — too busy to bake, today is Day 11 — too late to bake tonight…. Okay to separate and bake on Day 12. I read back through all the posts and saw this question asked twice… saw the replies — but never saw the “poster” write back to say how it went to bake on later days…. any thoughts?
Yes, go ahead and bake it on day 12. My rule of thumb is to separate and bake every 8-10 days, but once in a while it won’t hurt to let it go a bit longer…as long as you’ve been stirring/squishing each day.
Wow – awesome site – great info on all my questions.
I was looking for instructions on how long you can leave it sit before baking – my “ten days” are long past, but it looks fine and smells fine. Wish me luck!
My friend was also looking for the “original” recipe so it will be fun to pass it on to her!
Reporting in — I did bake today, even though it was day 12. All went well — It tasted fine. I ate some this morning and am still alive — so that is a good sign! Gillian
Good news – all went well, even after leaving the starter sit on the counter for, oh, probably two weeks after the ten days?
I measured about 5 cups, and I wanted to make both cinnamon/applesauce bread and lemon poppyseed, so I took three cups out for three new starters, and made two batches for myself – two loaves of cinnamon/applesauce and one lemon/poppyseed bundt cake. (A bundt pan holds about two regular loaves.)
Thanks again for the help!
Wow, thanks for sharing the details, Vicki! Just goes to show that this starter is pretty hardy! I’m glad it worked, now be sure and let us know if you end up in the hospital with food poisoning! (Totally kidding! I’m sure you’ll be fine…)
I’m especially glad to know that about the bundt pan being equal to two loaves! What a pretty way to serve it…I’ll have to remember that.
Thanks for the update! I’m always glad to hear the success stories!
A while back I was worrying (needlessly, it seems!) about my starter not fermenting. Well, I’ve made a few more batches using this starter base, and it has been doing great! I made 40 ziplocs, and gave a couple to each of my friends (so they could bake one right away, and use the other as their starter), and it has turned out perfectly OK. The choco pudding + choco chips was really yummy!
Thanks again for sharing all these cool recipes!
You are so welcome, and thank you for following up…it’s so helpful to know the outcome! Plus, I love it when people share their favorite combination of puddings/additions to the bread!
40 ziplocs! You’ve been busy!
Hi Mary…Great blog! I am on my second round and have a question about freezing. I want to freeze the extra starter this time instead of giving it away. Can I just use the frozen portions to bake bread after thawing? Or do I need to proceed with another 10 day cycle before baking?
I’m happy to say “yes”! If you don’t want to feed it and grow more, then just use it up whether it’s all at once, or after freezing!
Thanks for stopping by!
Hi! I read through all of the posts and actually, your site seems to come the closest in answering my question. I did not have any milk on day 6 to “feed” the starter. Finally, on day 9, I was able to add the milk, flour, and sugar. Today is day 10, but already 11:30 at night. Is it okay to bake tomorrow, or do I need to wait the normal 4 days after feeding it? I’m not sure if it must ferment more in between the feeding and the actual day you add the final ingredients and bake. It still seems to look okay. Thanks for your time. All of the ideas are great, and I can’t wait to try some. Blessings, Pat
First, I’m so sorry I wasn’t able to get back to you on this yesterday! I typed reply, hit submit and my internet server kicked me offline and wouldn’t let me on again! How frustrating!
I’m assuming you were given a starter, so you’d be fine to separate and bake on the day that you added ingredients. I think my “Easier Amish Friendship Bread” would answer some questions for you. Follow this link:
and be sure to read the paragraph near the bottom on maintaining your starter. Basically, you just keep to an 8-10 day cycle of feeding/dividing/baking. Just be sure to keep squishing the bag (or stirring with a wooden spoon) every single day, and you’ll be okay!
Again, I apologize, I know you wanted to know whether or not to bake yesterday…I would have posted if I could. If you went ahead and waited, you’d be okay to pretend you added on day 5, and tomorrow would be close enough to day 10 to add day 10’s ingredients and divide and bake. Up to you!
Glad you found the site helpful,
Savory amish friendship bread – I left out the cinnamon and sugar, added about 1 cup cheddar cheese and 3/4 pkg pepperoni, 1/2 flour and 1/2 cornmeal. 1 cup fresh corn. Turned out well. Served with tomato sauce.
Carolyn, my mouth is watering! That sounds incredibly good and my family would love it! I’m going to buy pepperoni next time I’m at the store!
Thanks so much for telling us how you did it!
I am wanting to add pumpkin to mine. What would I need to cut back on in order to do this?
Wonderful site. Lots of good points.
Hi Lynnette, thanks for commenting! Adding pumpkin is a great idea. Off the top of my head, I’d suggest you add in a half cup of pureed pumpkin, it would fall in under the “optional” ingredients at the very end of the recipe. Raisins might be a good addition? You could play around with substituting a different pudding mix for vanilla, and add a pumpkin pie spice to the batter. Yum! Tell us how it turns out!
Thank you Mary for the reply. I will be baking again in a few days so I will let you know how it turns out. I am new to this and I think I baked a little too long yesterday. The outside and underneath got dark. But i put it in a zip lock before it was totally cool and that made it much softer and better. i did the pistachio pudding with marachino cherries. YUMMMMMMM!!!! I need to get some carrots and grate them up for carrot cake bread.
That does sound good, my dh would really go for the maraschino cherries!
I’m glad to know about putting it in the bag before it’s totally cool, who would’ve thought, but it makes sense!
I was given this same starter and set of instructions HOWEVER it says to put in 1 and 1/2 cups of flour, sugar, & milk just before giving away – but your says 1/2 cup. Which is it?
Thank you for answering me soon since the 3 bags are ready to had out with the instructions and I want it to be right. (All the details are exactly the same except for this one detail)
1/2 cup is how I’ve been making it all these years, with no problems or complaints. Either your copy has a typo or it’s just a different recipe. ? 🙂 Wish I was more help, except that you can know for sure that the result is great with the 1/2 cup. And it’s less ingredients that way!
Glad you found us,
What will happen if I bake on day 8 instead of 10. Our power is out, to the house is warm. Will it screw it up or shall I develop patience.
Let me rephrase…Our air conditioner has been out for 3 days, so the house has been in the upper 70’s. I was thinking that may have quickened the process, allowing me to bake on Day 8 than wait 2 more days. If anybody has ever taken such a risk, I’d love to hear about your results!
If you follow this link, http://homesteepedhope.com/2007/03/29/easier-amish-friendship-bread/
you’ll see that my basic rule of thumb is to go ahead and add ingredients/separate/bake anywhere around the 8-10 day mark. So you’d be fine to go ahead and bake it!
Mary, thank you so much for maintaining this thread. I havd just read every single response the the blog, and I almost feel like I’m an expert on Amish Friendship Bread now. Wow. Thank you!
Tanya, you’re so sweet! I’m glad you found it helpful, and please come back. I love the “community” we have here at home-steeped hope!
Very interesting information! Thanks!
HELP! I’ve been mushing my bag for my employer..I”m a nanny…and totally forgot to add the ingredients on day 6. It is now day 10 and I was expecting to bake today. Is it too late to add the ingredients and mush a few more days and then bake…or should I give up and toss it. How many days should I wait?
Me again…also I used a metal measuring spoon to add the flour and sugar and milk….for the day 6 add, which I did on day 10. Should I give up and toss? Geez I feel like such a fool!
not measuring spoon, but measuring cup…
HIUTOPOR, you’re welcome!
Hi Cindy–First, the measuring utensils being metal isn’t a problem, rather, it’s stirring with a metal spoon/fork that is the no no, and if you’ve been “mushing” then you’re okay! I’d say you’re fine to add the day 7 ingredients now and wait a couple days, then add the day 10 ingredients, divide and bake. It’s a really forgiving recipe, at least it has been for me so far!
I’ve just started my second ever batch of friendship starter (since childhood, that is) and I can tell you all first hand what happens when you use a metal utensil. Unfortunately, I was already on day 4 of my first starter when I realized –DUH!–I’d been using a regular fork to stir each day! The difference between that batch and this one (on day 4 also) is that batch #1 definitely didn’t bubble nearly as much as this current batch. Even this batch seems to be getting a little “flat” –however, I’ve decided to go ahead and feed it one day early (we live in AZ and it’s 84 degrees inside so I wonder if the higher temp perhaps causes the process to occur faster than typical).
I hope that helps someone. I guess I’d say that if you do it just once (use a metal spoon or fork to stir) then don’t worry but if you do it for several days you *could* have a problem.
I’m curious to know more about smell and flavor. The first day or two my batch smells sweet and yeasty –and then starts to smell a little more “sour” or “fermented” rather than yeasty (almost like beer, maybe?). It doesn’t smell BAD and looks fine, but I guess I would have thought it would smell sweet/yeasty?? I dared to taste it today (after feeding) and it’s very tangy tasting. Anyone else tasted and able to give me a comparison?!
Definitely! I’ve had the same experience, Anissa. Starts out sweet and yeasty and kind of turns after a few days. I did taste it, and tangy is a good word for it. I wouldn’t taste it again!
Thanks so much for sharing about the metal utensil’s effect on your batch. These things are so helpful to know, and the whole “metal” question is one of the most common ones I get!
I’m sorry, will you clarify for me…having it “turn” is a good/normal thing or does that mean it’s gone bad?
Sorry! I meant it’s normal that it doesn’t remain “sweet and yeasty”…it will still smell yeasty, but a little fermented is normal. You don’t want it changing color though, such as being tinged with orange or pink.
Question on the actual amount of starter when ready to bake. If we have 6 cups of starter, give away 3 cups, and are to use the “remaining” mixture to bake the bread, that means we are using THREE cups of starter to make a 2 loaf batch of bread?
Kim, that’s correct!
I have done all the tricks blogged above and find tha at it does not make a heck of a difference how wait or how far you digress from the addons. I is always delicious….just don’t forget you are baking Amish Bread at 325 degrees and NOT a 425. forgetting it Amish Friendship Cake and NOT sour dough white bread at 425 for hour like I did. OF course it burnt on the outside, but in my large bundt pan, and I just shaved the burnt of….voila, good cake!But I still need a good recipe for adding pureed pumpkin or pumpking pie filling to the original recipe. What do I leave out or decrease?
Hi Ila Rie,
I’ve noticed that also, at least that there is a good 3 day allowance on either side of the dividing and baking, good to know you’ve had no problems with it either.
On adding pumpkin puree/pie filling, I believe I’ve done this a long time ago, and just added it in as though it was one of the optional ingredients listed below my recipe. For instance, instead of 1/2 cup raisins, I’d substitute 1/2 cup pumpkin. A good flavor combo with the pumpkin is to substitute 1 cup applesauce for the 1 cup oil in the recipe…Mmm, and healthier also!
Great to see this blog still alive and kicking 🙂
Thought you might want to know the following: Back in April, I had distributed about 30 ziplocs of starter, baked a few for my family, and froze half a dozen ziplocs with the starter. 5 months later (!) I just baked from one of those frozen starters after thawing it for a couple of hours, and they turned out great (again!!). I baked one loaf of cinnamon bread and one with butterscotch pudding and butterscotch chips. This recipe is really forgiving!
I’ll see if I can continue using one of the frozen starters as a base for making more and keep you posted.
Thanks for maintaining the site!
I recognized your name immediately as one of the Amish-Friendship-Bread ladies! 🙂 Thanks so much for returning to share your freezer success story! That sure takes the immediacy out of making this recipe, knowing it keeps for so long can really be a break for those of us who don’t want to get completely out of starter!
Yes, let us know if it still has the oomph necessary to grow on your counter… 😉
If you are not the Amish Bread expert I don’t know who is!!! Every question I’ve had you have provided great answers for. Thank you SO MUCH for keeping this site up. You may have answered this earlier…I scanned your posts but didn’t see it. I accidentally bought SR flour instead of All Purpose. I’m pretty sure I can use it on baking day, but I have to leave out salt and baking powder (correct me if I’m wrong!), but will it mess up my starter if I use it? I wanted to ask before I tried it. By the way, your chocolate bread with choc chips and pecans was super, as was the lemon poppyseed, blueberry cheesecake, etc. All your suggestions are the best. Thanks!
A friend asked me to mind their starter for them while gone for a week and included copied instructions…which left off the word “day” on the left of the page. Sooo on day ten I added day six plus day ten to the original batch. Can I let the yeast feed on this big meal for a couple of days and try baking, or should I throw it out and start over?
Audrey, I keep this site up for ladies like you, thanks so much for the encouragement! I appreciate it. 🙂
As far as using self-rising flour, go for it. I’ve never used it, but I’ve a friend that uses it all the time. If it affects the outcome, I’d think it wouldn’t be that noticeable. Let us know how it turns out and good luck!
Hi there, Olga. I’m a little confused. Did you not feed on day 6, but instead, fed both Day 6 and Day 10 together? It’s a really hard recipe to “mess” up, so I’d think you could go ahead and bake it up. Especially if you did feed it on Day 6. If you didn’t, it wouldn’t hurt anything, to, as you put it, let it “feed on the big meal” 🙂 for a couple more days before dividing and baking.
Wish I was more help!
Okay, apparently there is indeed no way to mess this bread up. Here’s my report about the self-rising flour. I added SR flour on Day 5 to the starter I had originally started with AP flour, and I used SR to the baking recipe on Day 10. It did have a lighter texture, but was very good. I wouldn’t have known the difference. One other thing I discovered today that will save me some time and ingredients is this. I like to bake two large seperate loaves (dividing my batter right before the pudding steps)and have only one cup of starter left over, as I’ve no friends left to give starter bags to. Sooooo to save ingredients this worked for me:
1) Skip the first step on Day 10 where you add flour, sugar, and milk to your starter, and go ahead and put one cup of starter in a bag.
