In my initial days of baking I used to be scared of yeast related recipes.
I used to put in a lot of hard work for preparing breads and more than half of the time the results were devastating. And trust me, it can really get frustrating at times!
But those days are long gone, as now I have understood the basic and the most important thing about yeast. And I would really recommend that you also follow this small step before preparing anything with yeast.
This important step is to activate the yeast by fermentation.
To use yeast there is a great need to understand the process which helps the bread dough to rise or proof.
The purpose of any leavener is to produce the gas that makes bread rise. Yeast does this by feeding on the sugars in flour, and expelling carbon dioxide in the process. As the yeast feeds on the sugar, it produces carbon dioxide. With no place to go but up, this gas slowly fills the balloon. A very similar process happens as bread rises. Carbon dioxide from yeast fills thousands of balloon-like bubbles in the dough. Once the bread has baked, this is what gives the loaf its airy texture.
The trick here that helps to achieve positive results is to activate the yeast separately first and then kneading the dough with already activated yeast.
Here is how to activate the yeast…
(Quantity of all the given ingredients will be mentioned in the recipes)
Instant Dry yeast (can use active dry yeast or fresh yeast also)
1. Take lukewarm water as per the quantity of the water mentioned in the recipe you are following.
2. Add sugar and dissolve it in this water.
3. Add the given amount of yeast and dissolve it nicely in water-sugar solution.
4. Let it stand for 5 mins.
5. The solution will develop bubbles on top and will start rising.
6. Use this mixture to knead the dough.
1. The water should not be hot, it should be lukewarm, otherwise it will kill the yeast and the fermentation won’t happen.
2. If the mixture doesn’t bubble up or rise then discard the mixture and make a new one following the same method.
3. Once the dough is kneaded, it has to be kept for proofing. And after it is proofed it has to be punched and then kept proofing again.