Question about yeast
Posted: 15 September 2011 08:10 PM   [ Ignore ]
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I would like to make Rose’s Broiche recipe and the yeast that I have is the Fleischmann’s Quick Rise Instant Yeast.  Can I use this yeast for her recipe?

I am treading into unfamilar territory and I am a little confused with what type of yeast to use.

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Posted: 15 September 2011 08:23 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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Hi Liza.  I think it would work, but…in my experience I find that I prefer Fermipan (I can buy at Safeway and Co-op here)—Fleishmanns leaves a funny taste, but that’s just my opinion.  I’ve also ordered SAF from King Arthur.

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Posted: 15 September 2011 09:29 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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Thanks Sherrie.  I sent my husband out for some regular dry active yeast.  I thought I would use the yeast that was specified in the recipe so I would know what the broiche should turn out like.  I did find out that the Vanilla Food Company ( in Canada ) does sell SAF online.  If my broiche works out good I will order the SAF on line.

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Posted: 16 September 2011 12:10 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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All yeasts are interchangeable and have the same flavor, or lack thereof. wink  However, they are manufactured a bit differently and you need different quantities of each to achieve the same result.  The processing of instant yeast conveys two advantages 1)  fewer yeast are killed by the process, so you can use less of it than active dry, and 2)  the granules are smaller so you don’t need to hydrate prior to using.  Most books nowadays recommend using instant.  You can just mix it directly with the flour like the rest of the ingredients.

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Posted: 16 September 2011 03:31 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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Charles,
I cannot agree less. I find a substantial difference in flavor between yeasts. I can tell from the flavor of finished baked products which yeast was used. It is kind of funny but I prefer Fleishmann’s because I think Red Star and SAF have off flavors.  tongue rolleye

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Posted: 16 September 2011 07:09 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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Thanks Charles and Gene.  I did end up using the regular dry active yeast and it is in the fridge right now waiting for the 6 hour to 2 day cure.  The brand was Fleishmann’s.

As I mentioned, this is unfamilar territory for me, and I am excited to see if this will work out.  The only breads I have made before are quick breads ( using baking powder ) and biscuits.  This might open up a whole new world of baking for me.  If this works out, I would love to try making my own puff pastry.

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Posted: 16 September 2011 09:27 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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Gene - 16 September 2011 06:31 AM

I find a substantial difference in flavor between yeasts.

This is really the first time I’ve ever heard anyone make that claim.  The type of yeast used is the same in all instances.

EDIT:  In Googling on the subject, I can’t find anyone noting taste differences among the major brands, even in the bread die-hards of TheFreshLoaf.  I bet if you were tested using double-blind scientific protocols, you couldn’t tell the difference either.

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Posted: 16 September 2011 03:49 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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Too funny, Charles.  It seems that it should be the case (no difference) but I always find Fleishmanns well, very yeasty.  I wonder if it is related to the size of the granules and how they dissolve?  Anyway, it seems like it shouldn’t make a difference—but I find it does.  I don’t have other brands to compare.

Liza, I hope you love bread baking—it is my first “love” in baking.  I can also justify baking lots of bread…cakes well, are harder to justify.
In TBB, Rose uses instant yeast and indicates that more active dry yeast is needed (1: 1.25 ratio).  Not sure which Brioche recipe you are using as she has published several. 

Hope this helps.

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Posted: 17 September 2011 05:32 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
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It never occurred to me before that there wasn’t a difference. I remember years ago I noticed that Fleishmann’s had changed slightly. Upon close examination of the package I was chagrined to discover they had moved production to Mexico. Never been the same. We have a local bakery whose breads have a good but unusual flavor. I was watching them bake one day and they were using Red Star. I expressed my surprise to the owner. He believes the building is so colonized by wild yeast that it flavors his product. Perhaps like the Euro wine snobs who can’t spot the California wines I have been deluding myself all these years. How would we design the double blind?

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Posted: 17 September 2011 09:24 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]
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A blind taste would be very interesting, by all means keep us posted.  I think one would need to give a lot of thought to the recipe parameters, particularly whether the dough gets put into the fridge overnight, and how much yeast is used.  I would think something fairly plain, that uses a higher amount of yeast would be a good place to start, and the recipe that comes to mind is Rose’s no-knead pizza dough.  It uses a higher amount of yeast and less rising time than many loaves.

All that said, I think there are pretty big differences in how well different people taste nuances in food.  Case in point: I think some baked goods, like cookies and upsidedown cakes, are as different as night and day when tasted on the day they’re baked and then again a day later, but I’ve noticed that not everyone experiences this.  Some people agree with me, some notice a slight difference, and some see no difference.  I used to think I didn’t like upsidedown cakes, but it turns out I just don’t like them on the first day they’re baked smile

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Posted: 17 September 2011 11:55 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 10 ]
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Gene - 17 September 2011 08:32 AM

How would we design the double blind?

Gene, it is a credit to your intellectual honesty that you’d even consider the issue.  People are often a bit miffed at the implication that they don’t taste what is obvious to them, even when they know about the placebo effect, confirmation bias, and the post hoc reasoning error.  Even scientists get bit by this dog, which is why they follow strict experimental protocols and have their work reviewed by peers for methodological errors.  Personally, I’m always second-guessing myself about what I perceive, or think I perceive.

About a year ago, I noticed that my batch of dinner roll dough didn’t rise as quickly as I expected.  I instantly “knew” that it was due the store brand of instant yeast that I had just started using.  To test my hypothesis, I went and bought a jar of Fleischman’s yeast, and I made two identical batches of a basic bread dough, timing the mixer with a stop watch and placed the doughs into identical bowls, side-by-side.  Sure enough, the different doughs…......rose at exactly the same rate. wink

In my experiment, I controlled as carefully as I could for other variables that could affect the fermentation rate, but it still was sloppy compared to a real scientific experiment.  I probably needed some objective way of measuring the volume change of the dough, rather than my subjective impression, and I probably should have had a thermometer buried in the dough to monitor dough temps.  And a mere sample of two wouldn’t get my results in to the 95% confidence range.  I also knew which dough was which.

If you were going to test a number of brands of yeast in a double-blind and statistically valid way, you’d probably need a couple of dozen loaves of bread, with the yeast measured and placed in numbered envelopes by someone other than you.  It might be more practical to suggest this experiment to Cooks Illustrated.  (However, I don’t think their testing methods are as rigorous as, say, Consumer Reports.)

Even if they were able to identify a taste difference, I’d still suggest it’d be the yeast food added to the dried yeast that would most likely account for the difference, rather than the yeast.  Even with wild yeasts, like in sourdough, my understanding is that it’s the bacteria that account for the sourness, not the yeast.  The only thing the wild yeasts contribute is the ability to thrive in an acidic environment.

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