2) With your remaining starter, follow the recipe like normal.
I’m going to add my flour, sugar, and milk to my 1 cup of starter tomorrow and hopefully it will continue in the fermentation process.
One final note for impatient bakers like myself, I know it’s not technically “allowed”, but I bake every Saturday, adding my flour, sugar, and milk in the middle of the week. Maybe it would be better if I waited the full amount of time, but it has never come out tasting like it was missing anything!
Audrey, thanks for updating on the self-rising flour, good to know! Loved the line “as I’ve no friends left to give the starter to”, hee hee. They think it’s a big scary process don’t they? I’m just like you, I think it’s hard to mess this one up. I have yet to get a cutesy crock to keep mine in though…
I really appreciate you sharing your method. Keeping track of when to add (on Weds) and when to bake (Saturdays) is much simpler than trying to remember which day you’re on in the first place! (Not that it matters, as we’ve figured out by now!)
Have a wonderful weekend!
I love this site…lots of great suggestions. And I am going to do pumpkin cranberry muffins for Thanksgiving! Here’s hoping they work 🙂 and now…for some questions:
Apparently my starter was diffent–don’t know, I was reluctantly dragged in and now am addicted! Anyways, the recipe I have uses SR flour and NO baking powder or baking soda! It’s been yummy and moist so far although it does seem to cook about 10 minutes faster and maybe not be quite as high? Not sure, I’ve only baked twice thus far.
I too, have run out of friends to give this too. They all say….no…I have 4 bags to give, don’t you need another one?! Math was never strong for me, If I add 1C each flour,sugar,milk on Day 6 and 1C milk,sugar and 2C flour on Day 10, how do I reduce this to have only 1-2 bags to give or freeze?
Also any suggestions to make this more diabetic friendly? Muffins work great at the office on Monday mornings too…coffee/tea/cocoa and homemade amish muffins makes coming to work today not so bad after all! 😉 Thanks for a wonderfully extensive and fun to read blog site!
Oh Sindyanne, thanks!
Have you found my other Amish Friendship Bread recipe? It’s for an easier, smaller batch, here’s the link:
The above recipe, is basically the same as the one on this post, except I took out 2 cups flour, 2 cups sugar, and 2 cups milk. But be sure to click on the link to read the details…
As far as making it more diabetic friendly, the hard thing with that one is even if you tried a sugar substitute (and that might work, I’ve never tried it) you’d need to eliminate the pudding, or get a sugar-free pudding. And isn’t white flour bad for diabetics also? It would be worth experimenting with, if you have a diabetic friend you want to spoil!
So neat that you take muffins to work, my dh would love for me to send some along with him, and can you believe it, I’ve never made AFB into muffins!
Thanks for sharing your recipe differences and how well they work! This topic never gets dull…
Why isn’t my starter bubbling? I have followed all instructions perfectly. I went to other websites and found others with this problem. Some advisers said there wasn’t a real problem with few bubbles. I am leaving it out at room temperature and covering with cheese cloth. I have stirred only with a wooden spoon in a large ceramic bowl. My yeast was in date. I used whole milk which I read was better than low fat. I just can’t figure out now with day 10 why there are so few bubbles. It smells very yeasty and sweet as it should and has good color.
I don’t have a scientific answer for you, but maybe winter is the culprit. Sometimes mine bubbles more in the warm weather than it does this time of year. If the color is good and it smells right (and it sounds like it does), then I wouldn’t worry about it.
Sorry I’m not more help, but good luck with your AFB!
I received my starter 3 weeks ago and my bread was perfect. Today I baked my bread (2nd batch of starter) and it collapsed. Any suggestions???
Wish I had a good answer for you…I’m not sure, as it’s a pretty hard recipe to mess up. Must be a good reason, but if I were you and wanted to make more, I’d just start from scratch.
So sorry I’m not more help! Let us know if you figure it out.
HELP… today is day seven and I forgot to add the ingredients yesterday. I squished it but didn’t realize it was time to add the flower sugar and milk. Is it too late? Should I just chuck it and try to get a new starter?
Please help asap! thanks.
Hi, Mary! It’s been awhile since I’ve been on this site. We are pregnant with our third child and I’m just now starting to desire some of that yummy bread!! So I’d frozen a starter for 7 mos. and then baked it and it turned out great! My recipe is a little different than the one on this site but freezing the starter was fine for that long. I have one question, though….do you have to bake on day 10 or can you do it right after you feed your starter? My recipe calls for feeding the starter on day six so I didn’t know if that was too early or even the reason behind waiting until day 10. Thanks!
Shelly, I’m sooo sorry, you’ve been waiting on an answer and we’ve been too busy to get online here the past couple days! Your starter is fine, I hope you’ve been squishing it! This is a very forgiving recipe. Just add the ingredients and keep squishing for a few more days till day ten or eleven. It will turn out great!
Again, hope you didn’t give up on me!
Hey Maria, congratulations on your great news! I was just at a baby shower this past weekend and seeing all those teensy outfits and infant washcloths and newborn diapers about put me over the EDGE…you are so blessed! I hope and pray you’ll have a very comfortable pregnancy and uneventful childbirth–pain wise!
Okay, wow on 7 months in the freezer and still good! That’s great news for all of us who have no more friends to give starter to! 😉 The good news is you don’t need to wait…you can go ahead and bake if you want to. I’ve done just about everything and haven’t ruined mine yet.
So go satisfy that craving!
Glad you came back by,
Hi I figured I’d join in here.
First congrats on the new addition.
My story, this guy brought in a handful of loaves recently. And of course they lasted only a few minutes once unwrapped.
I told him I wanted my own loaf – lol.
He said they were probably gone but that he could bring me in a starter.
I told him it was okay just tell me what I need to do because I an NOT a baker. he laughed.
I thought he forgot about me (he was due to go deer hunting)
Well I rec’d a message via another employee to meet him at the front gate.
Well I’ll be … he had a loaf AND a starter.
I baked it tonight (today made day 10).
It is still great although I forgot to put the sugar on Top of the loaf before baking. It is still sweet and cinnamon-y, just not on the top, but WOW – I did it.
I plan to share with others but thanks for the news about the freezing. I plan to go through this next starter and hopefully have some for the holidays.
How nice of him! I just love the “community” you get with Amish Friendship Bread. To share starters and swap recipes…and several here have shared how they like to take them to work for break time.
Glad yours turned out great! And that you found this site!
Quick question for you all: If I add some pumpkin puree, do I need to add more flour or reduce my applesauce/oil? I am just wondering if it will be too wet to bake? Thanks!
PS. I am on my 3rd frozen batter. I made one with half the sugar and added lots of savory herbs, some ground beef and a taco seasoning mix instead of pudding. It was great with speghetti sauce 🙂
Well, my starter is still not bubbling and does not have any yeasty smell at all. I dumped out two batches after baking and it just didn’t have the taste as I know what that taste is. Seven years ago I baked for two months during the holidays and everytime had bubbling and that yeasty smell. I know the yeast I used was fine as the date was good. I am going to add a little more yeast to this batch, cook again, and if I do not get that taste of bread I had before I will give up. I feed it when I am suppose to and use all correct utensils. This is truly a mystery. I am setting my starter under a towel in a plastic bag away from light. I do not know what else to do. All of my ingredients are correct, also. As I said, I baked before and it always turned out perfect. Same everything.
I am so sad.
I’m so sorry, Jeannie! I wonder if it has to do with altitude or winter temps? Was your failed starter from a batch a friend had given you, or from my recipe here? I can only hope that this fresh batch will produce for you. I’ve heard of people keeping it in a warm place, such as near the wood stove (if you have one…).
I’d be sad too! It’s quite an undertaking to follow everything for ten days and then have to throw it out!
I really hope it works this time. Keep me informed!
Your savory loaf sounds sooo good! Thanks for sharing!
My rule of thumb on adding anything that’s not in the recipe is that if it’s only a half cup, nothing needs adjusted. If you wanted to add more, then you might have to lesson the amount of oil/applesauce. I’ve made this into pumpkin bread though, with just a half cup of pumpkin puree per batch, and it was really good!
Wow this is an active blog! I am on Day 4 of my “Easy Amish Friendship Bread”…can’t wait to cook mine since it has been years since I tried it. I had it at my Grade 2 First Communion (we did it as a class together) so I am looking forward to it! I can’t even remember how it tasted but I do remember loving it!
Oh good to hear! I hope it brings back many tasty memories! 🙂
Major Disaster! My batter was bubbling along nice and full on Sunday and was due to bake last night. However, when I got home from work, it had completely congealed and separated with a gloppy mess on the bottom and a clearish liquid on top…didn’t smell good either! What could have caused this? Was my house too cold for it to rest comfortably? Now I have to find another started and get going for xmas….hopefully wont kill that one! Oh well, A Blessed and Happy Thanksgiving to Everyone!
Sorry to hear about that! You have a very happy Thanksgiving too! (I almost wish I lived in the States right now because then I’d be having turkey this weekend YUM!).
Oh SindyAnne, I’m sorry! How strange that it seemed to be fine and then died on you. 🙁
Haven’t had that happen, wish I had a scientific answer to give you, but maybe it wasn’t anything you could change.
Here’s hoping the next batch turns out!
And Happy Thanksgiving to you too!
Geri, you could celebrate both Thanksgivings…Canadian and American…:) Or just roast a turkey and call it good!
LOL…yup! I have so much to be thankful for anyways so I might as well celebrate both!
Exactly! Don’t we all? So when is the Canadian Thanksgiving, anyway? 😉 Maybe I should celebrate both next year…
LOL…it was on October 8 this year. I always wondered why Canadians and Americans didn’t choose a day together and celebrate it then, because technically they are celebrating the same thing right? We both are celebrating what we are thankful for…and we have so much else in common that it would make sense to both be celebrating on the same day like we do with so many other things. I’m sure there is a reason somewhere that I just don’t know of though. Anyways…Happy Thanksgiving! I brought out an elk roast last night to cook for our makeshift Thanksgiving here!
I wasn’t able to process/bake my bread until the 12th day. Smelled kinda vinegary, not sweet & yeasty like it did on prior days. I haven’t tasted the baked loaves yet, they look & smell good though. My starters to give away are not pink or orange, they smell vinegary & aren’t bubbling like the original bag. It has gotten cooler here, but it’s still warm in the house. Do I still have good starter, or am I in the vinegar business?
Way to go, Geri! Elk roast…would love to add it to my culinary memories! 😉 Thanks for the date!
Grant, I’d give your starter away if your loaves taste good. It wouldn’t have hurt anything to wait till the 12th day, as long as you were still squishing each day. Mine doesn’t always bubble, and sometimes there’s a hint of the vinegary smell, but it’s not a strong smell. Go with your gut!
Sorry I’m not more help!
I forgot to bake the bread on the 10th day. I am on day 14….would it still be ok to make the bread or should I start over?
JoeyAnn, it will be fine…you’ve still been squeezing the bag daily, right? Just bake it soon!
Well, my starter, which I did get off of this wonderful website, has never ever bubbled, no air at all in the bags, and my first bread was not very good because of no yeasty taste or smell and when cooked was kind of flat in taste. I started all over throwing a lot down the drain. I cooked off last week and although my starter has yet to bubble at all, this batch turned out well though not as absolutely wonderful as years ago when I did this. I went up to 16 days with it sitting out in bags and it did finally get a slight yeasty smell. Always had the right color, however. I know when it goes bad.
I live in Texas, so weather is not the issue. I know how to do this since I did it perfectly 7 years ago for several months. I also have a new oven that is remarkable with all other baking. I have said before on here that this is truly a mystery. I honestly think it is the quality of the yeast. I have used 5 individual packets in all experimenting with different batches. (the 3 packets come together.) with a 2008 exp. date. I just think the yeast from Fleishman’s is poor quality. I tested it to see how live it was and it didn’t rise well in the cup either. Just a little.
If any of you are having trouble with starting a starter and beginning the process, it might be poor quality yeast. There is not a single other reason for my starter never bubbling or getting to that yeasty stage.
That’s just rotten! I’m so sorry it’s not working for you. I’ve never had problems with my Fleishman’s yeast, not yet anyway. I buy mine in the little brown jars, but I doubt that would make any difference. Sounds like you’ve explored all the possibilities. Wish I could wave a magic wand your way!
You’re to be commended for sticking it out this long, and trying so many different routes to success. If you finally figure it out, please let us know.
To whom this may concern: I would like to now if you forget to put 1 cup of sugar, 1 cup of milk, 1 cup flour
what would happen on the 10th day your ready to make the bread. Can you still add the flour,sugar,milk or will it hurt and just add the stuff to it. Or will someone get sick . I would like to now what to do i have 5 bags of starter and wow i just forgot to put it in and tomorw is time to make the bread. What should I do. Please tell me what to do. Thank you ms jeffrey L.burkett
Dear Mrs. Burkett,
I assume, since you have 5 bags of starter, that this batch is not the original batch, so you should be safe to go ahead and add your flour/sugar/milk today and bake it all up. I have a “rule of thumb” for any weeks after the original/first week of creating the starter…and I outline it at another post which I titled “Easier Amish Friendship Bread”:
I copied and pasted the important stuff from the “Easier-Family Friendly” recipe here below, as it works for this post’s recipe as well:
Maintaining what’s left: Stir each day (or squish and release the air if necessary if you’re storing it in a zip lock). Once every 8-10 days, feed your starter the requisite one cup each of flour, sugar and milk. At this same time, remove about a third of the starter and either bake bread or freeze it (thaw frozen starter at room temp and start the feed/divide process as though day one was just completed).
The goal is to keep your starter “alive” by feeding and dividing.
So, Mrs. Burkett, since you’re only on the tenth day, go ahead and add the ingredients and bake! No one will get sick, and the bread should be just fine. Hope it works out for you!
