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Crusty AF
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Any bakers here, I need some helps...I've been trying some bread baking lately, using a book called Dough by Richard Bertinet. In it he suggests that the dried yeast doesn't need to be dissolved in warm water with sugar before use - just mix it in and go (and use lukewarm water for making the dough).

After working the dough, the ball doesn't seem to be rising during the first resting phase as much as I think it should be. Should I just go to dissolving the yeast in warm water first, as using it dry clearly doesn't seem to be working? I made a fougasse and a focaccia, and they both came out ok. I'm not sure it would work so well for baguette, etc. though.

My other possible issues are:

Kitchen too cold (though I tried the oven "Proof" mode as well, which didn't seem to make a difference)...it's probably 20-21*C in there.
Water too cold (unlikely - I thought this the first time as it sat on the counter and came to the room temp, but I used lukewarm the second time, and got the same result)
Yeast kicked the bucket (brand new packages, and I got some rise, so not likely?)
Not kneading/working the dough enough/too much?
Other?
 

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My first guess would be cool room. 21-21C (68-70F) is definitely on the cool side. How long is your first rise? There's a time/temp relationship, and sometimes just letting it go longer will compensate for cool conditions.

But if the bread came out okay, I wouldn't worry too much.

Is this your first time making yeast breads? There's a kind of feel for how much to knead that's hard to explain without hands-on instruction. Under-kneading will mean less gluten development and therefore less rise.

Proofing the yeast in warm water certainly won't do any harm, so if it makes you feel better do it.
 

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Adorable Furry Hombre
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What kind of yeast are you using, and how much for how many lbs of dough? I presume you aren't on Mount Everest or some extreme altitude where pressure does bizarre things to cooking. There are many different yeast varieties. Sounds like you already ruled out bad/expired yeast, which leaves chemistry.


Some are specific to say breadmaker machines. I don't knead my own dough, I let a breadmaker do the mixing/kneading-then take the dough ball out after the knead cycle and make a baguette out of it....but I'm using breadmaker yeast as the stuff works.
 

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Yet another clickbait title.
 

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I'm not an expert, but for me, dry yeast is shiet.
Warm everything going into the mix up first so it gets a good start. I bake more in the winter and everything is cold....... yes, even in AZ!
 

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Crusty AF
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
My first guess would be cool room. 21-21C (68-70F) is definitely on the cool side. How long is your first rise? There's a time/temp relationship, and sometimes just letting it go longer will compensate for cool conditions.

But if the bread came out okay, I wouldn't worry too much.

Is this your first time making yeast breads? There's a kind of feel for how much to knead that's hard to explain without hands-on instruction. Under-kneading will mean less gluten development and therefore less rise.

Proofing the yeast in warm water certainly won't do any harm, so if it makes you feel better do it.
Yep, first time. I wondered about the feel for kneading. There's a bakery around the corner from me which just opened up, and also offers classes, so I'm thinking in the new year I'll do an evening session to get some direction. I decided to try it as an experiment to see how things go. Both the fougasse and focaccia were quite edible, so I managed a passable job. Just not sure I've got it dialled in. Next round I'll try dissolving the yeast.
 

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Crusty AF
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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
What kind of yeast are you using, and how much for how many lbs of dough? I presume you aren't on Mount Everest or some extreme altitude where pressure does bizarre things to cooking. There are many different yeast varieties. Sounds like you already ruled out bad/expired yeast, which leaves chemistry.


Some are specific to say breadmaker machines. I don't knead my own dough, I let a breadmaker do the mixing/kneading-then take the dough ball out after the knead cycle and make a baguette out of it....but I'm using breadmaker yeast as the stuff works.
It's one packet (1/4 oz) of the fleishman regular dried stuff (not instant or breadmaker) - it comes in a 3-pouch pack in the grocery store here (kind of like the Lik-M-Aid packs you'd get as a kid). 18 oz of flour and 11 oz water. I'm in Toronto, so nothing special that way.

