Mommy’s Bread

The BreadA friend gave me a dough that was believed to have come from the Vatican and is said to be the Holy Bread of Padre Pio. Of course, I was skeptic from day one but agreed to “take care” of the dough for 10 days before actually baking it because I was curious on how it tastes and I’ve been wanting to learn how to bake a bread. According to the instructions that came with the dough, “the bread is called Hemin. On the 10th day you must give it to other good people. You cannot refuse the bread once it is given to you, and you can only use a wooden spoon.” At the end of the instructions was a reminder that I am only allowed to make this Hemin bread once in my lifetime. The first two days were easy because I wasn’t supposed to do anything with it, just leave it in a glass bowl in room temperature covered with Glad wrap. On the third and fourth days, I had to mix the dough once with a wooden spoon. Mind you, I even rushed to buy a wooden spoon because I intended to follow everything and do everything right. I knew that baking was all math and everything just had to be exact, which is why I shun baking. I prefer cooking because I can cook with reckless abandon and if the dish fails, there is almost always a way to remedy it.  With baking, you have no choice but to follow the recipe to the last teaspoon of flour, and I hate that. But here I am, trying my very best to make bread out of a dough. On the fifth day, I added a cup of milk, 2 cups of flour, and a cup of sugar to the mixture. Again, I let the dough sit on the sixth to ninth days by just mixing the dough once with a wooden spoon each day. On the 10th day, I had to add flour, sugar, and milk again, and divide the dough into four equal portions. Three of the portions are to be given away to other people. The fourth portion is to be baked and shared by the family. In the middle of my 10 days as dough-sitter, I found out that this “holy bread” was a fake and there was no bread at all that came from The Vatican or from Padre Pio. Of course! How silly of me to believe that The Vatican would circulate such a thing! It was just like a chain letter, but this time the propagators ran out of paper and decided to use dough instead! I also found out that this is called the Friendship Amish Bread because it has Amish starter yeast in it or something like that. I really wish they just called this bread by what it really is instead of fooling people to believe that it is some sort of “holy” bread. I still went on with caring for the dough despite being fooled because, well, I love bread and I wanted to know how the bread would turn out. Two of my friends, who I informed in advance to be the lucky recipients of my dough, already knew it wasn’t a holy bread but they still want their share because, like me, they wanna try it out, not for the sake of good luck but for the sake of good food. My husband gets in a laughing fit everytime he remembers the many people, me included, who have been had by this bread many have claimed to be holy. Others might have prayed over it, or worse, thought it was a cure to all their misery and ailments. On the 10th and last day, I added eggs, milk, sugar, and baking powder to the mixture. I didn’t have a loaf pan so I baked the dough in a round cake pan instead. I sprinkled ground cinnamon on top for added flavor. The bread looked enticing and it tasted more of a cake than a bread, though not the moist type. It actually felt like butter or rhum cake without the butter or the rhum. Had I known it was gonna turn out this way, I would have added vanilla, rhum flavoring, or even instant coffee! This bread is the crumby-type that would taste really good with ice cream on top of it or when eaten with a cup of good coffee. My husband found the bread’s yeasty taste confusing, but Zoe loved it. She wanted more of “mommy’s bread.” Even Bailey, our pet, asked for more. Bailey would follow Zoe around the house, smelling the bread Zoe was holding. Zoe, ever the naughty one, would walk away from Bailey, aware that Bailey would follow her wherever she went. In the end, Zoe was kind enough to give Bailey her bread, although her only intention was to let Bailey smell her bread. My husband took a picture of “Mommy’s Bread” after Zoe and Bailey already got their slice and I’m sharing it with you in case you’re curious.

The Chase

I’m done with baking breads for now. My love for bread is not enough for me to do the baking. I’m not patient enough to do the measuring and mixing and waiting. Perhaps when I get the calling, I will change my mind and learn how to bake. There’s still a few of Mommy’s Bread at home and I’m cherishing the moment that Zoe is asking for more. After the bread has been eaten and all that’s left are crumbs, Zoe has to be content with getting her bread from the good ol’ panaderia or the neighborhood bakeshop, but I do hope that she’ll remember that her mommy baked bread for her once in her lifetime.

Sharing

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December 23, 2006. Blogroll, Family, General.

