Tag Archives: Quick Breads

Amish Friendship Bread

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I love my friends.  I don’t know where I would be without them.  I’m not talking about those acquaintances that you see every now and again, although I like them a lot, too.  I’m talking about those few girls or guys who you can tell anything to and you know they will have your back.

Those people who you can go months without talking to, but pick right up like you didn’t skip a beat.

Those people who have seen you at your worst, but still stand by your side.

Those people who would do anything fo you, and you wouldn’t hesitate to do the same. 

That is friendship.DSC_0263 (681x1024)

And those friends deserve this bread.

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My coworker brought these bags of Amish Friendship Bread starter to work and handed them out.  She gave one to me specifically because I’m “the baker.”  DSC_0239 (1024x681)

Yesterday was baking day.  I’m going to make a few more friends by sharing this bread with them. DSC_0242 (1024x681)

The idea of the starter kind of freaks me out.  I mean, you leave milk, flour and sugar sitting on your counter for 10 days?  Sounds…uh, not delicious.

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But trust me, when you bake up the bread, it has a slightly sourdough taste to it, and the sweet cinnamon sugar flavor is really great.  The outside is crunchy, and the inside soft and sweet.  I think I have a friend like that. 😉

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 If you don’t have a friend who already has the starter, you can find instructions on how to make it here.  But if you were lucky enough to have a friend give it to you, like I was, you just have to “feed” your starter and let it sit around for a few days.   And on the 10th day, you will be able to bake two delicious loaves of Amish Friendship Bread.

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Amish Friendship Bread

adapted from this recipe <-also a handy printable to pass along with your starters!

makes 2 loaves

*Do not use any metal bowls or utensils while mixing.

You will need 1 portion of Amish Friendship Bread Starter.  Either get this from a friend, or make your own with the recipe linked to above.  Follow these instructions:

Day 1: Squish and mush the bag.

Day 2: Squish and mush the bag

Day 3: Squish and mush the bag

Day 4: Squish and mush the bag

Day 5: Squish and mush the bag

Day 6: Add 1 cup flour, 1 cup sugar and 1 cup milk to the bag.  Squish and mush the bag.

Day 7: Squish and mush the bag

Day 8: Squish and mush the bag

Day 9: Squish and mush the bag

Day 10: Baking day!  Pour your starter into a large bowl. Add 1 1/2 cups flour, 1 1/2 cups sugar and 1 1/2 cups milk to the starter and mix until well combined. 

Scoop out four 1 cup portions of this mixture into new plastic ziplock bags. These are the new starters you will pass on to your friends (or keep)

Add the following ingredients to your bowl:

  • 3 eggs
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 large box vanilla instant pudding (Do Amish people really use this?  Anyhow…)

Directions

  1. Mix this very well until all ingredients are incorporated.
  2. Butter 2 loaf pans.  (I used metal pans for this because I only have metal loaf pans.  My bread turned out fine.)
  3. Mix together an additional 1/3 cup sugar and 2 tsp cinnamon.  Sprinkle about 1/2 of this mixture in the loaf pans and shake around to coat.
  4. Divide your batter between the two loaf pans and sprinkle the tops with the remaining cinnamon sugar.
  5. Bake for 1 hour at 325 degrees, or until a toothpick comes out clean when inserted in the middle. 
  6. Let bread cool completely before cutting.

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I passed on all my starters, because I didn’t want to make any more bread, but keep one if you would like to continue baking this treat!  Also,  you can check out this site which gives a bunch of tips on how to reduce the amount of starter you end up with and prolong the life of your starters. 

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Filed under Baking, Dessert

Irish Soda Bread

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This has been a really difficult week for me.  My mother passed away.  I lost a mentor, an inspiration, a friend and the most loving person I have ever known.  She suffered from lung cancer and her struggle came to end last Friday.  It has been really hard to deal with, so I have taken a break from this project of mine.  I never got to tell her that I started this site, and that is something I wish I would have shared.  I know she would be proud that I am sharing a passion of mine.  She is looking down on me from heaven, and I hope that I make her proud in everything that I do. 