I’ve been making Amish friendship bread for about 13 years. Every year I save a few starts and freeze them(yes, you heard me, freeze them) for a whole year. I take them out at the beginning of December and set them on my counter. I grow a bunch more and bake it for Christmas. This year was the first time my start didn’t “start”. It would not bubble and grow. I guess I finally killed it. Thanks so much for the start recipe. It saved me.
You are so welcome, Becky! How special though, to have kept it alive (cryonic friendship bread? lol) for 15 years!! Wow. I hope this starter has many future Christmases for your family and loved ones! I love that it freezes so long, I have yet to leave mine in the freezer that long, but have heard many success stories. We just cleaned out our freezer and had enough frozen bananas to make 3 loaves of banana bread–yum!
Happy Christmas, Becky!
This is for all of you that are afraid of the live cultures going bad and leaving the starter out too long. This is my second huge round of making the bread over the years. I have never ever put it in the refrigerator. It has sat out on the cabinet for months without every being put in there and I have let a week go by without baking on the day indicated. I have never had it go bad on me. It always has the nice tan color and the smell is never off. I guess I do this because in 1984, I spent a week in Lancaster, Pa. The Amish ladies I spoke with do not keep their extremly cool or freeze. They honestly do not bake every single day all year long, especially when busy with canning or emergencies, etc. They also sometimes allow a few days to go by past the baking days indicated. This starter is very forgiving as this site reveals.
I am on my third month with the starter (which didn’t bubble at first but is now) and nothing except the baked loaves have been refrigerated or frozen. I certainly do not want for any of you to risk the starter gone bad, but mine hasn’t. As long as it smells and looks perfect, the refrigeration is an option. The Amish ladies are terrified of killing the cultures. Of course it gets really cold in the winter there. But they have hot summers, also. Just thought I would share. I have eaten a ton of this stuff (not so much anymore since I am trying to stay healthier and thinner) and neither me, my family, or friends have ever gotten sick from months old starter on the cabinet. If you are not sure as to starter gone bad, then do not do this.
Jeannie, I so appreciate you sharing all of this! How neat that you actually got to visit with Amish cooks about it! I’m always glad for the backup of other AFB cooks that have “been there and done that”! Your post was a great encouragement!
Thanks a bunch!
I made this bread tonight with cranberries and pecans and it is delicious. What’s the best way to store the bread once it’s been baked? Should I refrigerate it?
Deanna, what a Christmasy-treat, thanks for sharing your combination!
I store mine in a gallon sized zip lock in the fridge. But usually my family eats the first loaf warm from the oven!
Since the recipe contains eggs, it’s safest to refrigerate.
Have a Merry Christmas Deanna!
My brother and sister in law live in a rural part of Ohio, they turned me on to friendship bread over the holidays. I must say good thing I tasted it before I was told how it was made, because I think if I would have known in advance I would have thought twice about eating it!
It really is a delicious bread and one we enjoy sharing with our friends.
Laughing with you, Mario, it is a different bread making process, for sure! Glad you both are hooked, will you be trying your own batch now?
My husband and I really like the AFB. I have the 3rd batch of Starter “bubbling” on the counter. I read with lots of intrest, that some of you have frozen the Starter. I am running out of people to give the Starter to, my question is: when I freeze the starter, at what stage should I freeze it. after the 5th day feeding or after the 10 day. Then I have one more question has anyone of you ever tried the Starter to make Belgian Waffles??????, Saw, that some of you have used it to make Pancakes. I really would appreciate your response. Thank you
Hi Erika, either of those feeding days would work fine, just make a note on the bag so you’ll remember where to pick up with it once you thaw it out. It works great, one of the ladies here even leaves hers in the freezer for an entire year so she has plenty of starter for an annual Christmas baking spree!
I’m curious too, if anyone here has used their starter for Belgian waffles, hopefully someone will reply. 🙂
HELP!! Waited till day 6 To add ingredients..what do I do now?
You’re okay, Pat! Go ahead and add the ingredients today, and squish daily till day eleven, if you want to compensate. I’ve discovered it’s not going to affect the outcome one bit. 🙂
I had 23 bags of Starter on the counter. Today is baking day. Used your “short-cut” of feeding. Will freeze some of the Starter today and also try the Belgian Waffles tomorrow morning, since I have so much Starter and nobody wants it, everybody just tells me: “we will take the bread, after you baked it.” Will let you know how the Belgian Waffles turn out. turns out.
Thank you for your advise and your help.
I did not have 23, I only had 3 bags of Starter….. Should have read my response. Sorry,
No need to apologize, but I’m glad you clarified that! 23 bags of starter would have been overwhelming! 😉 Yes, please let me know how your waffles turn out, and how you made them!
Thanks for letting me know you’re trying the shortcut, that’s the only way I make it anymore!
my daughter made regular waffles out of the Starter yesterday, not the Belgian, I will make those today.
Here is the recipe she used, I think, it’s a good use for Starter you cannot give away.
Here is the recipe:
2 cups Starter,
flour if you want to (she used 1 cup)
1/4 cup oil
2 tbsp. sugar
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking soda
combine Starter with enough flour, that is in a way you like it (my daughter used 1 cup)Add oil, eggs. sugar, salt and baking soda to the Starter. Mix thorouglhly with wooden or plastic spoon. let the mixture rest for a little bit, maybe 10 minutes. Cook in your waffle iron. Serve with Syrup
I will try it once like my daughter so see how it works, using the Belgian Waffle Maker and will adjust it, if I have too.
Like I said my daughter made it last night, as she had to work late, it even went over well with my grandchildren :-), 🙂
Will let you know about my experiments.
as promised, here are my results.
I used Mary’s “short-cut Amish Friendship Cake” version.
Waring Beligian Waffle Maker,
also used the recipe I had posted above. I will not add,the 2 tbsp. sugar, it’s very sweet, but that is up to your taste.
2 cups Starter,
flour if you want to (she used 1 cup)
1/4 cup oil
2 tbsp. sugar (optional)
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking soda
combine Starter with enough flour, to get it to the consistency you like (my daughter used 1 cup)Add oil, eggs. sugar, salt and baking soda to the Starter. Mix thorouglhly with wooden or plastic spoon. let the mixture rest for a little bit, maybe 10 minutes. Bake in your waffle iron. Serve with Syrup
Made 6 very good and fluffy waffles.
Was going to ask the same thing as gena – how long it’s good frozen. Also, why do you recommend using a wooden spoon over a metal one?
Oh THANK you, Erika, for posting both recipes! I’m printing off this info, and know I won’t be the only one!
Hi Wooden Gates,
I’ve always held to the rule of thumb of using up my frozen starter within 6 months, but several ladies keep theirs frozen much longer with good results. As far as the wooden spoon vs metal, all I know is it’s something about the starter having an acidic reaction to the metal…and so I follow the no-metal rule! 😉
Someone HELP me please. I’ve exausted all my friends. No one wants it. I kept all four and now I need to take out 16 cups! UNBELIEVABLE!
Is there a more economical way so I don’t have to throw away 3 cups each week or save 16 more cups? Adding less flour, sugar and milk?
I just found your Easier Amish Friendship Bread, How many cups do you take out to give away?
AND freezing, I can’t find the info above. What day do you put the ziploc in the freezer? Does it get fed at all?
Sorry to ramble, I’m swimming in batter here!
Merry, I’m sorry I didn’t get to this sooner, all my first time commenters go into a moderation queue, and I was offline all yesterday.
I think to save your sanity you better freeze a bunch of starter. 🙂 It doesn’t need to be on a “certain” day, just label your bag, so you know what day to pick up on when you thaw it.
Suggesting my easier AFB recipe, is all I know to make it more economical and less leftover! Sorry! As far as giving away, you can give a cup (or more!) away to your friends, or freeze it, or just bake up a big batch when it’s baking day. I find my friends don’t object to getting the loaves of already baked AFB!
I’ve become a very lazy AFB maker. I stir it every day or 2. Once a week I add 1/2 cup of everything, and the next day I take out a cup and make a 9×13 pan of bread (35 min baking time.) I usually make it with the cinnamon and add raisins or chopped dry apricots (I happen to live in the apricot capital of the world!) My husband loves to top this with whipped cream or eat it in a bowl with milk poured over it. I don’t bake much in the hottest days of summer, so I might freeze it then. I never give any away, unless asked for it.
I’m going to have to try this, Cena, it sounds very manageable! Glad you shared how…
Hi, what a great post! I have read it all!
My Mum made friendship cake when I was a child & I remember I loved it. I found a starter recipe, which is similar to yours & I am now on day 3 (can’t wait until day 10)!
My question is this:
I am from the UK & I wondered whether anyone could explain what the instant pudding is? I have found a recipe without this, but I wondered if it makes it taste better?
Over here we have instant puddings which we call angel delight (which are mixed with cold milk), but there are only a few flavours, or there are hot instant custard (vanilla only, but is very yellow) or blancmange (again in only strawberry or chocolate). The custard & blancmange is cornflour based & the angel delight is maltodextrin based. Are any of these suitable?
I would like to find a recipe for a regular sourdough bread loaf using this starter. Sweet bread baked every 10 days gets boring to me.
But a sourdough loaf for soups or dinner meals would be helpful. Is there a recipe for this out there? I haven’t been able to find one so far on the internet. Thanks!
I bet your angel delights are the same thing as our instant puddings. Ours come in small boxes, around 3 ounces in size, and are mixed with cold milk as well. The brand for them is Jello, they’re a gelatin product. Hope this helps! We have them in all flavors, as you’ve probably figured out after reading all the comments. I really like the butterscotch the best, but there’s so many great ones. I’m so glad you found the site, Rachel!
Dayna, great question, and I know Cena is looking for one too. I have a sourdough starter recipe, much recommended, that I’ve been meaning to post here forever, only problem is, I wanted to try it out first. 🙂 I’ll try to post it regardless, in the next week…when I do, I’ll mention it on this thread.
Rachel, I never add the pudding. The bread still turns out great. It was the added cost and the chemicals/flavorings/colorings that made me try it without.
I’ve been perfecting a french bread recipe at our house, and I really need to research and try a sourdough starter.
http://www.recipezaar.com/52289 for the french bread
Recipe Zaar is one of my favorite websites for recipes.
Okay, I just researched and this is the sourdough starter I’m going to try: http://www.recipezaar.com/13750
Will anyone try it with me? Mary, let us know the one you’ve been given, too. I like to try recipes that others already know they like…
Then the bread I’m gonna try in 4 days or so is this one: http://www.recipezaar.com/13716
Thanks, Cena, I’ll look them up. 🙂 In the meantime, here are a couple of links. I’d forgotten that I did post my sourdough starter recipe on my blog last year…here is the link: http://homesteepedhope.com/2006/10/09/sourdough-starter-recipe/
And then I followed it up with some recipes to use with it:
The one I want to post on soon is a no-knead one that a reader emailed me last year…it looks soooo good, I will share it here this week, even if I don’t find the time to try it myself first.
I saw comments about metal but didn’t see if it is safe to eat if stirred with metal. I used a metal spoon and whisk on day 10 just before separating and baking. Is the concern about it rising or being safe to eat?
Jen, sorry I’ve been awol here at the blog all weekend…I’d think your baked bread would be fine to eat, but you might watch your starter and make sure that it “ferments” properly. I’ve always wondered just how touchy that “metal” rule is, having never broken it myself!
Let us know!
To whom this may concern. I have 8 bags of starter I what to know how long do you freeze it for. And when you thew it out do you start do you start from day one up to day 10. Please email me back. Thank you ms jeff burkett
Hi there, Ms. Burkett,
One lady mentioned on this thread that she freezes hers for up to a year with no problems, in fact, she only bakes hers up at Christmas time each year, then sticks her starter in the freezer until the next December. As for what day to start in on once you thaw them, you just need to make a note on your Zip loc bags as to what day you were on when you froze them. Then start in at that day in the process.
Best of luck,
I have been trying to read all the comments about the bread to find the answer to my Q, but its just too much. I “started” the recipe and have followed it exactly. I am on my 5th day on the ziploc bag part. I was wanting bread for Easter Sunday. Do you think it’d be okay to “Feed” today (day 5) and bake on day 8?
Tiffini, there are a lot of comments on this post, I don’t blame you for giving up! Go ahead and bake it on day 8, it will be fine. This recipe has a lot of flexibility!
Did I ruin my starter? I have no idea what I was thinking but I added the ingredients on day 3 instead of day 6. Will this be ok? I have kept doing the squishing and going on as the directions say in the meantime. I am due to bake this Saturday. Thanks for any help!
Tandra, just keep squishing and going on, as you say you are. This starter is extremely forgiving. You could probably bake a day or two early, w/o any problems. Good luck!
Question: I accidentally added 1 cup of water instead of 1 cup of milk on Day 5. Does the recipe require milk (is there some enzyme in the milk that triggers a reaction), or is liquid the key ingredient?
Ooh, Sue, that question stumps me. I’m not sure if water will do the trick, but if I were you, I’d give it a shot. Please let us know how it turns out. I wonder if you could add a third of a cup of dry milk to the milk you’ll need to add on baking day? That might replace the milk at least, w/o adding more liquid. I know my ratio for mixing up milk is 1/3 cup of the dry milk to 1 cup water.
Wish I was more help, but seriously, please let us know how it turns out!
Thought I would let you know that my mistake did not ruin the starter. (adding on day 3 instead of day 6)
I did as you suggested and baked on the 8th day as well.
My bread turned out just fine. Thank you for you help.
Thanks, Tandra, for the follow up! I’m sure this question will come up again, so it’s good to know! I appreciate it, and am glad your bread was a success!
