Author Topic: Bakers Yeast  (Read 3647 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline bakerboy

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 106
  • I Love Pizza!
Bakers Yeast
« on: April 22, 2005, 03:10:09 PM »
Wow.  Bakers or commercial yeast has been getting alot of bad press on this forum.  Alot of biased opinion stated as fact.   Trying to make bread or pizza dough taste better by changing the strain of yeast is misguided.  Some of the newer bakers on this forum may be led to believe that they can't make an outstanding dough with the fleischmans, red star, or saf yeasts that they can buy in the supermarket.  This is just not true.  Yeasts, be they "wild", or "natural", or commercial, ferment and respire vitually indentically.  Its how you control this fermentation and respiration that determines the quality of dough your making.  In short, its your technique not the strain.  I happen to LIKE bakers yeast because its strong, predictable, and controlable.  ( I see varasano and pizzanapoletano picking up some very large stones and moving my way!!)  But wait, before you dash me to death let me say this.  I'm not anti natural yeast.  i have in fact used organic grapes to culture a strain and used it to rise a great loaf.  I love that...but i think wild yeasts can be "over romanticized".


Offline varasano

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 712
  • Location: Atlanta (Bronx born and raised)
  • Seeking perfection
Re: Bakers Yeast
« Reply #1 on: April 22, 2005, 05:47:00 PM »
LOL, look out for that anvil Wiley...

To me baker's yeast is just one of a 1000 strains of yeast. It's primary claim to fame is that it can survive in the little package, you don't have to babysit it by feeding it and it's fairly predictable.  Kind of like wonder bread.  Saying that it has the same action as natural yeast is, to me, kind of misses the point.  Take Cilantro and Parsley. These have the "same action". I can barely tell them apart and whenever I send my assistant to the store she always comes back with the wrong one.  But I hate Cilantro and I love Parsley.  If you only cook with one herb you are limiting yourself to a range of experience.  You might get good results but those. Maybe there are a few cooks who could make me a Cilantro dish I would like. But this hardly substitutes for Rosemary and Sage and Thyme, etc. The difference in chemical profiles between cilantro and parsley are probably less than 1/10 of 1%. Yet that difference makes ALL the difference.

On the flip side it's unfair to lump all the "not cilantro" into the same cagetory.  There may be plenty of herbs in the "not cilantro" camp that are terrible.  I don't say "gee you are using a natural levain, it must be wonderful." any more that I would say "gee you are using crab grass, that's not cilantro, must be great".  I've urged several cheapskates who didn't want to pony up $16 to Ed Wood for a great yeast sample to get a job, LOL.. He's scoured the globe for known great samples.

Baker's yeast is not that flavorful. And even if you mastered it and got a LOT of flavor you couldn't, for example, coax a San Francisco Sourdough taste out of it. It's just a different organism producing a different set of organic chemicals and all the coaxing isn't going turn it into something it's not. I've even seen some on this site say they could reproduce patsy's by getting Ed Wood's Italian Starter. It might be amazing. But it's not a starting point for Patsy's. All these organisms are totally different. Tweaking hydration percents by 2%, changing the mixing times and rise times is not going to change a rosemary flavor into a mint flavor. In particular, some people are trying to reproduce a particular pizza. To ignore the yeast factor is to make your job REALLY hard.  I see people beating their head against a rock trying to switch flours.  You say that there is nothing special in natural yeast they all have the same action. Well, the range of variance in yeast samples is a WHOLE lot wider than it is in different samples of white flour.  But everyone is trying to find the 'secret recipe', etc.

The real problem is in the language. If we had words to describe each sample with different name, rather than call them all yeast, we probably wouldn't even be having this discussion.

Ciao,   ;D

Jeff


Offline pizzanapoletana

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 958
  • Location: London -UK
  • Pizza Napoletana as it was made in 1730!
    • Forno Napoletano - Pizza Ovens
Re: Bakers Yeast
« Reply #2 on: April 24, 2005, 08:53:07 PM »
Varasano has covered my point.

I can also add that I have copies of indipendent research results that shows the difference in performace and flavour compaund of different mix of wild yeast and bacteria... all tested in a laboratory.


Offline bakerboy

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 106
  • I Love Pizza!
Re: Bakers Yeast
« Reply #3 on: April 25, 2005, 12:09:50 PM »
I like the fact that we can have this reparte about yeasts.  Its important because it helps clarify some points and dispell the myths. 
Varasano.  Actually you CAN coax a San Francisco sour dough taste out of a common starter.  i did it for 4 years at a very prominent artisan bakery in Phila.  The key is the relationship between the candida species of yeast and the lactobacillus bacteria.  Candida does not consume maltose like other yeasts do and this is what the bacteria need so it works out real well.  We were forced to retard the SF dough overnight to slow down the yeast in our starter and give the bacteria a chance to get established.  I would put it up against any authentic SF sourdough.  I think it would do very well, but it WAS a pain to get right and keep right. 
In another post (lehmans, i think) you said "you can age forever with bakers yeast and it won't make a difference.  Its a particular breed of plant.  it has no flavor"   Now i KNOW you don't think bakers yeast is a breed of plant....right? ;)