I decided to do everything by hand at first to see if I actually like doing this or if it's a passing interest. I'd consider a stand mixer with a dough hook if I get into it.
 

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In over 1K posts in this place, I think it's the best one I've come up with....

I'm learning :-D
My ambition is to have any post I start in future have a clickbait title. I'm thinking "10 things you didn't know about chain lube" would be good. Or "This weird trick will fix your rear derailleur problems for good".
 

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Non non normal
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It's one packet (1/4 oz) of the fleishman regular dried stuff (not instant or breadmaker) - it comes in a 3-pouch pack in the grocery store here (kind of like the Lik-M-Aid packs you'd get as a kid). 18 oz of flour and 11 oz water. I'm in Toronto, so nothing special that way.

I decided to do everything by hand at first to see if I actually like doing this or if it's a passing interest. I'd consider a stand mixer with a dough hook if I get into it.
As far as kneading goes, many breads should pass the windowpane test for enough kneading. If the dough is rising then the yeast is working. Time and temp should be the only other variables since your yeast amount is fixed. If your flour is real cold when you are mixing in the warm water it is going to drop the temp down of your ball. That is all I have. I am not a master baker but wish I was.
 

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Crusty AF
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Discussion Starter · #12 ·

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I rarely proof yeast anymore but I do use the instant yeast. Instant yeast isn't cheating and isn't inferior to the other stuff. All of the commercial yeasts are pretty equal performance wise as long as you use them as directed. None of them (not even the compressed fresh yeast) are more artisan or authentic than the other. For that, you have to start growing your own yeast starters from wild yeasts. I used to care enough to do that, now I just use commercial yeast most of the time. It works great, it's consistent and it's low maintenance.
 

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Non non normal
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Haven't heard of this....what is it?


Basically, you knead the bread enough so it will stretch thin enough that when you hold it to the kitchen light you can see the light through the dough. If the dough is tough, it will rip before it gets that thin.
 

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Crusty AF
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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Haven't heard of this....what is it?


Basically, you knead the bread enough so it will stretch thin enough that when you hold it to the kitchen light you can see the light through the dough. If the dough is tough, it will rip before it gets that thin.
Thanks...i'll give that a try next time...
 

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I luv bread....homemade is a challenge...seems like it depends on the day. If, only I had advise, I would give anything I own. It would be sweet surrender to get some good bread. OK..ready for the beat-down.....Good thread...My daughter Aubrey (yep) loves makin' bread.
 

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What the what???
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I like bread... but I don't knead it..


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
 

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warm everything. dissolve the yeast with tepid water and dissolved sugar. Salt will kill the yeast with direct contact so I mix the salt with the flour, again (in winter) giving the flour and salt a zap in the microwave before mixing in the water, oil, with the dissolved sugar and yeast. knead it plenty and leave it to rise in a warm place. Cold draughts are a bummer. Make sure your flour is good quality and of course high gluten (strong). check your quantities with a scale and give it plenty of time to rise, more so in the winter. good luck.
 

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The yeast packet is not likely the culprit.

I measure the water temp (105-115F) because I couldn't tell the temp with my finger if my life depended on it.

I toss the yeast in the water and add maybe a 1/2 tsp. of sugar, then let sit for 5-10 minutes to verify it's getting foamy and the yeast is activated.

After mixing the dough, I put it in a WARM, DRAFT-FREE location. Try turning your oven onto WARM for a couple minutes, then shut it off. Place your bowl of dough in the oven to rise. Be sure to cover with Saran Wrap. Also, try placing a 2c. saucepan of boiling water in the oven with the dough. The steam will keep it moist and assist in the rising.
 

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gazing from the shadows
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It's one packet (1/4 oz) of the fleishman regular dried stuff (not instant or breadmaker) ...
Yeah, that needs to "bloom" before use.

Instant/breadmaker yeast does not need to be put in water (+sugar or flour if you like) to activate. But the regular stuff does. I use the instant stuff for this reason. As LWP says, it's fine.
 
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