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Pampered Chef: Amish Friendship Bread DISASTER!!

  1. kcjodih

    kcjodih Legacy Member Gold Member

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    Okay last Saturday I made Janet's starter for the AFB and followed directions accordingly. Wednesday I added the same ingredients again (day 5) and today (day 7) when I went to stir (since I used the large bowl from the retired colander and bowl set with lid) there was TONS of dots of MOLD :eek::eek: all around the interior of the bowl and that's all you could smell!! And we were SO looking forward to baking this up Monday :cry: :cry:

    What on earth could have gone wrong? Anyone? Janet - since this was your recipe can you help? Many years ago I was given a starter and transferred it from the margarine container I had to a bowl with saran wrap over it and just stirred every day except the 'do nothing' days so this time around I didn't bother with a bag, just went with the bowl again and now ...
    EWWW!

    I'm very hesitant to try again and get our hopes up for nuttin'!
     
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2008
    Aug 8, 2008
    #1
  2. erinb

    erinb Member Gold Member

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    I know that when I did the AFB it was all done in ziplock bags and just squish it around and not open it so no air gets to it.
     
    Aug 8, 2008
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  3. kcjodih

    kcjodih Legacy Member Gold Member

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    hmmm, maybe my lid wasn't on tight. I thought it was on the entire time but forgot to stir it yesterday so I haven't touched it since Wed morning...
     
    Aug 8, 2008
    #3
  4. erinb

    erinb Member Gold Member

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    Here's something I found.

    However, bakers of Amish Friendship Bread should be aware of the following:

    It is difficult to prepare a sourdough starter "from scratch." Microorganisms naturally present in the ingredients may not be the ideal ones for producing a good starter or some other necessary condition may not have been met. It takes experience with the art of sourdough to recognize a really good starter. Most bread cookbooks have sections on sourdough.
    Discard starters which smell bad, turn reddish or orange in color, or grow mold. Good starters are bubbly and have a sour smell; the Amish Friendship Bread starter should smell sweet and tangy.

    Neither pasteurized nor raw milk are good choices for preparing a starter "from scratch." Pasteurized milk probably will not produce enough lactic acid to form a good starter because pasteurization kills the lactobacillus organisms in the raw milk that would initiate fermentation. Eventually you just get a foul-smelling spoiled mixture. People are able to keep already-started starters going with additions of pasteurized milk because the organisms are already there from the original starter culture (which may have been started from raw milk, a possible source of pathogenic bacteria).

    Starters originally started with raw milk may be a source of pathogenic bacteria, such as E. coli O157:H7. Never taste a raw starter. Baking to doneness will destroy harmful bacteria that might be present.

    Cultured buttermilk, water, or yogurt with active bacterial cultures are good choices for preparing a starter. For starters that call for water, flour and sugar (and perhaps yeast), the use of whole wheat or rye four may give a better inoculum of lactic acid- forming bacteria than white, all-purpose flour. Val Hillers, Washington State University, recommends discarding the milk-containing Amish Friendship starter altogether and using a starter that calls for water.

    One can refrigerate or freeze starters, and Cornell recommends storing starters in the refrigerator after the fermentation has progressed satisfactorily (follow the recipes for this). Sure, it "slows them down," but one can get them going again by warming them to room temperature a few hours before use in baking.
     
    Aug 8, 2008
    #4
  5. kcjodih

    kcjodih Legacy Member Gold Member

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    Thanks for the info Erin much appreciated. Now I'm more confused though, not that it would take much at this point.

    Great so it's difficult to create a starter from scratch? JUST what I needed to hear, not! I figured with all the posts back in March and April from ladies who'd tried it as per posted instructions and loved it that it would be easy!
    And now I'm confused with all the info about mold, milk, different flour etc.

    I used white all purpose flour, 2% milk, and sugar. I didn't cover tightly now that I think back to days 2 and 3 but did cover it up and snap lid on on day four after my son knocked it and I though Uh oh, accident waiting to happen and I really don't remember what I did after I added the second round of ingredients on day 5, just noticed the mold today on day 7. So I had a combination of lid loose/askew meaning air getting in and gases getting out and lid tight/nothing going in or out...

    This original thread http://www.chefsuccess.com/f7/amish-cinnamon-friendship-bread-starter-35360/ where I got Janet's recipe from has posts stating they left the bag open a bit, left it tight and burped it, never covered their tupperware bowl etc so it 'seemed' to me that either way would work.

    But now I have mold...
     
    Aug 8, 2008
    #5
  6. erinb

    erinb Member Gold Member

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    I completely understand the confusion and frustration. I had a hard time remembering what to do with it when I was making it. I am just as clueless.

    I just found it interesting in the article that they state that it is difficult to get started and the fact that cultured buttermilk, water, or yogurt with active bacterial cultures are good choices for preparing a starter.

    Hopefully Janet will catch this thread sometime soon and be able to help more.
     
    Aug 8, 2008
    #6
  7. kcjodih

    kcjodih Legacy Member Gold Member

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    Thanks for taking the time to reply and trying to help me out Erin. I appreciate it very much! I think I'll hold off starting another batch until I hear from Janet or one of the other resident expert bakers :)
     
    Aug 8, 2008
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  8. erinb

    erinb Member Gold Member

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    Sorry I couldn't be of more help to you. Good luck with the next round!
     
