Friday, May 8, 2009

Amish Friendship Bread - Feeding Techniques

A friend asked me to publish my personal take on AFB feeding techniques, so I thought I'd share them here too.

Standard AFB Feeding Procedure

Day 1: This is the date on the bag. You don't need to do anything this day other than put the bag in a place of moderate room temp. and where you'll notice it tomorrow and succeeding days.
Day 2: Mush the bag.
Day 3: Mush the bag.
Day 4: Mush the bag.
Day 5: Mush the bag.
Day 6: “Feed” it. Add to the bag 1 cup flour, 1 cup sugar, 1 cup milk, then mush the bag.
Day 7: Mush the bag.
Day 8: Mush the bag.
Day 9: Mush the bag.
Day 10: Baking Day.

Pour contents of the bag into a non-metal bowl. Add & mix:
1 ½ c flour
1 ½ c sugar
1 ½ c milk

Measure out 4 separate batters of 1 c each into 4 one-gallon Ziploc bags. Keep a yeast starter for yourself (if you choose) and give the other 3 bags along with copies of this recipe to friends. Write today's date on each bag so your friends will know what to designate as Day 1.

Preheat oven to 325 degrees.

To the remaining yeast mixture in the bowl, add the following:
2 c flour (sifted is optional)
1 lrge box instant vanilla pudding
1 ½ tsp baking powder
½ tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
2 tsp cinnamon
3 eggs
1 c oil
½ c milk
1 c sugar
½ tsp vanilla

Grease or oil 2 large loaf pans. Mix an additional ½ c sugar and 1 ½ tsp cinnamon in its own bowl, and use half of it to dust the greased pan. Pour the batter evenly into 2 pans and sprinkle the remaining cinnamon-sugar mixture over the top. Bake 1 hour.

Allow the loaves to cool (about 10 min) until they loosen easily from the pans.

If you make the bread earlier or later than the days listed, just be sure you “feed” it every so often.

Alternate AFB Feeding Procedure
The feeding cycle for AFB can be lengthened or shortened to suit your schedule. You could have one feeding cycle at 7 days, and the next at 14 days without any ill effects—the starter is very resilient.

Also, if you've run out of friends willing to try AFB, you don't have to waste ingredients by overfeeding; you can reduce the feed so you have double what you need on the last day instead of 5x what you need.

Day 1: This is the date on the bag. You don't need to do anything this day other than put the bag in a place of moderate room temp. and where you'll notice it tomorrow and succeeding days.
Day 2: Mush the bag.
Day 3: Mush the bag.
Day 4: “Feed” it. Add to the bag 1/2 cup flour, 1/2 cup sugar, 1/2 cup milk, then mush the bag.
Day 5: Mush the bag.
Day 6: Mush the bag.
Day 7: Baking Day.

Separate out 1 c of starter and bake with it, THEN add the following to the bag and mix:
1/2 c flour
1/2 c sugar
1/2 c milk

By baking with the starter before feeding it, you'll get a bit stronger sourdough flavor, but the sweetness of the recipe will counterpoint the sourness to make a great flavor.

1 comment:

Jen said...

I have a couple little tips about this bread too if you're interested, nothing to do with feeding, but tips nonetheless.

1. Dispite that it calls for vanilla pudding when you bake it, if you don't have any, you can omit it with very little change to the texture or flavour of the end result. Or use a different kind of pudding all together. I've tasted some good results with butterscotch pudding.

2. When it comes to baking, instead of measuring out the 4 starter bags again, I measured out 1 c for another starter for myself, and the rest, I would take out 1 1/2 c of starter (which is the amount I had left over the first [and only] time I made the 4 starter bags), and follow the recipe for baking it. I do that a total of 3 times (my reason being, I only have 2 loaf pans, otherwise I'd bake more at once) I realize not everyone needs to end up with 6 loaves of this bread, but there is 7ppl in my house, and besides, I've had good luck with freezing it too.