Cheesy.  your right , we do use different yeast to assist us in making different products because of their different sensitivities (time, temp., pH, etc.)  However, whether your talking about beer,wine, or champagne, these yeasts all do the same thing:  consume a sugar to produce CO2 (respiration) and alcohol (fermentation).
Heres my point.  You can start a starter from grapes, rye flour, potatos, $16.00 internet yeast, or a $1.59 pack of redstar.   The yeast that will predominate will be the yeast that are able to thrive under the conditions that you provide.  This will happen after 3 or 4 refreshments of your starter.  Thats just the way yeasts work.  If they didn't, there would be no such thing as "San Francisco Sourdough" for example.  Alot of times you'll hear people say that their starter was great but NOW its "acting funny" or "not like it was" or "must have gotten contaminated".  This is whats happening, and its all very natural.  If some schlockmeister is trying to talk you into that "special strain" of yeast....well, he's probably tryin ta sell ya sumthin' ^-^

Pizzanapoletana.  I'm glad you said "mix of wild yeast and bacteria" because thats what a natural starter is...a mix.  Thats what your starter is, thats what my starter is.  It is not only "one strain" of yeast that will be present unless you have laboratory like conditions and a sterile environment in which to reinnoculate on a regular basis...and who does.  Every time you add flour, tap water, open the container, touch the starter with hands or utensils, you invite "visitors".  One can't prevent this by simply being careful when managing their starter.

Here's a funny thing that happened at a sourdough course offered at the San Francisco Baking Institute which i attended years ago.  In discussing the starter or liquid levain we would be using:
class:  How old is the starter that we will be using?
teacher:  THIS starter came over on the Mayflower.
class:  ooooooh
teacher:  Would it make any difference to you if i told you i made it 2 days ago?
class:  silence.  dumb looks.
teacher:  well,  it shouldn't.  now lets get to work. 
  The teacher was kind of a ball buster but that still makes me laugh.
 

Offline dankfoot

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 79
  • I'm a llama!
Re: Bakers Yeast
« Reply #4 on: April 25, 2005, 12:27:50 PM »
I have a question?

What is IDY?

The only yeast I can find is:

Fleischmanns
Active dry yeast
Bread Machine yeast
and Rapid rise yeast

Offline duckjob

  • Supporting Member
  • *
  • Posts: 129
  • Age: 32
  • Location: Anaheim
Re: Bakers Yeast
« Reply #5 on: April 25, 2005, 01:20:37 PM »
I have a question?

What is IDY?

The only yeast I can find is:

Fleischmanns
Active dry yeast
Bread Machine yeast
and Rapid rise yeast

IDY is Instant Dry Yeast, commonly called Rapid Rise by some manufacturers

Offline dankfoot

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 79
  • I'm a llama!
Re: Bakers Yeast
« Reply #6 on: April 25, 2005, 02:10:54 PM »
Thanks,


So, I should always use rapid rise? Or does it depend on the recipe?

Offline Pete-zza

  • Lifetime Member
  • Global Moderator
  • *
  • Posts: 22065
  • Location: Texas
  • Always learning
Re: Bakers Yeast
« Reply #7 on: April 25, 2005, 02:37:11 PM »
"Rapid Rise" is the brand name used by Fleishmann's for the instant dry yeast marketed to consumers. I would seek out the Fleishmann's instant dry yeast marketed to professionals. It is not the same product as the Rapid-Rise yeast (or so I was told by the Fleischmann's people), but it is just as good and it is far less expensive on a unit basis. It is sold in one-pound bags for only a few dollars if purchased from one of the big box stores (Costco's, Sam's, etc.), and a few dollars more if bought from King Arthur and others. I would also look into the SAF IDY, such as the SAF Red. King Arthur sells it but there are several other places that sell it also. I would do a Google search, where I am sure you will find several online sources. You might also do a site search on this forum to find potential sources, since our membera are always finding the best places to buy pizza ingredients.

Any recipe calling for a yeast other than IDY can be modified to use IDY. The standard equivalencies are as follows:

One packet of ADY = 1/4 oz. = 2 1/4 t. = 1 (0.6-oz.) fresh compressed yeast cake = 1 1/2 t. IDY

So, for example, if a recipe calls for a certain amount of ADY, by volume (e.g., teaspoons), to get the equivalent amount for the IDY, also by volume, all you have to do is divide the amount of ADY by 1.5 (e.g., 2 1/4 t. IDY converts to 1 1/5 t. IDY). Remember also that when using IDY there is no need to proof it in water. It can be added directly to the flour.

Peter

Offline varasano

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 712
  • Location: Atlanta (Bronx born and raised)
  • Seeking perfection
Re: Bakers Yeast
« Reply #8 on: April 25, 2005, 02:44:23 PM »
I stand by my previous post.

Offline dankfoot

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 79
  • I'm a llama!
Re: Bakers Yeast
« Reply #9 on: April 25, 2005, 04:04:13 PM »
Pete-zza,

Thank you very much for your detailed answer.

Chris


Offline pizzanapoletana

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 958
  • Location: London -UK
  • Pizza Napoletana as it was made in 1730!
    • Forno Napoletano - Pizza Ovens
Re: Bakers Yeast
« Reply #10 on: April 25, 2005, 07:38:23 PM »
Varasano has covered my point.

I can also add that I have copies of indipendent research results that shows the difference in performace and flavour compaund of different mix of wild yeast and bacteria... all tested in a laboratory.



What I meant was different from what you think.

The tests demonstrated that  the mix A (with strain x of yeast and strain y of lactobacillus) behave differently from mix B (with different combinations)

The test have also demonstrated that each culture had dominant strains, and that with carefull handling, even though there was minimal presence of other organisms, the dominant straint kept doing the job.


Offline D.C. Pizza Master

  • Registered User
  • Posts: 67
  • I Love Pizza!
Re: Bakers Yeast
« Reply #11 on: April 25, 2005, 08:50:44 PM »
i use red star...its fine


 

pizzapan