    Aug 8, 2008
    #8
  9. KateD

    KateD Member

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    I think a bowl or other rigid lidded container wouldn't work too well.

    When you make the starter in a Ziplock bag, you have to let the air out every day so it doesn't explode (which it will... I know from experience). The fermenting starter releases gases that expand and could push a lid open, since the air was trapped in to start with. Saran Wrap expands some, so it is more forgiving than a rigid lid... plus, the Ziplock and Saran seal more tightly than most rigid lids.

    I haven't had an Amish starter mold, but I have had a regular sourdough starter mold once. It is so disappointing, because you have been looking forward to that great bread for days!
     
    Aug 8, 2008
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  10. kcjodih

    kcjodih Legacy Member Gold Member

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    Any idea WHY it started to mold? Did it happen the next time as well or did you do something different?

    I sooo want my bread!! Now I'm waiting 17+ days at least for a batch (the last 7 days plus 10 more if I start tomorrow). IF I decide to try again and IF it works it better be darn good bread for waiting that long! Like Kacey mentioned in the other thread I could DRIVE down to one you ladies and just get a starter from you :rolleyes:

    Or does anyone wanna mail me some? ;) :D LOL
     
    Aug 8, 2008
    #10
  11. Stephaniecafe

    Stephaniecafe Member

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    I have made a lot of starters from scratch and never had a problem. My oldest one is 15yrs old. One of the main reasons for the mold would be the use of non-steril mixing spoons. Thus the popularity of the ziploc bag that doesn't require a spoon, just a squish. There was a good thread on sourdough a while back. SourDough Bread? posted by ivbeen4given. last posting in May. A lot of information I don't want to repeat posting, but read it. Good information. Great ideas for Sourdough. Also, the Amish sourdough website http://www.armchair.com has all the best tips on Amish Sourdough. You need to click on "Amish Friendship Bread" about half way down. Hope that helps!
     
  12. kcjodih

    kcjodih Legacy Member Gold Member

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    Okay thanks everyone. I think I'll give it another try tomorrow and use a Ziplock bag. I'll keep it zipped and just burp it. If that doesn't work I give up.:(
     
    Aug 9, 2008
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  13. merego

    merego Senior Member

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    I have never had that problem either and I just did a started batch myself. I go 6 and 10 days, not 5 and 7, but I am not sure if that matters. I have always used a ziploc bag, kept it open a tad and mushed it every day. I'm sorry you had that problem, hopefully next time will go better :)
    Thanks for all the info Erinb, that is good to know :)
     
    Aug 9, 2008
    #13
  14. kcjodih

    kcjodih Legacy Member Gold Member

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    You increase the starter (add more flour,sugar and milk) on days 6 and 10? Is your recipe on here somewhere? Janet's said to add on day 5 and 10. On days 2, 3 and 4 mush in bag, as well as on days 6 and 7 and then just leave alone days 8 or 9.

    I'm sure it's not the recipe since Janet rocks but I usually have NO problem with baking where my cooking leaves something to be desired :eek::rolleyes:;)

    I'll try again here in a few minutes and use a bag and see what happens....
     
    Aug 9, 2008
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  15. merego

    merego Senior Member

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    Yes, On day 6, I add 1 cup flour, 1 cup sugar and 1 cup milk to the bag and stir. On day 10, I add 1 cup flour, 1 cup sugar, 1 cup milk, stir.... then take out 3 cups and divide into 3 ziploc bags to give away and then mix in the other ingrediants to make the bread.
    No, my recipe is not on here, it is the same as Janet;s, just the days are different, not sure why though.
     
    Aug 9, 2008
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  16. kcjodih

    kcjodih Legacy Member Gold Member

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    So on the other days do you mush every day or let sit (since Janet has days 8 and 9 as resting days)?
     
    Aug 9, 2008
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  17. kcjodih

    kcjodih Legacy Member Gold Member

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    Janet oh Janet where ARE you? What did I DO to your starter recipe? :eek:
     
    Aug 9, 2008
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  18. merego

    merego Senior Member

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    I mush it every day.
    Sorry f I am confusing you more.
     
    Aug 9, 2008
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  19. kcjodih

    kcjodih Legacy Member Gold Member

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    Arrg....now I AM confused LOL!! Not that it takes much :D
     
    Aug 9, 2008
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  20. merego

    merego Senior Member

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    Usually I am the one that confuses easily :) ha ha
    I mush everyday and mine has always turned out fine. It just always looks like it needs to be mushed up a tad :)
    Hopefully, we'll hear from Janet soon.
     
    Aug 9, 2008
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  21. ChefBeckyD

    ChefBeckyD Legend Member Gold Member

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    Janet must be really busy - she hasn't been on since Thursday!
     
