Author Topic: Yeast problem - need advice.  (Read 1181 times)

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Offline Outatime

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Yeast problem - need advice.
« on: February 08, 2011, 01:43:23 PM »
I'm contemplating returning back to IDY from ADY.  Lately, the Red Star ADY I buy (brick from S&F) dies within 4 weeks of purchase.  I've tried freezing, refridgerating and room-temping without success; I do mix with 105-deg. water before use (verified with a digital thermometer) and soak for 10 mins prior to mixing with the flour.  I store inside glass jars with tight lids, and the product is not old or expired when I purchase.  And when I get a funky batch of dough, I always do two more test batches to confirm that yeast was the problem.  (one with new yeast, one with the existing supply, using identical recipies, temps and techniques to verify the problem.)

I suspect that the product I'm purchasing is expired/repackaged/redated.  I've seen this before by certain companies that are trying to save a buck; certain retailers <ahem..> demand an ultra low-cost product to shelve that looks like everyone elses's retail packaging, but the contents are of considerable less quality/quantity in order to turn a profit.  And I suspect S&F might be doing this purposely to shade competitors.

I'm going to source differently now because of this problem.  I'm tempted to go back to IDY from a completely different retailer (anything BUT a discount outfit); it can be mixed directly into dough or water without rehydrating or proofing as I understand it.  However, I also understand that the measurements are different between ADY and IDY.  Should I add more, or less than ADY to achieve the same results?  Is the shelf life of IDY better or worse than ADY?  What is the best way to store IDY for maximum freshness?

And I'm curious if anyone else has experienced yeast problems when sourcing from discount retailers.  Ruining a perfectly good batch of dough with dead yeast shouldn't happen to a DOG.  I'm half-ticked at Red Star/S&F about this, and I want to try a different tack.  Thanks for your help.


Offline sfspanky

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Re: Yeast problem - need advice.
« Reply #1 on: February 08, 2011, 02:23:14 PM »
I'm contemplating returning back to IDY from ADY.  Lately, the Red Star ADY I buy (brick from S&F) dies within 4 weeks of purchase.  I've tried freezing, refridgerating and room-temping without success; I do mix with 105-deg. water before use (verified with a digital thermometer) and soak for 10 mins prior to mixing with the flour.  I store inside glass jars with tight lids, and the product is not old or expired when I purchase.  And when I get a funky batch of dough, I always do two more test batches to confirm that yeast was the problem.  (one with new yeast, one with the existing supply, using identical recipies, temps and techniques to verify the problem.)

I suspect that the product I'm purchasing is expired/repackaged/redated.  I've seen this before by certain companies that are trying to save a buck; certain retailers <ahem..> demand an ultra low-cost product to shelve that looks like everyone elses's retail packaging, but the contents are of considerable less quality/quantity in order to turn a profit.  And I suspect S&F might be doing this purposely to shade competitors.

I'm going to source differently now because of this problem.  I'm tempted to go back to IDY from a completely different retailer (anything BUT a discount outfit); it can be mixed directly into dough or water without rehydrating or proofing as I understand it.  However, I also understand that the measurements are different between ADY and IDY.  Should I add more, or less than ADY to achieve the same results?  Is the shelf life of IDY better or worse than ADY?  What is the best way to store IDY for maximum freshness?

And I'm curious if anyone else has experienced yeast problems when sourcing from discount retailers.  Ruining a perfectly good batch of dough with dead yeast shouldn't happen to a DOG.  I'm half-ticked at Red Star/S&F about this, and I want to try a different tack.  Thanks for your help.


Go back to IDY. I use SAF Red Label and buy it in 1lb packages for about $5. Make sure the package is fully vacuumed as if the package has been broken and oxygen gets in, that will kill the yeast cells. Also, check the production date and use by date on the package.

IDY has more water content than ADY and that is the reason you can just pitch it in your dough without having to rehydrate it. Because it has more water, more of the weight of the yeast is indeed water, so you have to use more IDY in your formula than ADY.

Freezing kills yeast cells so don't freeze it. After opening up a package of IDY, put it in an air tight container leaving as little room for oxygen as possible and keep it in your refrigerator. It is generally good for 6 months in this state.

I buy mine from a distributor that goes through high volume, so my yeast is always close to the production date. I don't know where you live, but here in Oregon we have restaurant supply stores that are open to the public called Cash and Carry. In some states, I believe they are called Smart and Final, etc. Either way, a pound of IDY yeast for $5 is pretty cheap.
Brian Spangler
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Offline Outatime

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Re: Yeast problem - need advice.
« Reply #2 on: February 08, 2011, 02:41:50 PM »
A six-month lifespan sounds nice.  The Smart & Final here does carry SAF, so some experimenting is in order.  A friend suggests using less IDY than ADY, about 1/4-less.

I've tried culturing my own starter a few times without much success.  I just sent an SASE for Carl Griffith's 1847 Oregon Trail Sourdough Starter (http://carlsfriends.net) which is distributed free of charge.  Eventually I'd like to dump commercial yeast altogether in favor of a natural poolish.
« Last Edit: February 08, 2011, 03:09:07 PM by Outatime »

Offline sfspanky

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Re: Yeast problem - need advice.
« Reply #3 on: February 08, 2011, 03:17:31 PM »
A six-month lifespan sounds nice.  The Smart & Final here does carry SAF, so some experimenting is in order.  A friend suggests using less IDY than ADY, about 1/4-less.