Share the important stuff, and always let the people you love know.  You never know if you’ll get another chance.  I love you, Mom. 

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 Since St. Patrick’s Day is right around the corner, I wanted to share this recipe for Irish Soda Bread.  According to this site, this actually isn’t Irish Soda Bread at all.   They say that if it has sugar and raisins and is sweet, it is a “cake.” 

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 Even if it doesn’t technically fit the definition, it is still delicious! 

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 Chemically leavened breads are fast and easy to make.  They are chewy and much denser than those leavend using yeast.  The addition of raisins to this loaf lend just the right amount of sweetness without turning it in a dessert.

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 Irish Soda Bread

Slightly adapted from this recipe

Ingredients

  • 1 cup raisins
  • 1 1/2 cups boiling water
  • 4 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tbsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 4 tbsp butter
  • 1 1/4 cup lowfat buttermilk
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tbsp butter, melted
  • 2 tbsp buttermilk

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Add raisins to a small bowl.  Cover with boiling water and set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder and salt.
  4. Mix in 4 tablespoons of butter until small crumbs form.
  5. Add buttermilk and egg and mix until a soft, sticky dough forms.
  6. Drain raisins and add them to the dough.  Mix until raisins are distributed throughout the dough.
  7. Transfer dough to a lightly floured surface.  Knead for 1-2 minutes.
  8. Form dough into a round ball.  Place dough onto a buttered baking sheet.  Let dough rest for 15-20 minutes. 
  9. Score the top of dough with a large “x” shape.  Do not score too deeply.
  10. Cominbe melted butter with remaining buttermilk.  Brush the top of dough with this mixture.
  11. Bake for 45-50 minutes.

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Filed under Baking, Holidays

Banana Nut Bread

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Who doesn’t like banana nut bread?  If you said “Me!,” then you might want to skip today’s post, because, today, its all about the bananas!

I’m sharing an old recipe that my mom and I used to make together when I was growing up.  When your bananas are black and shrivled like this…

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make this Banana Nut Bread!

I’ve tried other banana nut bread recipes, but nothing beats the one I had growing up.  When I called my mom to get her recipe, and she told me I probably had it already.  A few months ago at a family gathering, my aunts were all passing around a stack of recipe cards from my grandmother.  I took the cards home to go through and see if there were any I wanted, and lo and behold, the banana nut bread recipe was in them!

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You begin by creaming together sugar and vegetable shortening.

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I know some people might be wary of using shortening, so I’m sure you could use butter instead.  I was trying to stay as true to the recipe I remember, so I used shortening.

Add in a couple of eggs and some vanilla.  Then add your salt and flour and mix until a soft dough/batter forms.

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Dissolve some baking soda in warm water ad mix it in to the dough.  You want to mash your bananas up before adding them to the mix.

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Chop your walnuts

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Pour your batter into a greased loaf pan and back at 325* for 1 hour.

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You wind up with a lovely, moist loaf of Banana Nut Bread.  Spread with a little butter and you have a seriously delicious treat.  You can also try it with cream cheese spread on top.  I know it sounds a little strange, but trust me, it’s delicious!

Banana Nut Bread

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup vegetable shortening (or butter)
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 3-4 bananas
  • 1/2 cup walnuts
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 3 Tbsp warm water
  • 1 3/4 cup flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  1. Cream shortening (or butter) and sugar with an electric mixer.
  2. Add eggs and vanilla and mix until combined.
  3. Add salt and flour.  Mix until a soft dough forms.
  4. Dissolve the baking soda in the water and add to dough.  Mix until comibined.
  5. Mash bananas until relatively smooth.  Chop walnuts.  Add bananas and walnuts to the batter.
  6. Pour into a greased loaf pan and bake in a pre-heated 325* oven for one hour.
  7. Let cool completely before removing from pan and slicing.

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