    Aug 9, 2008
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  22. kcjodih

    kcjodih Legacy Member Gold Member

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    Okay so I bravely made another batch of starter and this time put it in a large Ziploc bag. My question now is do I leave it sealed and just burp it twice a day when I mush it or do I leave it open a little? I remember someone mentioning they had theirs fall over and leave a mess in their lazy susan and someone said their friend's fell over in the pantry and made a big mess so I'm thinking it should be left open a little? But if so, why do you need to burp it when leaving it open does the same thing? ARGGG why is this so darn complicated for my simple brain!

    I spent an hour online last night googling 'moldy amish friendship bread starter' and some said must be in a tight bowl so no air gets in, some said leave loosely covered, some said in open Ziploc, some said in sealed Ziploc so I going to trust my fellow cheffers instead :)
     
    Aug 10, 2008
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  23. janetupnorth

    janetupnorth Legend Member Gold Member

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    Sorry guys - I was out of town for a cousin's wedding! :) She just got married for the first time at age 42 and told me I couldn't miss it!!!!

    The ONLY time I've had an issue with my starter is in the summer on a hot day. I've had to refrigerate them in the summer.

    I'd try it again with the buttermilk suggestion and also make sure you are using a ziploc and no metal spoons.

    I'll reread in a bit and see what other questions you had.
     
    Aug 10, 2008
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  24. merego

    merego Senior Member

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    Keep the ziploc slightly open at all times. My friend did have hers fall and spill all over her pantry. DS got a hold of one of ours and dumped it on his head ( I was a NC) wished I could have seen it and the look on DH's face.
    I keep mine in this basket I have from Southern Living At Home so and it doesn't fall over. Prop it upp or put something against it to hold it up. HTH :)
     
    Aug 10, 2008
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  25. kcjodih

    kcjodih Legacy Member Gold Member

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    WOOHOO thanks ladies!!

    I'm now at the end of day 7 with no mold! I did the ziploc bag slightly open this time so I only closed it to mush it and then reopened slightly (so I guess no real 'burping' of the bag involved) but it's worked perfectly. I have it sitting in a bowl on the counter.

    Now day 8 and 9 are do nothing and I'll finish and bake on Tuesday - Day 10.

    Do all of you line your pan with cinnamon and sugar to get a nice crunch to the outslide like mentioned in a different thread? If so, what ratio of cinnamon to sugar? Does anyone use/add our cinnamon sprinkles? Do you use less/half if you use your cinnamon?

    Oops, never mind. I found at the bottom of one of Janet's posts the cinnamon sugar of one cup sugar and 2 tbsp cinnamon.

    One last thing, is there really NO eggs in this recipe? Here's what I have...

    Day 10 (Baking day): Add 1 c. flour, 1 c. sugar and 1 c. milk

    Take out three 1 c. portions of the mix and put into containers for 3 friends.

    In remaining portion, add 1 c. oil, 1 c. sugar, 1 tsp. baking powder, 1 small box vanilla pudding, 2 tsp. vanilla, 1 c. walnuts (optional), 2 tsp. cinnamon, 1 tsp. baking soda, 1 cup flour.
     
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2008
    Aug 16, 2008
    #25
  26. merego

    merego Senior Member

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    wow, that is different from my recipe. mine has eggs, more milk, flour, less sugar. I would do it as Janet's says, but my recipe is not the same one.
     
    Aug 16, 2008
    #26
  27. kcjodih

    kcjodih Legacy Member Gold Member

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    uh oh, now I'm confused again. Is your recipe on CS somewhere Meredith? I PM'd Janet so hopefully she can confirm the ingredients for me but maybe I can try yours as well with one of the 'extras' I get on day 10. Taste test maybe :D
     
    Aug 16, 2008
    #27
  28. janetupnorth

    janetupnorth Legend Member Gold Member

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    I have 2 different recipes in my box.

    I'll have to find the thread and go look that up...the one I have handy says (after making 4 starters):
    You'll have a little left in a bowl. Add to it 1 cup oil, 1/2 cup milk, 3 eggs, 1tsp. vanilla, and mix well. In the same bowl mix 2 cups flour, 1 cup sugar, 1 1/2 tsp. baking powder, 1/2 tsp. salt, 2 tsp. cinnamon, 1/2 tsp. baking soda, 1 lg. box instant vanilla pudding, and 1 cup chopped walnuts. Mix together.

    Mix enough cinnamon and sugar to coat the bottom of two loaf pans and to sprinkle the top before baking.

    Spray loaf pans, sprinkle in cinnamon and sugar mixture. Pour batter and sprinkle to the top with cinnamon sugar mixture. Bake at 325 degrees for 1 hour.
     
    Aug 16, 2008
    #28
  29. Stephaniecafe

    Stephaniecafe Member

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    I love makeing them as muffins and cinnamon sprinkles on top. The last batch I made, I used pistachio pudding and used the carmel sprinkles and swirled the sprinkles into the dough and it turned out so delicious! They are also good with chocolate chips and using cheesecake pudding. MMM. Just some ideas. Bake those 20-25 minutes.
     
  30. kcjodih

    kcjodih Legacy Member Gold Member

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    Thanks Janet! So have you used this one personally and should this be the one I use, or the other one you posted previously without the egg?
     
    Aug 17, 2008
    #30
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