I am getting ready to do make my 4th and 5th round off my original start given to me. Like everyone else have tried using different things from blueberries to dried apricots all have been great. Big question can I use Splenda instead of sugar?
Splenda is supposed to be completely interchangeable with sugar. I’ve never subbed it for the sugar in this recipe, but I don’t see why it wouldn’t work. The nice thing with AFB, is you have plenty of starter to experiment with!
Wow, I attempted to read this entire thread of posts, but just couldn’t do it. Mainly because I had several questions upon finding this blog, but have now forgotten them all, save one. Can you use brown sugar instead of sugar, or maybe interchange, half and half? I’m thinking maple syrup flavored bread and the brown sugar would just make it yummier. I am on day 10 today so am getting ready to start baking when I get home from work. I will have some very happy employees tomorrow when I get to work. I am only saving enough starter for myself and baking the rest.
Mary, this site is fantastic. I am 8 weeks pregnant and starting to crave EVERYTHING!! So the thought of all the varieties of things that can be added to this bread is making my pants feel a little tighter.
Thank you for such a great place to learn new things and make great friends (which I hope to do).
Christy, your comments warm my heart! I’m so glad you found me here, and yes, substitute the brown sugar, or half and half it, it will turn out just fine. Sounds like a yummy combo! I like to bake up almost all the starter too…don’t know if you saw in any of the above comments that the starter itself actually freezes quite well, just keep track of what day in the process you froze it, so you can pick up where you left off when it thaws.
Congratulations on your pregnancy! That is the best news, will this be your first? Please come back, we’d love to get to know you better.
This will be my third pregnancy. I have two boys, 7 and 11. We are thinking pink this time round.
Anyhoo, I baked last night. I only kept out two starters and made 4 loaves. I made banana walnut and pistachio. The banana walnut was a huge hit with my hubby. He could stop eating the batter lol. The pistachio was pretty good too, although I’m having a tough time eating green bread lol.. We kept one of the two starters on the counter to start again and froze the other. I went to the store and bought so much pudding the cashier looked at me like I was crazy..
I noticed in a comment from late 07 about the “diabetic friendly” idea. I went online yesterday and did some research. I found a product called Stevia, it’s not approved by the FDA yet as a sugar substitute, but it is listed as a dietary supplement and is sold online and at health food stores. It’s got a really high concentration of sugar flavor, so 1 cup of sugar would only convert to 1 teaspoon or 1 tablespoon, I can’t remember which. I went ahead and ordered some to try, so I’m sure I will have to tweak the recipe a bit. Mary, do you have any suggestions since I will be omitting the full cup of sugar? Won’t that make my starter come up short?
Definitely looking forward to hanging out here on a regular basis Mary.
Hi again, Christy!
I have three girls, 10, 7, and 3.5…and they are all begging for another sibling, preferably a boy. I told them the sex is not negotiable! 😉 Plus, daddy is not at all sure he can keep up with the three we have…so we’ll see!
Yum, your bread sounds delicious. I’ve got a bag of starter on my counter and I was going to browse the above comments to get inspiration on a new flavor or two to try. I like the idea of baking it in a 9×13″ baking dish, like cake.
You know, we discussed stevia on another thread, and one of my good friends said she used Stevia both while pregnant and nursing with no adverse affects. She also mentioned that it’s available in the powdered form…which might go over better in baking. Here is the link to the discussion:
As far as how to make it work with this recipe, I’d like to experiement with some and let you know. Unfortunately, trips to the health food store don’t happen often enough for me, as there isn’t one local. I should just order some online!
Let me know if you try it, and how it turns out, and I’ll do the same!
Sleep well, and have a great weekend!
[…] one has time to browse the 273 comments at my original Amish Friendship Bread post to find answers to their questions, so in an effort to put all my Amish Friendship info into one […]
Ahhh!! This is the first time I ever got a starter before in my entire life.
First of all if I were to be daring and try to make this “stuff” I should follow the starter instructions, then at the end, divide it up and send the recipe instructions …..(do (almost) nothing but squish the bag) to friends, right?
I was assuming that this was some secret recipe that only the Amish had and they sold or gave out starters …. apparently I was wrong 🙂
And, how can one starter (from my original starter)be given to one person, then they add milk ….etc. be divided and handed out …….they THEY add milk…etc. be divided and handed out…….and the process go on?Wouldn’t what was in my original batch eventually….. be gone, through the process of continually starting this bread from someone else starter??
Sorry if this question has already been asked. I could force myself to read through all the comments.
~By the way you have a wonderful site!! 😉
Thanks for taking time to comment, Chandra, I’m glad you found us here!
Yes, I suppose over time not much remains of the original recipe, though it’s pretty cool to keep a starter alive for years and years…someone who commented here said her mom kept the starter going for 15 years (I think! Like you, I’m hesitant to re-read all the comments!). I guess enough of the fermentation process happens with each “gifting” that it doesn’t really matter much!
As far as the instructions, you’ve got it right. Just divvy it up on baking day and give your four bags of starter away with instructions (or give 3 away and keep one back for yourself!)
This last time I baked all but two bags of starter. I kept one, and gave the other one away. I split the remaining starter up for two different recipes and ended up with the equivalent of 4 loaves of bread. It takes two cups of starter per batch, and once you add those day 10 ingredients, you should have a total of 6 cups altogether. (It’s important to note that this is *before* adding the actual baking ingredients–pudding, berries, etc). If you want the compiled version of all the above comments, please follow this link:
Hths, and let us know how you like the bread!
Hello~ Tomorrow is my cooking day and I was wondering if I can just take out one cup so that I can have another starter and then just bake all the rest?? ~I’m running out of people to give the starters to but want to keep the bread alive! :o)
You bet, Jess, just refer to the comment above yours for instructions! 🙂
I did everything right….followed the instructions to a “T” and the bread turned out too gooey…..why? I cooked for an hour, but it seemed like it needed more time???
Not sure why it turned out gooey, but it does seem to take a long time baking. Maybe even more in your oven? Sometimes I even think it’s getting too brown on top, but when it’s still soft in the middle (or fails the toothpick test) I keep it in till it’s done.
Sorry it flopped on you!
Better luck next time?
Mary’s last blog post..Healing Promises Blog Tour
I recieved a starter followed through with the 10 days then divided 4 bags of starters and baked the rest into 2 breads. It has now been 5 days and have not handed out the starters. I was wondering if I could combine 3 of the starters together and make another bread and keep 1 starter to make more and repeat this same process.
Sure you can do that. In fact, I got to where I didn’t give any away, I just made the equivalent of 4 loaves (usually 2 9×13″ panfuls) and kept one starter for my next week’s baking.
You can also freeze the starter, just keep track of what day in the process you were on and then once it’s thawed, resume the process.
You might want to check out this link too:
Some people early in the discusion, around comment 53, asked how to make the bread less cake like. Nobody answered right off, so I thought I would say that in making the bread, I leave out all the sugar except when feeding the starter. When I bake it I use only the two boxes of pudding called for in the origanal recipe.
Thanks for clearing this Q up, Haley, we’ve all been wondering, and I get asked this a lot!
I appreciate the info!
As a follow-up to Haley’s comment about making the bread less cake-like.
I also add no additional sugar to the baking ingredients and I don’t add any of the pudding mix. I do add an additional cup of flour (3 cups instead of 2) to help make up for the missing volume. Mine comes out with a texture that’s between a not-too-sweet coffee cake and bread. I also cut the oil down to 2/3 cup.
Smart to substitute extra flour for the sugar and pudding! Thanks, Robin, for adding to this topic, it’s very helpful to have real-life “been there done that” examples!
I just received my first starter an it was on its day 5 😀
I read a lot of the comments and found a lot of good info. Thanks
I’m pretty new to bread making, in fact I have a bread maker that i use to make bread from time to time.
I was wondering if any one has tried to bake in in a bread maker?
My second question is can you use wheat flour or oat flour?
I appreciate the info!!!
Tough question! My bread machine is so old so I’m really not familiar with what newer bread machines are capable of…I’ve only used mine with yeast breads. If yours came with a recipe booklet that includes quick breads, then I’d adapt this AFB process to that particular recipe and it *should* turn out fine.
Again, on your second question, I’ve not used oat flour in this! Wheat flour can be used interchangeably with white flour, so go for it! Oat flour might be fine also, I haven’t baked with it much, so I really hesitate to answer that!
I hope you eventually give it a try and return here to let us know how it went! Meanwhile, maybe someone subscribed to this thread will reply with a more helpful comment!
Best of wishes,
Is it okay to add ingredients and cook on the 11th day?
Yes, Leah, it’s fine! I’ve done it on the 12th day and later with no probs!
I made a starter from scratch and have made the bread. I kept one of the bags for myself. Can you tell me is the starter ok if it is not bubbling? AT ALL. Should I throw it out and start over?
I found pumpkin spice pudding at the store used in a loaf YUMMMMMMMMMMMMMM!
Monica, I’m so sorry I didn’t see this until now, not sure how you slipped through the cracks! Maybe your starter problems are all worked through by now? Sometimes it doesn’t bubble a lot, but it should bubble some. Give it two or three days to bubble, is my advice, before chucking it!
Janet, YMMMMMMMMMMMMMM indeed and the perfect time of year for such a treat!
I recieved a starter in aziploc Friday and I forgot and left it at work. I will not be back to work (it is a school) till Monday. Will my starter be okay? Will it explode? Do I need to call my boss and have him unlock the building to let me in to get it???? I’m worried.
Oh, Angela, yikes, this comment got lost in my inbox notifications! I do hope the bag didn’t explode! I’m not sure what I would have advised you! Hopefully it was okay. I haven’t noticed the fresh starters filling the bag with pressure in the first couple of days, so it should have been okay. Let us know!
Thanks for the FAQ’s!!! I put my starter away in the cabinet as I didn’t want to have it out on the counter during a Christmas party…and then forgot about it. Oops! I just needed to know what to do since I’m two days late to bake, so I was frantically searching for info on whether all was lost or not. You saved the day.
You are welcome! I’m so glad the info here helped you! Hope you enjoy the bread, it’s wonderful to have on hand over the holidays–so many ways to fix and enjoy it!
I made many batches of the bread last year, but taking care of my mom now who is dying will not allow me to this year. I miss it. Let me address those that are so worried about going over two or three days. It is okay. I have even gone four or five and the bread turned out wonderfully. A few years back, I made it for a whole year after being inspired by visiting Amish country in Pa. Those ladies do not stick to a strict schedule. Somehow, they know how to take a break from it sometimes. They bake most days, but know the starter is still fine if the smell and color are good aftera couple of days.
Also, mine didn’t bubble too much last year but the bread turned out just as good as it did years ago when it seemed to bubble more. Weather, house conditions, and quality of ingredients seems to make a difference. All in all, don’t stress and experiment. Just being off a couple of days honestly doesn’t matter. And, the more you bake, the better you get at it. I have had to throw out a few messes, but learned well from that. The most important thing to remember is not to cook it one minute more than you should. Overcooking is the worst thing you can do for this little wonderful thing. If your oven temp is a little off, you need to compensate the time and LEARN the exact minutes to make it what is should be.
Jeannie, thank you so much for this wealth of encouraging tips and AFB helps! Especially in regards to the concern so many have about it not bubbling. This is good info!
I’m so sorry about your mother’s health…I just stopped and prayed for you and your loved ones, that God would give you grace to handle all this pain and caregiving during the holidays. Hoping you and your mom have some quality time to cherish, as much as possible.
Thank you for your prayers. I have so much respect for you and your website which I visit as much as I can. I wish you were next door to me as so many of us on this website wish you were. You are so sweet and precious and a true woman of God. My mom and I know that the Lord is our true strength. I took her into my home a year and a half ago knowing with her disease that this time would come. Her Bible verse to me to get me through this is 2 Corinthians 3:18: “But we Christians have no veil over our faces; we can be mirrors that brightly reflect the glory of the Lord, and as the Spirit of the Lord works within us, we become more and more like him”. She has truly not only taught me how to live all of these years, but also how to die.
Oh Jeannie, your comment was a gift to read. Thank you! I wish I could meet you all in person also. Wouldn’t we have fun putting faces with stories? I was hoping you wouldn’t take my praying for you wrong, sooooo glad to know you and your mom are Christians, and what an encouragement your mom is, that’s obvious, and it’s evident in your life that she’s handed down her faith torch to you. I know that taking care of your parents especially when they are suffering, is a test like no other. Hope God can whisper peace and joy to your heart through it all, somehow.
Thanks for sharing that verse,
Hello Mary: I wrote to you back in March of this year.
I frozen my bread starter. Now im ready to make the bread. The date i have on my bag is april 29. Now what my ? is do i just go head and put eggs,flour,and sugar in or what to i do. And when you freeze it is it apost ro feel soft. Please email me back. I have 25 starter and i would like to make them for christmas. Happy Holiday. Ms. Burkett
Hi Ms. Burkett!
So you’re ready to roll with your starters! It should be as simple as thawing your frozen starters and picking up where you left off. Did you make a note to yourself as to what day in the process you put them in the freezer?
You asked if it’s supposed to feel soft when you freeze it, I don’t think so…is yours soft? 25 starters! Wow. Good luck with that! You could make a lot of neat combinations and have an AFB tasting party! They’ll make great gifts though!
Btw, a neat way to present quick breads as a holiday gift, is to wrap them in foil or saran wrap, then gift wrap, and then place them on a small-to-medium sized cutting board and use pretty Christmas ribbon to tie the board and the bread together…I’m giving several loaves of quick breads away this year and have been brainstorming ideas of how to present them…
Has anyone tried this recipe using wheat flour rather than white? I am interested in trying to make this a tad more healthy (via wheat flour, apple sauce, etc) and was curious as to whether or not anyone else already has?
