We’ve been exploring some plain communities in Missouri the past week or so, beginning last week with the Rich Hill and Richards Mennonite settlement, then the Jamesport Amish the past few days…now let’s shift eastward in the Show-Me-State to Clark. The Columbia Missourian newspaper has a neat feature today about the Clark Amish community. The town of Clark is located about 25 miles north of Columbia. First, what makes the Columbia Missourian paper so special? Click over to my personal blog here to find out why. The Missourian is a college paper so the article was written by a college student who, I imagine, was probably experiencing Amish culture for the first time. The article captures some of her wonder and has some great food photos. Look at this beautiful sourdough bread photo from Marie Bontrager’s bakery in Clark. The photo was also taken by the sophomore student, Jessica Salmond, who also studies photo journalism. a Click here to read her article and see more photos.
The Clark community is one of Missouri’s larger ones. The local tourism bureau publishes a map of some of the Amish businesses in the area, which is a wonderful resource to have if you are visiting from out of town. Click here to see the map.
Oh, now since you’re going to ask, I don’t have the above Amish cook’s sourdough bread recipe., but here is The Amish Cook’s. I don’t know for sure but to get a beautiful bread like the loaves pictured, my guess is that she used an egg wash to achieve that golden, toasty brown, so you might want to apply that before baking the below recipe!
- 3 packages yeast
- 1 c. warm water
- 3/4 c. sugar
- 3 T. instant potatoes
- 1 c. warm water
- 2 T. sugar
- 1/2 c. corn oil
- 1 t. salt
- 1 c. starter (potato fed)
- 1&1/2 c. warm water
- 6 c. bread flour
Sourdough Starter: Combine and refrigerate, covered, for three to five days. Take out and feed with the starter feed.
Starter Feed: Mix well and add to starter. Let stand out of refrigerator all day (five to 12 hours). Mixture will be bubbly. Take out one cup to make bread and return starter to refrigerator. Keep in refrigerator three to five days and feed again. If not making bread after feeding starter, throw away one cup to avoid depleting your starter. Note: Do not put lid on tight on starter.
Sourdough Bread: Combine ingredients and make a stiff batter. Grease another bowl. Put dough in and turn over oily side on top. Cover with foil and let stand overnight. (Do not refrigerate.)
The next morning, punch dough down. Divide into thirds. Knead each part on floured surface eight to 10 times. Grease three loaf pans and turn each loaf over in pan so it has oil on both sides. Let rise in pans four or five hours. (All day is all right.) Cover with waxed paper. Bake at 350° for 30 to 35 minutes. Remove and brush with butter. Cool on rack. Wrap well and store. Refrigerate. Bread may be frozen.