I've tried culturing my own starter a few times without much success.  I just sent an SASE for Carl Griffith's 1847 Oregon Trail Sourdough Starter (http://carlsfriends.net) which is distributed free of charge.  Eventually I'd like to dump commercial yeast altogether in favor of a natural poolish.


I'm sorry.... you're right. Use less IDY than ADY. Got my synapses all crossed over on that response.
Brian Spangler
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Online Pete-zza

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Re: Yeast problem - need advice.
« Reply #4 on: February 08, 2011, 03:28:05 PM »
IDY has more water content than ADY and that is the reason you can just pitch it in your dough without having to rehydrate it. Because it has more water, more of the weight of the yeast is indeed water, so you have to use more IDY in your formula than ADY.

Freezing kills yeast cells so don't freeze it. After opening up a package of IDY, put it in an air tight container leaving as little room for oxygen as possible and keep it in your refrigerator. It is generally good for 6 months in this state.

Brian,

IDY can absorb water at a faster rate than ADY but I do not recall reading that they have different water contents in the dry state. I have always understood the main differences to be the shape and geometry of the yeast particles and the fact that ADY has many more dead cells than IDY, thereby requiring rehydration to reach the live cells. There is actually a pretty good article on some of these differences by Tom Lehmann that I copied and pasted into Reply 7 at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,7465.msg64349.html#msg64349.

For ADY to IDY conversions, and vice versa, I have built in the conversion data in the various dough calculating tools on the forum (at http://www.pizzamaking.com/dough_tools.html). However, there is a good table that does similar conversions at http://www.theartisan.net/convert_yeast_two.htm but unfortunately I could not get the link to work today. However, what it does show is that on a weight basis you need more ADY than IDY to get comparable leavening power.

There are some members who have reported getting good storage life out of their dry yeasts in the refrigerator. However, I have pretty much always frozen my dry yeasts, in airtight containers. To compensate for freezing the dry yeasts I use, and also aging of the yeasts, I typically use a tad more yeast than usual. A one-pound bag of say, IDY, can last me several years.

Peter

Offline sfspanky

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Re: Yeast problem - need advice.
« Reply #5 on: February 08, 2011, 03:46:54 PM »
Brian,

IDY can absorb water at a faster rate than ADY but I do not recall reading that they have different water contents in the dry state. I have always understood the main differences to be the shape and geometry of the yeast particles and the fact that ADY has many more dead cells than IDY, thereby requiring rehydration to reach the live cells. There is actually a pretty good article on some of these differences by Tom Lehmann that I copied and pasted into Reply 7 at http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,7465.msg64349.html#msg64349.

For ADY to IDY conversions, and vice versa, I have built in the conversion data in the various dough calculating tools on the forum (at http://www.pizzamaking.com/dough_tools.html). However, there is a good table that does similar conversions at http://www.theartisan.net/convert_yeast_two.htm but unfortunately I could not get the link to work today. However, what it does show is that on a weight basis you need more ADY than IDY to get comparable leavening power.

There are some members who have reported getting good storage life out of their dry yeasts in the refrigerator. However, I have pretty much always frozen my dry yeasts, in airtight containers. To compensate for freezing the dry yeasts I use, and also aging of the yeasts, I typically use a tad more yeast than usual. A one-pound bag of say, IDY, can last me several years.

Peter

I just pulled my notebook that I used when training with Didier and all this is correct. Sorry again, I got my info all scrambled in my head. I have never used ADY, which is probably leading to my confusion.

Didier did note that freezing will kill some of the yeast cells, so he did not recommend using it for preservation.

The brain and memory...if you don't constantly exercise it, you'll lose it.
Brian Spangler
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Re: Yeast problem - need advice.
« Reply #6 on: February 08, 2011, 04:34:04 PM »
Didier did note that freezing will kill some of the yeast cells, so he did not recommend using it for preservation.

Brian,

I know that yeast prducers do not like to encourage anyone to freeze their yeast products, and it is perhaps not a good idea for professionals to do so, but is it possible that Didier was referring to fresh yeast rather than dry yeast?

Peter

Offline sfspanky

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Re: Yeast problem - need advice.
« Reply #7 on: February 08, 2011, 04:47:42 PM »
Brian,

I know that yeast prducers do not like to encourage anyone to freeze their yeast products, and it is perhaps not a good idea for professionals to do so, but is it possible that Didier was referring to fresh yeast rather than dry yeast?

Peter

No, he was talking about all yeast. I think we talked about fresh and ADY for a nano second... he doesn't recommend them.
Brian Spangler
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Offline TXCraig1

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Re: Yeast problem - need advice.
« Reply #8 on: February 08, 2011, 06:13:55 PM »
The brain and memory...if you don't constantly exercise it, you'll lose it.

I tried taking that Ginkgo biloba supplement that's supposed to help your memory, but I kept forgetting to take it...

Craig
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