Also, I accidentally used metal measuring cups (my recipe/instructions only said metal bowls as a no-no) so I will let you know if it impacts the bread as I intend on keeping one of my starters for myself.
Oh Kylie, I’m going to have to try the ww variation because you are the second person to ask that in recent months. I don’t currently have a starter on hand or I’d try it ASAP. If you do try it, would you let us know how it turned out? I’m not sure why it wouldn’t work…it just might be more dense? Maybe someone else will reply…here’s hoping!
Happy New Year’s!
Whew! I made it all the way through the posts and learned a lot!
I am two days late and am glad it is not too late to make the bread.
One thing I noticed on this site was… the milk is to be warm /lukewarm…I didn’t see that on my “Instructions”.
Does it mess up the starter batch if you pour it in while still cold?
Hi Christie, Congrats on wading through all the replies and tips in these comments!!! 😉 I don’t think it will affect your starter too much…I wouldn’t give up on it! Hope it turns out great for you!
Wow- just finished reading all the comments- I must have been sitting here for hours in an AFB trance! Lol. Thanks to everyone who shared their tips and ideas, especially Mary. This thread has been active for- how long? A couple of years perhaps? What a lovely blog, so glad I found it. I’m a first-timer, tomorrow is baking day… so excited! 🙂
“An AFB trance”–that’s an understatement! Congratulations for wading through all of that! 😉 You are very welcome. I’m always surprised that this post still gets traffic from google searches…yes, October of 2006 is when this post published.
So the big question is, how did your bread turn out? Hopefully great! Would love to hear what kind you made for your first loaf.
Hi again Mary~ my bread turned out really well! Not only was it my first AFB, it was my first bread ever of any kind. Decided to stick with the basic recipe this time around (I usually do that the first time I make something) but will be experimenting in the future. There are so many great ideas to work with here on your site, can’t. wait to ‘play’! I’ll be giving a starter away probably tomorrow…the rest may have to go in the freezer for now. I did read about freezing in this thread, right? Better read again to be sure I’m doing it correctly.
So thank you again. You really do have a wonderful site. Many blessings…..~S
Thank you, Steph! I’m so glad it turned out well for you, it’s a nice treat, one my family has begun asking for again… 😉 Yes, it freezes great, just make a note of what day in the process you are on, and when you thaw it, begin at that day in the process and you’re good to go!
Hope you have a great week, and blessings right back to you!
Can Amish friendship bread be made the day before the 10th day or the day after? I will be out of town on the 10th day.
Yes, you can definitely adjust the baking times to the day before or the day after. This is really versatile stuff. Enjoy!
I just got a batch when I was in VA and brought it home to CO. I added flour to the final recipe before baking to adjust for high altitude and they still fell. Do you have any other suggestions to help with that?
Oh no! I sure don’t have any experience with baking in high altitudes! Maybe someone else will answer this!?
Have you googled it? I’m sorry!
Can I use can apple pie filling? If so, how would I do this?
Hi Lena, you can use chopped apples, but I don’t think apple pie filling would work very well. Good luck!
Yippee! It took me several hours, but I read through all the comments! Thank you so much! 🙂
I was given a starter, baked two glorious loaves, gave two subsequent starters away and just yesterday added the 1 cup each to my remaining two starter bags. Today is day 7 of this round, and I guess I’m on my way to creating 8 new starter bags. I’d like to only bake two loaves on day 10 rather than 4 loaves…I don’t have 4 loaf pans….although, I could do muffins with the second batch (they’re really more like cupcakes)…Anyone know how many cupcakes it makes?
I’m going to freeze the rest. I think I read on one of the posts that if I freeze the starter bags on day 1, I could simply thaw later on and bake the same day, knowing that I don’t need to grow the batter. Correct? (Of course, the last starter bag, I would then grow to create 4 new starter bags.)
Also, since I have 2 bags “growing” right now, if I only want to bake 2 loaves, instead of 4, can I just freeze all of the second bag? You’d think after reading all these comments, I’d have all this straightened out by now, but with all the multiplication going on, I need a mathematical equation to figure it out! lol :p
Mary, thanks for the great site. I look forward to perusing it in the future. But not now…I’m tired of reading. 🙂
Hi Jennifer! It is a LOT of reading, huh! Did you see the link for the Easier AFB? I think it’s in the post above…I’m replying from offsite, so I can’t double check…but wanted to reply before my weekend gets SUPER busy. In the Easier recipe, I share how I halved the “feed” and made less starter…and you can definitely freeze your starter and then thaw it and start back on whatever day you left off. Yes, freeze that second bag, it will work! Be sure to look up that other AFB recipe, and I also did one called FAQs and Recipe Additions for Amish Friendship Bread, in which I compiled ALL the great tips into one post…thus eliminating having to read allllllll the above comments! I have a search feature on my site for Home-steeped Hope articles! Hope you find what you need, and thanks so much for coming by!
Mary (and all the other posters) thanks for all the info! I am on day 7 of my bread, can’t wait to try it!
You’re welcome, Janelle! It’s good stuff! Thanks for taking the time to comment!
I have been making my amish breads without oil! I have subbed 1 cup canned pumpkin or 1 cup unsweetened applesauce and had delish results! Cuts out some of the fat – but no help on the amount of sugar.
Oh yes, it’s SO much better that way, isn’t it? I even sub applesauce for oil in pancakes and other recipes too, works great! Let me know if you do ever figure out a way to substitute the sugar! I do know a better, healthier sub for sugar is Evaporated Cane Juice…but I haven’t gotten my hands on any yet…
Help. I came downstairs last night on my 10th day to make the bread and the ziploc bag was laying on the counter dripping all over the floor. I am guessing a full cup was on the floor? If I measure how much starter I have left is there anyway to then modify the recipe to match the amount. For example am I supposed to be starting with 2 cups or 3 cups of starter for the recipe? Then could I just reduce the recipe in kind? Anyone had this happen? Or should I just pitch it and get a new one down the road?
Oh Jennifer! What a mess, huh! I’ve heard of people’s bags exploding, sounds like that’s what happened in your case. Good reminder to let the air out every now and then after squishing. If you have a cup of starter left, you can go ahead and make bread and then down the road just get starter from someone else, or start your own batch of starter with this recipe above. Here is a link to my Easier AFB directions, in which I reduced the amount of ingredients needed to make it less prolific! http://homesteepedhope.com/2007/03/29/easier-amish-friendship-bread/
HTHs, and better luck next time!
Hi! Today is our ninth day, and this is our second time. The first time we did it, it turned out wonderful. Today, we woke up and found that the bag had exploded (air inside the bag, maybe–but we let it out yesterday!) and it had become gooey and bubbly around the edges. We figuerd that it might be worth it to salvage it, but we don’t know if it will be okay. We don’t want to go out and buy all the stuff if it’s going to turn out bad. And another thing–while cleaning it up we used a metal spoon, and we accidentally left it in the batter for abouut half an hour. Will it still be okay? Thanks!
–Marisa and Kat
I’m glad to hear I can freeze it, I leaving on vacation tomorrow, so I’ll put it in the fridge tonight. I have substituted Splenda for the sugar, you can’t tell, everyone loves it!! My new favorite is to use lemon pudding, lemon juice and poppy seeds, just remember to omit the cinnamon and vanilla.
Hello there, Marisa and Kat,
Hmm…gooey and bubbly is fine but I’m wondering about the metal spoon being in it for a half hour. I would say if it were me, and I didn’t want to throw ingredients out on a risk, I’d just ask around for a new starter. It’s not that you’d get sick using it, I’m just wondering if the metal works in a reactive way that would prohibit your bread from turning out? I really don’t know the science behind the “no metal” rule. Wish I was more help. If your batter is at all pinkish or orang-ish, throw it out! Otherwise, you could always give it a try.
I am on my 4th round of baking the bread. My problem is that I have given away starter bags to all my friends and family who are interested. I only need to keep one bag of starter for myself, so I end up throwing out 3 cups of starter. How wasteful! What can I do to avoid this?
Common problem, lol! You could bake it all into bread and give away the loaves, keeping back the one bag of starter for yourself, and instead of adding so many ingredients, cut them back equally. Did you see the link here for my Easier Amish Friendship Bread? You might want to check out the FAQ post I also did on AFB.
I received my starter from a friend and, of course, did the proper care and feeding. I went away over the Easter weekend and did not have time to make my cake (no care and feeding – just neglect). I left the starter on the counter for three days passed the day I was to bake. My cake was wonderful.
I just finished my third round of loaves! I was looking to see what I had in my cupboards (this is a great way to get rid of all the dried fruits I’ve accumulated over the years…) and I ended up using lemon pudding with 1 C of chopped dates and 1/2 C chopped crystallized ginger (reduced cinnamon to 1 tsp). It’s delicious!
Also, I’ve been keeping my starter in a plastic mixing bowl with a layer of cheese cloth draped over it. This way, I have no chance of my starter exploding.
Hi Mary- I just spent the last few days reading all of these posts! I know the post is title “all you need to know” but I think it might need to be “more than I ever needed to know” lol! I love the site and I love the bread!!
I just made 4 loaves (actually 1 bundt and 2 loaf pans) and they turned out well- I did a cheesecake pudding with choc. chips and macadamia nuts and the in loaves I used the GF International Caramel coffee with a few choc. chips- Talk about DELISH!
Anyway, As you know, the bags keep multiplying and my friends all have a starter now, as Beth said too. I am not really concerned with throwing out starter, but, is there a way to take some out before I add the additional milk, sugar and flour? That milk kills me to throw away- I go through too much around here already! I’d like to keep one starter from each of my original 2 bags, but would like to do so before I feed it. How much starter mix would I take out?
I am working on my second round of AFB. The first batch went well. I went out of town for a couple of days and took it with me. My family thought I was crazy cuz I had to “massage and burp” my bread. Now they anxiously await any new bread I bake. We all love it. I really love all the ideas for different recipes in here and in a couple of days will be ready to tackle my 4 bags of starters. I too do not have many friends, and don’t want to get confused by freezing, so going to bake most of it and keep just a few starters…but going to start giving the bread away in my community which is small. Considering baking up a bunch and donating it to the Community Center for the Elderly. Thanks for all the info on here.
Oh wow! I’m getting behind on replying to this thread–but what a lot of great ingredient tips you guys! Thanks for sharing them. I especially like the idea of using crystallized ginger! And GFIC mix! Wow! We are a bunch of AFB groupies here, huh. No one gets it until they smell/taste a fresh loaf. It’s so good.
Thanks for sharing your tips too! The exploding issue just recently came up in comments on one of these AFB threads, so I’m glad you shared how you “keep” your starter, Diana! And Karen, isn’t it forgiving stuff? Glad it turned out okay. I’ve been messing around with Kefir and Sourdough starter, and they are much the same. Very flexible stuff.
Angie, great way to use up the extra starter/breads. I know they’ll appreciate it.
Annie, I sympathize! In fact, rather than downsizing on your starter, just reduce the amount of flour, sugar and milk you add. You’ll have less starter that way in the end. Enough to bake and keep back for more. Just keep the amounts equal. Did you see my link to the “Easier AFB” post? It’s where I explain how to make a smaller batch with what you’ve got. Basically you just need to feed it every ten days…you don’t have to feed it a cup of each ingredient at a time, you can feed it half a cup, probably even less. Just play around with it. 😉
I made two loaves today, one cranberry pecan in a bread pan and applesauce raisin in small square pan. I brushed about 2 tsp melted butter over the top of the raisin loaf and sprinkled with cinn sugar. YUMMY! I also had only 1 box of cheesecake pudding for the recipe and there doesn’t seem to be a problem and both taste wonderful.
Jeanie, that cranberry pecan sounds great–and even healthy sounding! ;O) All this conversation about AFB is making me want to get another starter going. I’ve been having fun keeping up with my sourdough starter lately, and haven’t done AFB in a while.
Thanks so much for sharing what worked for you!
Ok, good thing I have a large freezer. I took ONE started and made 9 loaves of bread. I am using the smaller loaf pans. But thanks to all the suggestions here, I made 3 pistachio, 3 chocolate and 3 butterscotch. I still have 2 starters left to work with. I am keeping one starter from each. Talk about overwhelming. But I am enjoying it so much and have found it is relaxing to create it. I also have some friends that are starting to get interested with all the excitement and creations I am planning on creating. Thank you for such a great site for friends and fun.
Welcome back, Angie, I hope you stick around, we love newcomers! ;O)
Do you mean you used your whole batch of starter and made 9 loaves??? I can see why you are feeling overwhelmed with all that starter…send your friends here to get even more inspired. I love all the great recipes and tips everyone leaves when they comment. Butterscotch is one of my family’s FAVORITE versions of AFB.
Thank you for your kudos! We do have fun here, and it’s always nice to find another enthusiastic AFB baker! ;O)
Have a great day!
Can you substitute a mixture of (1/2 2%milk and 1/2 nonfat dry milk)for milk in the friendshipbread starter?
Yes, Rene, you can do that just fine. In fact, you can substitute all the milk for nonfat dry milk! Great news, huh!
Hi: I received my starter and plan to bake my first bread tomorrow. The starter was one day old when I got it. I mushed the bag and let the air out, added ingredients along the way and here I am. Aside from air in the bag, I did not notice any bubbling. Is this OK? Before I add the rest of the ingredients, I’d like to check. It has a bit of a soury smell, but perhaps this is the way it should be??? Otherwise, the color is fine. Also, I used fat free milk as that’s all we use in the house. Is this OK? Look forward to your response; I don’t want to make anyone sick if the batter isn’t good. Many thanks!
Hi Debbie, I agree with Henwhisperer…she’s answered a lot of my Q’s on AFB regarding Splenda. You’ll have a normal turn-out with real sugar. Glad you got some goodie out of this batch in the meanwhile though!