26 Comments

  1. Rochelle replied:

    I too received the bread and I too have no patience for cooking bread. I have messed up though. I am on day 12 and I just tonight separated the dough. I can’t bake it until tomorrow-no baking powder(I forgot). I even ran out and got a loaf pan. I have a Zoe also. She has helped me stir the dough once.
    I totally procrastinated with this bread but I know my friend that gave it to me won’t even care because it is not her problem anymore. Do you think it is safe to pass on? Is it to late in the game to continue?
    Thank you for sharing your story, Rochelle

  2. Rochelle replied:

    Also I received the dough on Dec 31, New Years Eve!
    After that day I am always pre-occupied with something-4kids, 1-child and 3-teens. Sick kids..on New Years Eve.

  3. Marie replied:

    How does anyone know that this bread is a fake? From what source was this found out? I know there’s a website that states it’s a fake, but how did they come to that conclusion also. It maybe is fake or maybe not. Was this information relayed by the Vatican itself or just by a person wanting to start all the disbelieving? Please answer with you found this all to be untrue? Thank you. Marie

  4. Jo P. replied:

    I too received the dough from my granddaugher, who received it from her chef teacher. It may not be true to form but has made me search on computer for all the meaning of it. I have now found out more things about Padre Pio and all of his miracles. He is a great Saint and I will now pray to him for understanding. It was fun and I will continue to the end and pass it on.
    We can always learn something new.

  5. Christina replied:

    My Mom really wants to make this receipe, but I do not know the receipe for the starter so I could give it to her to pass along.

  6. ANNA replied:

    CHRISTINA, I JUST RECEIVED THE BREAD DOUGH TODAY, IF YOU WANT YOU CAN BE ONE OF MY THREE THAT I SEND IT TO.

  7. Rose replied:

    Hi, I also received this bread last night. I really didn’t want to take it but when my friend called i was on my way out with another friend and I quickly said yes. I don’t feel like burdening other people with the other portions so i don’t know what to do? My husband says just to throw it out. Maybe i should just make it all and keep it all for us.

  8. momoy replied:

    is there anyone you know who didn’t make the bread? has anything untoward happened to him or her? i don’t know… i cook and bake, but the idea of the chain bread doesn’t really appeal to me. i got my portion last week, forgot to stir it yesterday (day 3), have no oven to cook it in on day 10 (only have an oven toaster at home, plus a housemate who can’t stand strange odors). i don’t know if i want to risk getting kicked out of the apartment because of it.

  9. cheryl replied:

    I don’t believe in superstition but I followed the directions and baked the bread. I wouldn’t taste it because I don’t know how many germs got in it from all the previous households they were in. I do think wholeheartidly that it is a wonderful thing to do. It, to me, is women sharing this bread ritual together. It shows that we are very caring people. More and more neighbors should share. See what this bread did! It got us all talking and sharing. May we all be blessed for sharing! Amen. Cheryl

  10. Terri replied:

    I am another receipient of the holy bread of padre PIO. It does bother me that this is a chain of sorts so rather than pass the dough along, I am going to make all 4 loaves and after tasting one to make sure it’s OK, I’ll pass the other 3 along. My note did say that you can only MAKE the Hemin bread once in your lifetime, but it didn’t say you couldn’t eat it as often as you like. That’s kind of my compromise on the whole thing. Also .. my recipe has a handwritten note that when you go to make your portion, you also add 1 1/2 to 2 cups of flour. (I may also take your suggestion and add a bit of vanilla.) Since so many people have said how sweet the bread is, I may cut down on the sugar the 10th day as well. Have a good weekend all.

  11. malou replied:

    we also received the dough

  12. Emalyn replied:

    I also got this “hemin bread” dough from my sister and on the 10th day today where I’m supposed to divide it into 4 portions and bake my portion of it, but then I decided to dig more into it and try the internet and viola!… what an interesting comments have I read from different people and websites that I visited which carry this topic.I wonder then how am I supposed to give them to my friends knowing that it is fake… well, at least the consolation is that most of the ones who baked them said it tastes good and it is really edible. I’d still pass them along I guess but refer to them as friendship bread instead of continue fooling other people that it is a holy bread from vatican. The important thing is that I was able to share… God bless!

  13. Randy replied:

    no one will give me this dough so how do i make it

  14. ML replied:

    I received it from my mom 3 days ago. I don’t mind whether or not it’s origins are legitimately from the Vatican. The whole premise is nice enough. My real concern is the safety in eating something that contains milk and eggs, that is merely sitting on the room temperature counter for days and days. Isn’t this a breeding ground for bacteria? Why would we want to put our health at risk?

  15. charlene replied:

    hello,
    I got my bread 10 days ago. my husband and I love it. wish that I cuold make mone.

