Using Yeast in baking

Just a quick note or two on using yeast in baking.

First, it is cheaper to buy it in bulk and it freezes beautifully.

Second, It does not like to be too hot. If the liquid you add is much over 110 degrees, they will die a deadly death. Their little screams are beyond human hearing, but hot water kills them. If you need to, toss a small ice cube in your liquid before adding it to your yeast.

I generally add the yeast to the flour and sugars, whisking them all together with the salt and any other seasonings. Then I stir in all the liquids together, whisk a bit and let the standing mixer do the rest.

Generally you let dough raise once, press it down, shape it and let it raise again just before baking. The pressing down redistributes the yeasties, giving them new feeding ground while letting you shape the dough into a loaf or rolls or whatnot.

If worse comes to worse and you let the dough rise too much the second time, maybe you fell asleep or stayed blogging too long, you can redistribute them again by punching down and reshaping your dough, putting it back in the pan and covering it. After the 3rd time though there is a chance they can run out of food.I have never tried more than 3 raises.

When you first put the shaped loaf  in the oven, the sudden heat creates a frenzy of activity,  called a bloom. And that’s what your bread does, it blooms up, then the crust hardens as it gets hotter and hotter. The yeast gives its life for your bread. They are your buddies, laying asleep in their little jars and packets, waiting for their prince to come and wake them up. (so to speak). I buy the 1 lb. bags at Costco, freeze half and put the other half in a glass jar with a sealed lid to keep in the fridge. Its half the price of those little bread machine yeast jars, and the same type of stuff.

Do not fear the yeast..


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