Henwhisperer–I heard the same thing about the sugar beets going GMO! Yikes. I don’t know what I’d do without my food buying Co-op for organic foods. Thanks so much for answering Debbie’s question! ‘Preciate it!
Your starter is fine. Many times people have mentioned that their starters are sometimes not bubbly, but they still are alive and work well in the bread. Using fat-free milk is not a problem either. It definitely has a sour smell, but it’s a good yeasty-sour smell. The color sounds good, that’s my only tip off when something is wrong it’s kind of a pink or orange-ish tint. Go for it, I think it will work great and your family will love it.
Have fun baking!
We were given a starter for Amish Friendship bread along with recipes a week or so ago. I have been looking on the web for other versions to try as well. I found your website there doing that. I have actualy 2 questions. They may have been asked and answered, but there were some may postings I figured asking again was easier/faster.
1) Have you seen a cheese/garlic type version and if so what is the recipe.
2) When I was kid ( years and years ago) my family had a “herman”. The only recipe we had was 1 coffee cake type receipe so we made him into muffins, load, bunt cakes etc. We eventually ended up “killing him off” because it became to much. Anyways my 2nd question is- is “herman” and the amish friendship bread the same? the reason I ask is that when looking for recipes for the amish friendship bread I found recipes that use the herman starter- can i just substitute the AFB starter for the herman starter?? We are looking for recipes for “bread” type breads instead of the desert type breads- if that makes sense.
Thanks for the input
Is there anyway to cut down on the ingredients on day 5, then day 10 before adding the rest of the ingredients to make the bread, so you only have 1 starter left instead of 4. I saw somewhere if you just add 1/4 c. of the sugar, flour and milk on day 5 and day 10, then you get 2 cups. Once to bake with and one to make the bread with. Has anyone tried anything like this? I want to keep making the bread, I love it, but you run out of people to give it to. Let me know any ideas that may work or anything anyone has heard.
my question is : when all is said and done with the starter and you make the cake can you use a metal electric mixer to mix it?
Yes, Renee, it won’t hurt it at that point.
I make mine with vanilla soy milk and Splenda. I also you a plastic chinese chopstik to do the mixing. Works well.
I’m surprised it works with Splenda! Thanks for sharing how you do it.
My good friend left a ziplock bag inside a brown bag at our home for my daughter, 5 days ago. Unfortunately my husband was the only one home, he took the bag REFRIGERATED IT!!! AND forgot to tell us about it.
I just came across it while cleaning the refrigerator.
The dough looks white, smells like yeast and it’s consistensy more on the liquid side.
My question is … the instructions say not to refrigerate… does this mean this starter is ruined?
and IF not ruined, do we follow the instructions for day 5?or day 1?
No worries! What you’ve got is Amish Friendship Bread “delayed” starter! You’ve only slowed the fermenting process by refrigerating, not killed it. It should be just fine when allowed to go to room temperature and proceeding as if you are on day 3 instead of day 5. In fact, I’ve heard of people putting their starter in the fridge to slow down the fermenting process during a particularly busy week when they know they won’t get around to making it. I’ve never personally done this, so I can’t 100% say it will work as normal, but it should. I keep Kefir on hand, and when I want a break from it, I stick it in the fridge to slow down the fermenting. It still ferments, but not as quickly. Same idea with AFB starter.
So go ahead and put it on the counter and pretend you are on day 3. Check back here and let us know how it worked. :O)
Okay…problem. I am doing the Amish Friendship Bread for the first time (received a starter bag and directions from my friend last week. I’m on day 6 (the day, according to my recipe) that I’m supposed to add the flour, sugar and milk. However, my directions did not say anything about HEATING the milk before adding it to the bag and unfortunately, I just added them and THEN read on here that you’re supposed to heat it. Did I ruin it…do I have to start all over?? Can I heat the bag in the microwave with all the ingredients in it? HELP!!!
Hayley, there is no problem! You are NOT supposed to heat the milk except when making the initial starter from scratch. The recipe at the beginning of this article, is for starter from scratch. What you have is a bag of starter someone has given you…in this case, you simply add your flour, sugar and milk–no heating necessary! So don’t put the bag in the microwave, you will ruin the starter! You have done everything right, I promise! ;O)
Hope it turns out great for you!
After the started is frozen, what is the thawing process and when do you start squishing and adding ingredients?
This is a popular question today! On another AFB thread here, I have a similar Q&A going. :O) Hopefully when your starter was frozen, you made a note on the bag as to which day in the process it was frozen. After determining that, simply thaw it at room temp on your counter and pick up where you left off. Nothing special to the process! Good luck!
I love this bread. My 6 year old is going to use it for a science fair project this year. Does anyone know where I can find info about the science of this process. Also last time we used Banana pudding mix and added choc chips and nuts, This time we are going to try choc pudding and peanut butter chips. Thank You!
It seems so “Un-Amish” because it isn’t really an Amish recipe. It’s just called that…for some odd reason.
Hi Mary, you’ve just posted a very good detail on Amish Friendship Bread Starter. Thanks that you’ve shared this blog. I’m just curious what’s the difference between using a wooden spoon from a metal spoon when it comes to stirring the starter. Is there any benefit you can get from using a wooden spoon? Because as for me, it sounds like a superstitious belief.
I have no idea, Peggy! I wouldn’t be surprised if it wasn’t of Amish origin!
Thanks, Breadmaker! I’ve heard from several places that the fermenting process of the friendship bread reacts to metal…not sure of the chemistry behind that, but I’ve heard the same thing with my kefir (which is also a fermented product)…maybe someone else reading this thread can add their 2 cents? Sorry I’m not much help!
Hi there! I was just wondering something. Yesterday, was Day 10 for me to split the starter and bake. I was not able to do it yesterday.
Have I ruined it now, throw it away or is it still ok to add the ingredients and bake today?
Help! I sure can you some feedback here.
You’re fine to bake, Valerie…this is a hard recipe to mess up. This is probably the number one question asked in all these 360 comments…one day more or less doesn’t affect the bread’s safety or quality at all. So go ahead and enjoy!
I started a starter tonight. I didn’t heat the milk because I got a recipe that didn’t have that part in there. Will it ruin my batch? Also I was wondering can I add the extra cup of flour, sugar, and milk on the 4th day and bake it? I want to give it to some friends before Thanksgiving is over.
Dear Anonymous…I suppose if your recipe didn’t have the part about heating the milk, then you’d be okay. Baking as early as the 4th day might be a bit too soon. One or two days earlier isn’t a big deal..but you do want it to have time to ferment and do its thing! If you didn’t get this in time, and have already baked, please let us know if it worked…I’ve never tried to bake that early…thanks!
Yours is just wonderful site, I found You a couple of days ago and now I am hooked…
Back in May Sandra asked about Herman (or Hermann as it is spelt in German)and if it is the same as AFB starter. The answer is yes, they are basically the same, although Hermann is kept in the fridge and fed with half a cup of sugar each time. There are also three brothers of Hermann, Robert and Siegfried, they are wheat based starters with a bit less and even much less sugar and buttermilk instead of milk.The third brother, Werner, is made from rye for bred.
I know it is a bit late for an answer, but I hope Sandra will find it (useful). :))
Have a great day!
Wow, three brothers to Herman! He sounds easier than AFB. I like the idea of using a wheat based starter with less sugar! Will have to look into that. Thanks so much for all the details, Reka! Hope Sandra gets this!
Today is day 10 and instead of keeping starters, I’m dividing up the mixture and baking all of it. How long will the baked bread keep in the refrigerator? I’m giving it as gifts and would like to keep it for about 10 days. Or should I freeze it (the baked bread) instead?
Thanks and Merry Christmas!
Faye, if it were me, I’d freeze it and thaw it the night before gifting. That way your recipients can enjoy the taste of fresh baked bread. And it won’t go stale on them, or get mold spots if they don’t eat it in the first 2 days. I’d only refrigerate it a week tops before using it up. What lucky friends and family you have! ;O) Merry Christmas!
Hi I just finished reading all the posts and found a lot of great info but I’ve got a question that I haven’t seen yet. I’ve made this bread several times but not for years now. I am currently on day 7 and it smells like beer and when I woke up this morning it was seperated into a clear oily looking mess in the bottom of the bag and bread looking dough on top. It mixed back up fine when sqished but now I’m worried about. Is it still good or should I toss it. Thanks so much for any help you cab offer.
Misty, it was probably fine…I realize this is too late to be of help to you…I’m sorry! Did you go ahead and bake? Hope so!
When you choose to make the entire batch (9 loaves or so) to finish off the starter… do you still add the
1 cup oil
½ cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
before dividing it into 4 separate bowls? Or do you simply divide the starter into 4 separate bowls and then begin mixing and baking?
Love the details in this! Thanks!
Danica, I’m so sorry I let this question fall through the cracks…I will blame it conveniently on the holidays! It’s probably too late for you, but if you are going to bake up the whole batch, then you would need to adjust the bread baking recipe to accommodate more batter. For instance, you’re supposed to remove 3 cups to give away to friends, so after 3 cups are removed, how much batter is left? 3 cups? Or less. I’ve done this before, but didn’t keep track of the math. HTHs!
Jody, thanks so much for sharing your favorite combos! They all sound good. And you sound like an adventurous cook! Appreciate your tips!
Hello, I have made so many variations of the bread that I have had so many people wanna buy it from me. I enjoy baking and You are so right when you say this is a fogiving recipe.
White chocolate Amaretto
I just look in the cupboard and use dry ingredients for the pudding and substitute wet items for the oil
I have NEVER had a bad bread yet…… Enjoy
this website is wonderful!! My guestion is: my starter is bad…how do I make a “New” starter??? I have checked the web and they have given me 3 different recipes? I don’t know which one is right – but I know that you would know!! Please help!! We are having withdrawels!!!!!
Thanks, Bobbi! This recipe IS the “from scratch” recipe for a new starter. And also, you might want to check out the link in this post for Easier Amish Friendship Bread…it makes a smaller batch, which I find more feasible to use on a regular basis!
Hope this helped!
Day 1: Do nothing.
Day 2: Mush the bag.
Day 3: Mush the bag.
Day 4: Mush the bag.
Day 5: Mush the bag.
Day 6: Add to the bag: 1/2 cup of flour, 1/2 cup of sugar, 1/2 cup of milk. Mush the bag.
Day 7: Mush the bag.
Day 8: Mush the bag.
Day 9: Mush the bag.
Add 3/4 cup of milk, flour and sugar. Mix well. Remove 1 cup of the batter into a new bag.
To the remaining batter add:
1 1/2 cups oil (or use 1/2 oil and 1/2 applesauce)
3/4 cup milk
1 1/2 cups sugar
3 tsp. cinnamon
3/4 tsp. vanilla
2 1/4 tsp. baking powder
3/4 tsp. baking soda
3/4 tsp. salt
3 cups flour
1 large box of instant vanilla pudding.
This will make three smaller loaves or two large loaves, or you can make muffins. Grease the bottom of the pans and sprinkle with sugar and cinnamon. Pour batter into pans and sprinkle the top with sugar and cinnamon. Bake at 325 about and hour for bread loaves or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool until the bread loosens from the pan easily.
This is a great variation! Thanks SO much for sharing it. I’ve posted another link to my Easier Amish Friendship bread, but it’s based on starting over from scratch, not reducing the starter you’ve already got. LIKE this! Thanks, Amy!!
Does anyone know why the bread would fall in the middle? I made this bread a few weeks ago and as soon as I took it out of the oven it completely sank in the middle. It still tasted delicious (made a white chocolate lemon cheesecake flavor) but it was so disappointing. I live in a high altitude (Utah) and I even adjusted my second batch to high altitude and it did the exact same thing! Any suggestions as to why this happens? Any help would be greatly appreciated!
I made my own starter and there’s way more than the 1 cup that I would have received from someone to start this bread, is this correct?
I don’t want to give starters away, can I freeze the dough, after adding the 10th day ingredients(flour, sugar & milk), then just thaw and bake at a later date?
Also, after taking out the 4 1 cup starters, how much dough is left in the bowl to make the bread?
Hi Vera, I’m sorry I didn’t get you answered sooner, it’s been busy at my place! Yes, you can thaw your frozen starter and pick back up on the process at whatever point you left off of it when you froze the starter. ;O) As far as how much starter is left in the bowl…it’s been a while since I measured it out, but I think I mentioned that specifically in my Easier Amish Friendship Bread recipe (there is a link to that in this post)…but you’ll have to keep in mind the recipe ratio I used for the Easier AFB version is (half as much?) as this one, so it would be double whatever is left in the bowl. Make sense?
Thank you, Marvelle!!! ;O)
Anna, the fermenting process is important–and that is what happens over the ten days of squishing, etc. Going two days earlier or later doesn’t seem to affect the turn-out though. HTHs!
This was probably the most informing web site I have ever come accross.
I didn’t stop until I had read everyone of them.What wonderful ideas you and your readers have!!! I panicked when today j/when I realized each of my (9) starters is ready to be handed out with no one to hand them too. So here I am learning about freezer time. I’ll make it alright but I also picked up a few great recipes. I’ve also make different flavors, but getting some new ones was great. Thank you again!!!
Love and good cooking from my kitchen to yours,
My mother made this bread often when I was younger, and I just discovered it a couple weeks ago and did it myself. It was amazing..I haven’t seen this question so I want to ask…If you get the starter, add all the day 10 ingredients, does it really make a difference whether it sat out for 10 days or not? What happens if I don’t let it sit for 10 days?
Hi, okay this is my first time making the amish freindship bread. My question is, if your bag pops, is it still okay to make the bread with the remainings?? Not alot fell out of the bag I still have lots of dough in the bad… I’m supposed to be making it today which is my 10th day..
