Also known as, A Lesson in ‘No, thanks’.
There is another sweet older lady that lives downstairs. Not the crazy one with lipstick on her teeth, but a sweet one that brings toys for Otis (she used to watch kids) and gave us a loaf of bread at Christmas.
That loaf of bread happend to be Amish Friendship Bread. It was delicious. Well, last week she came upstairs to give us a bag of blocks and a blanket and she asked about the bread.
Me: It was wonderful!
Mark: I didn’t get any…
Me: Ya snooze, ya lose…
Neighbor Lady: Would you like your own starter? You can make some for yourself…
Inside my head: Oh dear. I don’t even know where our oven is…
Me: Um, duh! I love baking! You do bake it… right?
Neighbor Lady: Yes, you’ll have to bake it by Saturday. That’s Day 10. You just add some basic ingredients…
Inside my head and totally not listening to Neighbor Lady: Crapcrapcrap. Ingredients? I don’t have ingredients! I wonder if there are microwave directions…
Me: Yeah, I think we have all of that! Yeah, this will be great!
Neighbor Lady: Great! I’ll go get the starter for you.
Crap. “No, thanks! I don’t know where the oven is” would have been a much better answer, but no. I had to offer myself up to the Amish Friendship Bread altar.
Mark: You’re going to bake?
He don’t know me.
Neighbor Lady: Here’s the starter (hands me a ziplock bag of liquid) and the recipe. And don’t worry, if you lose the starter the recipe for it is on the second page.
Inside my head: Lose the starter? It can run away? Is it not dead yet? Crapcrapcrap.
Me: Thanks! I can’t wait until Saturday! Or should I say Baker Day! Ha!
It was a Wednesday night. I had 2 days until B-day. Until Saturday the only thing I had to do was “Mush the bag”. Easy enough, right?
Mark: Did you mush your bag today?
Mark: Are you sure you want to do this? We can give it to my mom…
Me: I GOT THIS.
Baker Day finally got here and I realized it was do or die. I mushed my bag and started reading the directions. For the first time. I read the directions (past “Mush the bag”) FOR THE FIRST TIME.
Me: Do we have flour?
Mark: I think so.
Mark: Ummm… yeah. We have some…I think.
Me: Whatever it probably isn’t important.
So I got started. Here’s the thing, the only motivation that I had to make this bread was to get it off of my counter. I thought, “I’ll make it, be done and move on with life”.
But that’s not how Amish Friendship Bread works.
The very first thing you do with Amish Friendship Bread is make 4 more starters. FOUR MORE STARTERS, PEOPLE. I went from having one bag of liquid bread to having four. If I read the directions all the way through I might have been able to stop it, but psh. Reading directions is for wusses.
After I scooped out the 4 starters, it was time to make the actual bread.
Me: Oh, crap. This thing needs instant vanilla pudding.
Mark: We have some!
Me: No, we have instant lemon pudding. And we have cook & serve chocolate pudding. Where did we get all of this pudding?
After a lengthy discussion about the difference between instant and cook & serve and whether we’d rather eat lemon Amish Bread or chocolate Amish Bread we decided to go with cook & seve chocolate pudding.
At this point Mark decided to tag team with me. I had most of the ingredients out and ready to go, but I guess I sounded like I was having so much fun that he just needed to get in on the action.
Mark: Cinnamon? Do you think we should put it in there?
Me: Why not?
Mark: Cinnamon and chocolate?
Me: You’re right. Take it out.
Mark: We only have 2 eggs. It wants 3.
Me: Uh oh.
Mark: Eh, they’re large eggs.
Me: Make it work.
By the end of it all we had taken out the cinnamon, replaced instant vanilla pudding with cook & serve chocolate pudding and used 2 (large) eggs instead of 3. Oh, and since we don’t have loaf pans we put them in a large rectangle pan and a circle pan. Needless to say, before we put the bread in the oven we said a prayer. Or two.
And that’s why, as we search for a house, I consider a kitchen completely optional.
Also, the Amish Friendship BrownieBread was actually kind of awesome. In the name of Jesus.