LAUREN FRAYER, HOST:
Bakers, this is your season. The dough is rising, family's gathering all around, and for once, no one is concerned about carbs. We've got a challenge for you. It's called the Friendship Bread Project, and it's sort of like a chain letter, except for baked goods. Here to tell us a little bit more is Maria Godoy. She's the host of NPR's food blog called The Salt.
MARIA GODOY, BYLINE: Thanks, Lauren.
FRAYER: So Maria, what exactly is friendship bread? Give us a little history lesson here.
GODOY: OK, well, like you said, friendship bread is the chain letter of baking. Basically, you make a simple starter of sugar, water, milk, yeast and flour, and then you set some aside. You bake with the rest, and the starter you set aside - you divvy it up and share it with other people, and they do the same thing. They use the starter as the basis of a new starter, they bake with some, they share the rest, and so on. And it's an old tradition with roots in Europe but also among pioneer women in the U.S. And when I moved to the U.S. from Guatemala when I was a little girl - I moved to Maryland - one of our neighbors greeted my family with friendship bread starter. We baked it together, and over the years, that neighbor became like a second mom to me.
FRAYER: Aw. And so that little project that someone gave you, you're hoping to pay it forward in the form of this Friendship Bread Project on The Salt. It's a project that you've launched to bring together family and friends through the power of baking. How exactly will you do that?
GODOY: You know, we want to show the power of connecting with our communities by the simple act of sharing food.
FRAYER: Breaking bread together.
GODOY: Exactly. That's literally breaking bread together and baking bread together. In this case, we want to share friendship bread starter. So as a starter is passed along from person to person, the great thing is that each person contributes a bit to it, so in the end, that starter becomes a reflection of everyone who's touched it. It's a reminder that we're all in this together, and in these divided times, we could use that reminder.
FRAYER: So bakers, listeners, would-be bakers out there, The Salt has a challenge for you.
GODOY: We want you listeners to start a friendship bread chain in your community and then tell us about who you shared it with and why, especially if it's someone with views that conflict with yours, and share your story in social media. Use the hashtag #NPRFriendshipBread. And we might do a follow-up feature on you.
FRAYER: And I bet there's a handy little link where listeners can learn more about this challenge.
GODOY: Of course. Go to npr.org/thesalt. You'll find recipes and more details about our project.
FRAYER: Maria Godoy is the host of NPR's food blog The Salt. Thanks so much and happy baking.
GODOY: Happy baking.
NPR transcripts are created on a rush deadline by Verb8tm, Inc., an NPR contractor, and produced using a proprietary transcription process developed with NPR. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Accuracy and availability may vary. The authoritative record of NPR’s programming is the audio record.