Hi Amy–I think I missed this–I am sure sorry. If you can salvage the remains, it should be fine. Sometimes the pressure builds and this happens…esp if you leave any air in the bag. I try to squeeze all the air out before sealing the baggie. Again, I’m sorry I didn’t respond in time to help you on your baking day. I hope you went ahead.
Is there any way to just bake what I have, and not separate it into “friendship” bags? I have been looking everywhere, but I can’t find instructions for just baking what I have..
Yes…you could use the recipe I’ve posted here: http://homesteepedhope.com/2007/03/29/easier-amish-friendship-bread/ which calls for 1 cup of starter per recipe. Just measure out how many cups you have altogether and figure up the ingredients times that amount. Should work great!
I’M TRYING TO MAKE THIS RECIPE, NEVER DONE IT BEFORE. I THINK I MESSED UP WHEN I ADDED THE MILK ON DAY FIVE. I FORGOT TO WARM IT. WILL IT STILL COME OUT OK
Yes, it should be fine!
We use whole wheat flower, and our bread has turned out wonderfully.
I received a starter batch without a date? How do I know when its ready?
Kim, I’ve become a huge fan of ww flour since I first wrote this AFB post! Thanks for sharing how you love it in this too!
Rachel…I don’t know…I guess just assume your day one was the day you received it, and go from there with the directions on this site? Hth!
very excited to try my first round of AFB (which reads Air Force Base to me every time)!
one of the girls at work brought in several starters and i jumped at the chance to get one.
i’m not much of a sweet tooth, so i will be doing some experimentation with the savory recipes people have offered.
i have read all of the posts on here, and Mary, you have the patience of Job to answer all of those questions! i thank you for doing so, it took some time and a few notes but i now feel confident to go out and make some bread.
if my first tries go well i’m going to experiment with some herbed varieties!
Hi Karin Elizabeth! Btw, I love your name–someone in my family shares the exact same with you! ;O) Glad you found the tips helpful, there are a ton to wade through. I have another post on this site where I compiled all the tips from this comment section into an easier to read format–you could find it under a search for “FAQ Amish Friendship Bread”…
Please come back and share your savory bread successes–love to hear all the things this versatile bread is good for!
Just wanted to say I was a little hesitant about baking my bread since, by day 10, it had a very tangy yeast smell, almost like beer?! (Hard to explain) Anyway, it wasn’t a weird color so I went ahead and baked it and it was DELICIOUS!! Thanks for this website. It’s been very helpful!!
I just started my starter today. But before I found this website here I saw one site that says to do this: one pack of yeast, 1/4 cup warm water, 1 cup flour, 1 cup sugar and 1 cup milk. Now I see that on this site it says to use 3 cups each flour, sugar and milk. What’s the difference? Also it told me to mix my flour and sugar well or when milk is added flour will be lumpy. I mixed and mixed for over 10 mins and when milk was added it still came out lumpy? Is this going to affect anything?
Hi Jessica, I’m sorry I’m just catching up on blog correspondence. Hopefully your starter is well on its way. I can’t tell from your post if you used this recipe here, or the one with the yeast? My recipe posted here is the only way I’ve started AFB, so that’s a question to ask the folks that posted the yeast starter. My AFB batter is on the lumpy side and never causes a problem. I know I don’t mix it, I just squish it together in the bag. Hope that helps you out for the next time around!!
I accidently put my second starter in the refrigerator and let it overnight. Took it out in morning. Will it still be okay?
Helen, I think it will be fine…go ahead and try it!
I just made my first batch of AFB today using a slightly different recipe. I came across your site while browsing the web. A lot of really good information has been posted here over the years. I just wanted to share some information with you guys: My mother made this for probably a year using the baggie method, and, thankfully, she never had any explode, but I have read a good suggestion elsewhere which I took to heart today: Double-bagging. My starters are all in ziploc bags which are sealed in an additional ziploc bag. So, if your inner bag pops, then you have another bag to hold in your starter. When I first made the starter, I actually kept it in a gladware container with a lid. It seemed to work ok, but I wanted to wash the container so I went ahead and put all the new starters in baggies. Other airtight (metal free) containers will work so long as you can squish or stir, and have room to “feed”. Thanks for keeping this site going!
I have read all your replies and they answered a lot of my own questions, except 1. I froze all 4 divided cups on the day I was to give them away, I want to thaw them one at a time to bake for myself and when I get to the last one, I want to start that at day 1.
Can this be done? Can I thaw the starter and bake it the same day?
thanks for your help
Hi there, Pat–yes, you can thaw the starter and bake it the same day. I love that you can freeze this stuff! HTHs!
I just put a bag of starter in the freezer on Day 10… instead of feeding and breaking the into four 1-cup portions. Can I take the bag out of the freezer on a later day, feed, then break into the four 1-cup portions? Please advise. Thank you!
Yes, you sure can, Donna! Just let it thaw completely first. :O) Enjoy!
Hi I received the started friday and I did not know what to do with it because I did not get the steps to follow, so I refrigerated the batter. So is it going to work? Or is it ruin? And I should I start as friday day 1 or today that I received the steps?
I’m sorry I didn’t see this sooner, for some reason, I’m not getting email notifications anymore when people comment at the site. So I hope you just plunged in and started as if it was day 1. It should be okay. Refrigerating it for just a couple of days, shouldn’t have stalled it out. Maybe you can report back here with the results?
Hope this wasn’t too late to help,
Question: After breaking into four one cup portions, can I freeze the portions and for how long???
Thank you for your help and it’s a great cake.
Yes, you can freeze the portions…I’ve heard that some people freeze them for up to a year, but other say no more than 6 months. I’ve never frozen it for long. When you are ready to pick back up with making AFB, just thaw them completely and go from there. :O)
Can you still make the bread if you are 4 days behind. Thank you for your help
Hi there Gloria and Joan,
First, Gloria, I apologize that I didn’t see this comment sooner. We’ve had a few busy days here, and not much time online. Are you 4 days behind on feeding/baking the starter? And have you been squishing it every day? If so, I think you’re okay to go ahead and bake. Smell the starter and if it doesn’t look right or is slightly orange or pink, throw it out and start over. Hope it works out for you!
Joan, thawed starter can be used for either…just treat it as if you are picking right back up where you stopped when you froze it. :O)
Hope this helps,
Mary I forgot to check the box that say to notify me of followup via e-mail. Thanks for your help. gloria
Can you make new starter from a thawed starter or can the thawed starter only be used to bake a friendship bread right away?
Hi Mary….how do you store the baked loaves as in an air tight container or in the fridge in saran wrap?
They do best in the fridge, either wrapped in saran or in an airtight container. If your loaves disappear w/in hours after baking…then room temp doesn’t hurt anything either. ;O)
Is there a way to make savory bread this way?
You know, Michelle, I’ve had people ask this before. I’m not sure. I might have to search that out, and if I find anything, I’ll post about it! :O)
I understand that intially I can’t stir with metal or use metal bowl, but when I get to day 10, after removing 3 cups of starter for friends, is it then ok to use beaters to mix all ingredients together? Mixture is very lumpy……And is that starter that I’ve put in seperate ziploc bags on day 1 immediately or does day 1 start the following day?
Yes, Athena, when you are mixing it all up into your bread, at that point it’s fine to use metal beaters, etc. Day 1 for the brand new starter bags begins the next day…Day 10 you fed them, and then the cycle begins anew the next day!
Hope this helps!
Can this starter be used for regular sourdough bread?
No…it’s different, more for sweet bread. There is a different recipe for sourdough on this site though, if you wanted to start from scratch. I’m assuming you already have AFB starter and want to switch gears?
I was given a Herman starter today (Wednesday). I am to be bringing morning tea on Day 9 (Thursday). Would it work to bake it then (instead of Day 10)?
Hi Irene, I’m not the one to ask on the Herman starter…having never tried it. Maybe someone else will chime in and answer your questions…
can I make the 10 day recipe in 7 days? I’ve made this before doing the 10 day cycle, but I forgot to start it for thanksgiving and wondered if 7 days will yield the same results?
Hi Tracey and Freida, I’m sorry I didn’t get you answered before now…this week’s been a whirlwind of getting ready for Thanksgiving and company coming! I’m sure you’ve decided to plunge in by now and either bake your bread or toss the starter. Tracey…I’ve only gone over the 10 days in baking, not under, but I do know that going a day or two early doesn’t hurt it…3 days might be pushing it a bit? It’s anyone’s guess till you guinea pig it and let us know! Freida, it’s fine to go a couple days past the 10 days, as long as you squish it, etc.
Again, I’m sorry I am replying so late, probably too late for your situations.
Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!
I did not bake my bread right after the 10 days its still sitting out. Is it still ok to bake it and eat it.
I had some starter I froze on day one. I thawed it and got all the way to day six before I realized I didn’t have everything I needed to keep going, so I put it back in the freezer. Will it thaw ok a second time?
Hi Katryna, I’m not sure. I’ve never refrozen. I’d go ahead and try it though, just thawing and starting in at day 6 where you left off. You might let us know if it turned out or not?
Hope it works out for you!
I tried browsing the comments for my question, but there’s so many. I apologize if you’ve gotten this one already.
I was working on an amish bread starter that I got from someone else. Due to business, I let the starter ferment for three days longer than the recipe said to. The last time I smelled it, it smelled like sourdough. Today, it literally smells like wine. Is the starter ruined? Or will it still work and taste good?
Also- this is my first time with a starter. I used a metal spoon with it today…did I ruin it anyway?
Hmm. Sometimes it is hard to tell if a starter has gone bad. It definitely is supposed to smell fermented, but if you’ve not done very many, you wouldn’t know which kind of fermented it smells like, fermented -good, or fermented-bad. KWIM? Sometimes you can go by the color…if it is a pink or orange, it’s not good, throw it out. To be safe, I’d get rid of it, and ask for another starter. More than likely, your friend has plenty to spare, or knows someone who needs to find takers. :O) Yours has two things against it…the metal spoon, and the strong smell from sitting without being squished. Typically, it can go one or so days without being messed with, but it’s not ideal.
Hope this helps!
Hi, have been given a starter today by my mother.
Have just been reading another thread which has the following comment:-
Recipes that call for milk, cream or eggs in the starter will support the growth of some modern day bacteria. Salmonella, Clostridium perfringens and staphylococcus areus like to grow in dairy products left at room temperature for hours. The modern day version is also refrigerated after 72 hours as an added safety feature.
I am now a little confused as my instruction say this will kill Herman!
Fridge or no fridge? That’s the question! Would love to read your comments.
Hi Kerry. You know, I find your comment very thought provoking. Our family switched from store milk to raw milk 2+ years ago, because we’re convinced pasteurized/homogenized milk is dangerous to drink. I have never thought about it in terms of Amish Friendship Bread before now. Duh. Store milk is full of dead bacteria, b/c pasteurization kills ALL bacteria, good and bad, but it doesn’t remove it. So there are no good bacteria or enzymes in it to grow and overtake the bad. I can see why “modern” day bacteria might thrive if left on the counter for several days. If it makes you feel better, I made plenty of AFB with store milk for years and we never got sick eating it. But it does give me pause…and make me more thankful for yet another reason to go raw! ;O)
You can try it in the fridge, and see if it works. Would love to hear the results, if you wouldn’t mind stopping back by.
I am left with much more starter because the recipe math does not work out, I am left with much more than it says I should have. I feel like I am doing math from the movie “Clue”.
Ha…not sure what to tell you Dave! Maybe your starter is really fertile? :O) Happy baking!
I put a starter in the freezer for me to use at a later date and then took out and left on counter. I thought I first heard it had to sit out for 10 days before you start doing anything but I have only heard just now online that you start doing the process after it is thawed. Seeing I am on day 8 without doing anything (adding or mushing), it probably isn’t any good now?
Hi Natasha, I would guess it’s probably safer to pitch it after 8 days. Bummer. Hopefully you have more in the freezer?
Jamie, I’ve only gone a couple days over the 10 day cycle with my AFB, and it’s always been fine. So beyond the 21st…it might be iffy. Can you bake it on the 19th and freeze it to pull back out fresh on the 24th?
Sorry I’m not the bearer of good news for you ladies today!
Hi, My bread will be ready for baking on the 19th. Will it be safe to leave it on the counter and continue to squish it for baking on the 23rd or the 24th?
I’ve had my starter for about three months and until today, everything was fine. This is baking day and when I added the flour, sugar and milk to the starter before separating it into 1 cup portions, I mistakenly used a metal spoon. After a moment, I realized what I had done, removed the spoon, and finished combining it properly, without a metal spoon. Have I ruined the starter that I saved?
I am going to freeze the starter for AMB for the first time. For those of you who have done it all ready, how did it turn out?
Thanks ~ Kristin
Speaking for myself, Kristin, it turns out great after freezing, and many others have said the same. So you should be good to go!
Ruth, I’m not sure what to tell you. I know using metal is a no-no with AFB, but it’s been years since I researched “why exactly”! I just never use metal, so haven’t had a problem. If I were you, I’d google it till I found the answer. You might get some tips on what to look for to see if your starter is ruined. Things like color and smell.
I have the Amish Friendship Starter and would like to make a 9×13 cake with it. What recipe(s) would you suggest and how long do I bake the cake? Do I have to use a glass cake pan? Thank you.
Hello again Colleen! It’s a great idea to use the AFB batter to make a cake. I’m sure any of the recipe additions mentioned here or at the FAQs and Recipe Additions for Amish Friendship Bread post found elsewhere at this site would work nicely. A glass cake pan is not necessary, and baking times would vary. I would begin checking the cake at 25-30 minutes, and then at 5 minute intervals till a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Hope this helps!
I used Splenda instead of sugar in my starter and after reading your notes added one cup of sugar after two days. Have I messed up the recipe? Will I have bread out of this confusion? I thought Splenda could be used instead of sugar. Thank you for your help.
