Almost Friendship Bread

Amish Friendship Bread

You’ve probably received one. A starter for Amish friendship bread. And maybe you were excited because you’ve wanted to try it and it’s kind of fun and the bread is super yummy. Maybe that’s been you.

If you’ve been at all like me you’ve let your starter die several times. Maybe you forget to feed it. Maybe you forget to squish it. Maybe you just get tired of it. Done! In the trash.

And then you start to wonder – was this really a friendship bread or an almost friendship bread? Because what kind of friend, or potential friend, would inflict another friend with a ziplock bag full of liquid guilt?

It happened to us again a couple of weeks ago. And the funny thing is it happened on the sly. The friend in question had her kids handing out the bags of extra starter. One of the kids kind of ran up to me and tossed the bag in my lap and took off.

I had been starter-ed. My response? It was this: “No-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o!”

But my kids were exited about it, so we brought it home with us. The first round wasn’t so bad – my kids took our starter to a friend’s house and they made it there. But then my friend had some 9 new starter bags. This stuff multiplies faster than dust bunnies under my bed. That’s some kind of fast.

For the second round, I was determined to feel no guilt about it. I measured out the extra starters…straight into the trash can. I kept one for myself and didn’t inflict it on anyone else.

But that seems rather wasteful, you know?

Today I got a brainstorm (and yes, I’m sure I’m the last person on the planet to hatch this genius idea, but indulge me a minute here, okay?): I measured out one starter for me. I the poured the other three cups’ worth into a mixing bowl. The portion that remains in the original bowl is what you are supposed to use to make your bread with that day. I discovered that bit of batter is exactly 1.5 cups…bingo! I had enough batter to make 3 batches of bread.

So we now have 6 loaves of Amish Friendship Bread cooling on the counter. And I have a feeling that if I share some of this with a friend, there will be no almost about it.

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12 thoughts on “Almost Friendship Bread

  1. RT says:

    I’m good for a bag of bread starter every 7 years or so. Other than that, I’d rather not express friendship with yeasty, hungry dough.

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  2. Anne says:

    Someone gave my daughter that starter last year. She didn’t let the air out of the bag like she was supposed to, and it exploded in our pantry. I didn’t know until I was getting ready to leave for church one Sunday, all dressed up. I walked near the pantry and wondered why I smelled beer. Then I found the yeasty mess — everywhere! My kids had already left for church, so there I was, in my Sunday best, on my hands and knees cleaning up this “friendship” bread.
    But you know what? I found out at church that the exact same thing happened that morning to the friend who gave it to her! 🙂

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  3. Megan says:

    Anne – that is hilarious, and I mean that in the most sympathetic way.
    I saw the bag puff up to capacity and wondered if it would explode if I didn’t relieve the pressure a bit.
    Now I know. I will never leave it alone. 🙂

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  4. Laura says:

    ha, ha…. I live in a place where no one bakes. I’ve wanted to start a starter for myself… and give away the bread. I think maybe I’ll do just that next time I’m in Doctor Arroyo. I have one or two friends who are abnormal and they do back – mostly cakes- but might enjoy the starter AND the idea to bake up the extra and not feel compelled to share it.

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  5. Mom says:

    You know how your dad and I love that bread. that is a great idea, to just bake all of it and give out loaves instead of a starter kit. Can you share the recipe for the starter? I’m all for trying to do this. I’m like you. I don’t like the idea of keeping a bag of dough alive forever.

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  6. Aubrey says:

    I can definitely identify. I love the friendship bread, but then what to do with all the starter…. Anyway… have you ever made chocolate? Just use chocolate pudding in place of the vanilla. It’s yum.

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  7. Cath says:

    This made me laugh! I’ve never heard of Amish Friendship Bread, but it reminds me of those awful chain letter (or chain underwear, or chain children’s books) things you get where you have to think of 4 other people to send them on to, in the hope of getting a million back for yourself. They never work, and I ALWAYS break the chain. Hate them.
    May your friendship breads always be few and very far between 🙂 The good Lord knows you have enough on your proverbial plate!

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  8. Sandy Groves says:

    I’ve done exactly the same, leave the one cup to grow on top of my frig while baking w/ all the cups I’m supposed to send out … if too much, the drain on my kitchen sink appears to like it too!

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