  16. Tricia replied:

    Hi Charlene,

    Glad you enjoyed your bread. I never got to do it again but I was glad my daughter loved it. My husband isn’t much of a bread person : )

    Tricia

  17. Christine replied:

    I just finished the process of this Hemin bread and actually baked it this evening. I was a little reluctant due to it sitting out for 10 days. Suprizingly it was very good, my husband loved it.

  18. JUDY replied:

    What happens if you cannot find 3 people to pass on the dough? Does that break the cycle?

  19. cathy replied:

    I RECEIVED THIS DOUGH 7 DAYS AGO AND OF COURSE, I AM DOING IT, AND WORRYING ABOUT WHO TO GIVE MY 3 SHARES TO ON THE 10TH DAY. BETTER YET WHO WILL ACCEPT IT? I DID REMEMBER DOING THIS MANY YEARS AGO AS AMISH BREAD. WHO KNOWS…. WHO STARTED IT. IF IT BRINGS A LITTLE FUN AND FAITH INTO DREARY LIVES THEN SO BE IT. WE CAN ALL USE A LITTLE FAITHFUL SUPERSTITION ONCE IN AWHILE, ALONG WITH SOMETHING GOOD TO EAT. IF NO ONE WILL TAKE THE DOUGH I WILL MAKE BREAD AND DONATE IT TO SOMEONE WHO CAN’T BAKE ANYMORE. I AM SURE SOMEONE WOULD GLADLY EAT IT.

  20. Kathy Whittel replied:

    Does anyone have a recipe for the base of this bread? I received it from my neighbor, and I accidently messed it up! Is there a new way to startit, so therfore I can distribute it? Thank you!

  21. sayong replied:

    I got the dough from a friend yesterday so there’s nothing to do yet until tomorrow. I’m glad to have stumbled upon your site. I know that it’s a fake but I like the idea of sharing the bread and the family praying together 🙂 But my officemates didn’t want to accept the dough next Friday so I’m still thinking to whom I could pass it on 🙂

    sayong
    08-23-07 10:30am

  22. val replied:

    searched catholic websites about it. even the priest at ewtn didn’t know anything about it. but i think it’s a great idea to share. sort of like the multiplication of loaves.

  23. Ivan replied:

    Interesting…

  24. nancee replied:

    i dont know about anyone else, but i also was the recipient of this bread dough, i followed the recipe, gave out 3 parts to friends ,1 of which had a 26 yr old daughter diagnosed with lymphoma cancer, my friend followed the recipe baked her own part and ate whole heartedly so did her daughter, well when she went for her usual testing the tumor was gone. this was 3 yrs ago. to this day thank god she is doing well and just got engaged, so i guess it all comes down to faith.

  25. nancee replied:

    here is the starter recipe for this bread

    INGREDIENTS (Nutrition)
    1 (.25 ounce) package active dry yeast
    1/4 cup warm water (110 degrees F/45 degrees C)
    3 cups all-purpose flour, divided
    3 cups white sugar, divided
    3 cups milk
    Add to Recipe Box
    My folders:

    DIRECTIONS
    In a small bowl, dissolve yeast in water. Let stand 10 minutes. In a 2 quart container glass, plastic or ceramic container, combine 1 cup flour and 1 cup sugar. Mix thoroughly or flour will lump when milk is added. Slowly stir in 1 cup milk and dissolved yeast mixture. Cover loosely and let stand until bubbly. Consider this day 1 of the 10 day cycle. Leave loosely covered at room temperature.
    On days 2 thru 4; stir starter with a spoon. Day 5; stir in 1 cup flour, 1 cup sugar and 1 cup milk. Days 6 thru 9; stir only.
    Day 10; stir in 1 cup flour, 1 cup sugar and 1 cup milk. Remove 1 cup to make your first bread, give 2 cups to friends along with this recipe, and your favorite Amish Bread recipe. Store the remaining 1 cup starter in a container in the refrigerator, or begin the 10 day process over again (beginning with step 2).
    FOOTNOTES
    Editor’s Note
    Once you have made the starter, you will consider it Day One, and thus ignore step 1 in this recipe and proceed with step 2. You can also freeze this starter in 1 cup measures for later use. Frozen starter will take at least 3 hours at room temperature to thaw before using.

  26. Hemin bread | Bestsellersterms replied:

    […] Mommy’s Bread « Tricia’s WorldYou cannot refuse the bread once it is given to you, and you can only use a wooden spoon.” At the end of the instructions was a reminder that I am only allowed to make this Hemin bread once in my lifetime. […]

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