Angela, go ahead and add ingredients if it’s only been a day or two. Should be okay!
Heather, I’ve never used self-rising flour on this…so my best advice is to google it and see what others have to say? Sorry I’m not more help!
Joan, so you read at the FAQs post for AFB, that the yeast will not recognize Splenda as sugar, right? I’m not sure if the Splenda being in there will affect the outcome now that you’ve added sugar…my guess is that not adding sugar in the beginning is what will cause problems. Wish I could speak from experience and tell you it will be okay!
Heather, I’ve never used self-rising flour on this…so my best advice is to google it and see what others have to say? Sorry I’m not more help!
Joan, so you read at the FAQs post for AFB, that the yeast will not recognize Splenda as sugar, right? I’m not sure if the Splenda being in there will affect the outcome now that you’ve added sugar…my guess is that not adding sugar in the beginning is what will cause problems. Wish I could speak from experience and tell you it will be okay!
What happens if you used self-rising flour on the Day 7 instead of all-purpose? And will it affect the starters for the friends that I gave it to?
So glad that I found this site, and that you are still patiently answering questions. I read in the comments that the batter, after having been separated into give away batches and frozen, can be thawed and baked the same day. My questions are, 1)once thawed, do you start from day 10 in the recipe adding those day 10 ingredients and then bake? 2)Do I still have to separate the batter into give away bags? 3)Is there a recipe to make enough batter for 1-2 loaves of bread without having give away batter left over? Thanks in advance for your help.
Yes, I’m still here! I never dreamed the Amish Friendship Bread post would draw so many comments, especially so many years later! I love its ability to be frozen, then thawed and reused! B/c sometimes we just need a break from the stuff! It’s demanding! ;O) My answers to your Q’s are as follows: 1) Once thawed, you start from whatever day you froze it…if day 10, then start in right there. And in fact, that’s my best recommendation…to freeze it at one of the big feeding days. But others have reported that it doesn’t matter which day in the process, as long as you make a note on the bag for future reference. 2) It’s up to you. Personally, I would separate the batter and give it away fresh–most people would probably rather get theirs with the option to jump right in, rather than receiving a frozen bag, but then again, maybe they’d prefer it frozen! 3) Check out my post on Easier Amish Friendship Bread It is a recipe for a more manageable family friendly version that after separated for baking, leaves you with enough to make more, or still the option to give away a cup or more to friends of the starter.
Hope this is helpful!
Hello- I have some start thats been in the freezer for a couple of years. Is it still good or have I lost it? Thanks for your help -Anita
I’m not sure! My first inclination is that you’d be better off starting over. 2 years is a long time for anything in the freezer. One gal wrote in a while ago and said she leaves hers in for a year at a time w/no problems…baking it up for the holidays. But you could always give it a go and hope for the best. If you do, and it works, could you come back and let us know?
Thanks so much for your reply, it was very helpful and much appreciated!
You’re very welcome, Carlotta! :O)
Hello, Mary! This time I saved your blog in my favorites so I wouldn’t lose it. I haven’t been on in a looong time but I wanted to post about my latest AFB news. Now, 2 more kids later (for a total of four…we finally got our girl..haha!), I am back at making the Amish friendship bread. I have been making loaves with the same starter from back in February 2007!! So it does freeze very well! I’ve had my latest starter in the freezer for over a year and a half and it still did GREAT when I thawed it out! Here’s a great variation to try if you like chocolate cherry….use chocolate pudding instead of vanilla, add 3 tbs. of cocoa powder, add 1/2 cup more milk and one can of cherry pie filling (rinsed and patted dry) or one can of cherries in water (drained). We like the way the cherries are in the cherry pie filling so I just use those but the cherries in water do fine, too! Soooo yummy!!! I loved reading all of the new posts!
Hi Maria! Congrats on your two new babies and THANK you for sharing your success with AFB in the freezer for 1.5 years! Wow. That is by far the longest we have had reported, here, and I’m sure Anita (if she checks back here) will be glad to hear it too, since she just asked!
Your chocolate cherry AFB sounds delectable! Will have to sic my 14 year old baker on it! ;O)
Nice to see you here again!
Is there a way to make the bread less heavy. I live at a high altitude and the bread is heavy and seems to fall? Thank you for your response.
I’m not sure? Maybe someone else will chime in with an answer. It is a heavy bread, even at a more normal altitude, but mine hasn’t ever fallen during baking. Sorry I don’t have an answer!
Karma Vance, Try only half the pan filled for baking.
Low calorie version: substitute with Splenda for baking. Splenda did not work good in the 10 day fermentation process. You can substitute whole grain for flour, healthy oil varity and do on. Only the starter must be virgin 🙂
Hi Mary- So I asked about the start that was in my freezer for 2 years and I wanted to report back. I am happy to say it worked out fine. The bread baked up just like normal with no problems. Thanks-
Wow! Thanks Anita for updating us! I will file this away, b/c it’s a question asked every so often! 2 years! Amazing!
my daughter brought me this mix and i have to say i was dubious but nurtured it for the ten days i did not pass it on but instead cooked it all i divided the mixture and made a batch with apple cinnamon raisin and pecan nuts (it was amazing) and a batch with banana and toblerone again delicious well worth the effort so now i have cake in my freexer to last some time until someone brings me another batch
When Day 10 arrives – do I have to add the sugar, flour and milk and split it into 4 bags? Can I bake with what I have on Day 10 without adding the extras? I ask because I have 3 bags in the freezer at Day 9 and don’t want to keep freezing or giving away all the time (running out of people!). I can’t bring myself to add those ingredients, split into 4 bags and then have to throw them away. Thanks in advance for any help!!
You can bake the entire batch up on day 10, but you do need to add the sugar, flour and milk before baking. No need to save any back. Your friends or co-workers would probably rather eat up that fresh bread than get a starter anyway! Especially if they’ve already been hit up! ;O)
Hope this helped,
Thanks Mary! So, once I add the sugar, flour and milk, do I have to split it up before adding the rest of the ingredients and then add those ingredients to each one to bake? Or do I add the rest of the ingredients to the “big” batch and then split it up into different pans to bake? I apologize for the questions, but I don’t want to mess it up and have it ruined!! 🙂
No problem on the questions, Carrie, I understand! ;O) Since you would normally be taking 3 cups out of this batch to give away to friends AFTER adding the day 10 ingredients, instead, you will need to measure the total batter (including the supposed 3 cups that you decided not to separate out) and see from that if you need to double or triple your “breadmaking” ingredients. See what I mean? Let’s say you have a total of 6 cups starter when you’ve measured it all, well, that will be simple, just double all your ingredients for the bread you’re going to bake. You can have fun with making different kinds of bread by separating the batter as well. Then just bake it all up and enjoy! Hope this makes sense, let me know if you have further Q’s!
Once you add the milk, shouldn’t you refrigerate it or it will spoil?
Hi Zoe, this is a fermented bread, so actually, contrary to what common sense tells us about milk going bad unrefrigerated, it’s actually okay for Amish Friendship Bread. :O) At least, no one I know has ever gotten sick from eating it, and refrigerating the batter would mean your starter wouldn’t ferment and do its thing.
When you take your friendship bread from the freezer, does this start day one of the process?
Bobbie–it depends on when you stuck it into your freezer. I always make a note as to which day, and then pick up where you left off. So if you stuck it in after you divided it out, then yes, it would be day 1 of your process. HTHs!!
Hello! The recipe that I have calls to add 1 C Sugar, Flour and Milk on Day 6. Then on Day 10 to add 1 1/2 C of each. I was in a hurry and did not read correctly and added to the start 1 1/2 c Sugar Flour and milk on Day 6 and 10 is this going to change my recipe when I bake?
It’s okay, Amy. You’ll just have more starter than you would have, 1.5 cups more. Make more bread, or freeze it for later. Or give it away to another friend. 🙂 Bake with the amount of starter that is recommended in your recipe, and you’ll be fine.
I have about 20 starter bags in my freezer, can i get one of those out and just add all the ingredients and bake all the bread without having to do the 10 day process and not get anymore starter from it? Need help ASAP with this running out of room in my freezer !!!
Hmm…depending on what day in the process you froze the starters, you’d likely be okay to do that. :O) You’ll have to check back in and let us know if it works!
I was wondering on the days after the starter has begun does the milk have to be heated (as it did when you started the starter) or is it mixed in with cold milk?
Thanks a bunch
Nope, just add in cold milk, you will be fine! :O)
On day 10, I added the flour, sugar and milk, divided, and instead of passing on to friends, put in freezer. I made bread from what I did not freeze. My question: Can I just add ingredients for making bread to one of the mixture in one of the bags (after thawing) and then bake? If I can, since there is only one cup of the mixture, should I half the ingredients?
Good question. I always wanted to do this, but never did, so by no means do I have a concrete answer for you, but it only makes sense that it would work just fine to thaw it and add fewer ingredients, depending on how much starter the recipe called for in the first place. Let us know how it turns out!
I used a metal wisk to mix then divided my bags into the starters, forgetting not to use metal. How do I know if I have ruined the starts? It has been almost 24 hours and there are very few bubbles. This was my first experience with this and loved it. Hoping I didn’t ruin it! Any advice?
Hi Nancy, my advice is to wait and see. It might be okay. Your whisk was likely a stainless steel one, so it might be okay. I think sticking with plastic and wooden utensils is the best bet, otherwise. It should bubble more, the longer it sits…what you should watch for is the pinkish-orange tint or spoiled smell. Hopefully all will be well!
[…] my favorite Friendship Bread resources I found in my search was Home-Steeped Hope, which provided this from-scratch recipe for the starter. The same (or very similar) recipe surfaced other places as well, so this is the […]
My question is, once I have baked the bread, how long will it last? I know I can freeze it, but if left out or refrigerated, how long will it hold up?
I am sooo confused. I made the starter tonight. Now do I do the 10 day cycle, then divide it in bags, then do the 10 day cycle again with my bag or can I just go ahead and bake it immediately? The recipe says if you are keeping a starter for yourself you will be baking in 10 days. That means the whole process from making the starter to making the bread is 20 days???
can i freeze the amish friendship bread after i bake it? if so, how long will it last in freezer? will if change to taste?
My apologies Linda, Stacey and Jules…with the holidays and family visiting, I’ve sorely neglected the blog. Let’s see about answering your Q’s, though you have probably learned by trial and error by now. Linda, my rule of thumb for AFB’s storage once baked, is even refrigerated, it should be eaten within 5-6 days. Keep an eye out for “fuzz” (ie: mold) if you want to go longer. Stacey, I’m sorry for the confusion…if you made the starter, then you are to commence with the ten day cycle, ending with baking and beginning another ten day cycle with the starter you saved out. Jules, definitely, you can freeze the bread after baking. If you double bag it in freezer bags, it should last 4-6 months easily.
Hope these answered your questions! Happy New Year’s!
Yesterday was my day 10 and I didn’t add my ingredients like I should have, I didn’t even “mush” my bag. It has just been so hectic with the holidays and we’ve had so many sweets going around, I’m honestly just ready for a break from all of this!
I have 2 questions: #1) am I too late to proceed as if it were day 10 and/or #2) can I put in freezer today and then down the road take it out and act like it is day 10? I am so hoping you come back and tell me #2 is okay. ;0)
You should be okay with thawing it and going forward where you left off once you do. I understand the hectic pace of the last weeks…we’re just now recovering as well! ;O) Did you mush your bag at all? That’s my only concern. It’s okay to miss a day, but as far as guaranteeing the results if you forgot about it on the counter all week…that’s pretty iffy!
Hope it works well for you!
I went ahead and placed my package in the freezer on day 12 without feeding. I would still like to see what you think though. Please respond. Thanks!
On day 10, I want to only end up with one starter to use again and one recipe to make now. I’ve run out of people to pass on to! Have a procedure? I could calculate it, but thought it would be easier if you already have the plan. thanks so much!
Can I refrigerate my batter if I want to? Or will it ruin the bread?
Hi. I made up a batch of sour dough starter, but didn’t discover till too late, that I had put the whole 3 cups of sugar, flour and milk in the batch. I had to separate it into two containers as the starter was working very well. How can I rectify my problem without throwing it all out and starting again? I have been making the bread for years and everyone enjoys it. It makes a great Christmas gift with all the nuts, raisins, chopped apricots and all the other goodies I love to put in it. I am not happy about throwing out 3 cups of King Arthur flour. Thank you for your help.
When I made my starter my directions did not say to heat up the milk. I put regular milk in and it’s sitting at room temp. Did I murder my bread????
No, it should be fine, especially if it’s in a warm place…I’m sorry I didn’t see this in time to help you!
Hello, my mixture is making way too much air. What I mean is I need to open to let air out multiple times a day for about a week now. I started my mixture a few months ago and have shared and made many delicious breads and waffles with it. Should I throw this batch away and start over or is okay to use still? Thanks!
Happy baking <3
Hi Cookie, my first thought is that now that we’re seeing warmer weather and temps in the kitchen, the starter is bound to be more bubbly and active. Do you think that is all it is? I wouldn’t be concerned unless the smell is off, or the color changes. Hope this helps! –Mary
Hi, Mary! It’s been about 4 years since I have been on here and my oldest, who is now 12, asked about “that bread we used to squish in the bag,” the other day. I pulled out one of my starters that has been in the freezer for 4 YEARS and it worked perfectly!! So for all of those who are wondering, you can freeze this starter for a looong time if you need to! Hope things are well!!
Wow! 4 years! That is amazing! AFB is tough stuff! 😉 Thanks for letting us know!
I have oodles of starters in my freezer!! I want to make the whole starter, but unsure as to what ratio to use as far as the recipe. X’s2,4???