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How to Make Yeast for Bread

I had been trying to figure this out, and being spurred on by reading a great book about self-sufficiency "Living the Good Life: How one family changed their world from their own backyard", I searched for and found this recipe.

And since I just made bread 2 days ago, first thing tomorrow, I'm starting a batch of this yeast!

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Step 1: This step pulls the wild yeast from the air in your kitchen. The more you bake with yeast, the more you'll have in your air, so be sure to capture yeast shortly after you bake bread.

Combine in a medium-sized bowl: 2 cups of warm water, 1 tablespoon white table sugar, 2 cups of flour. Cover bowl with a cheesecloth, and place in a warm area in the kitchen. Stir every day at least once. When it bubbles, it means you have captured yeast from the air. From then on, just allow it to sit for 3-4 days to continue to bubble.

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Step 2: This step makes the yeast into something you can use.

After the 3-4 days of bubbling, prepare a cookie sheet or dehydrator tray with plastic wrap or waxed paper. Thinly spread the liquid mixture on the prepared tray. When dry, break the dried yeast into small chunks. Grint into a powder (food processor or mortar/pestle). Use what you need. For longer, place in an air-tight container and store for short term in refrigerator. For long term storage, freeze in the container.

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Step 3: This step shows how to use the yeast you made. This yeast isn't as concentrated as the yeast you can purchase (since it's mostly flour), so plan to use 1 cup of homemade yeast for 1 ounce of store-bought yeast.

Take 1 cup of liquid that your recipe calls for, and dissolve 1 cup of homemade yeast in it. Make the dough, making sure to reduce the flour you need by 1 cup (because your yeast is mostly flour!). Knead and rise dough as usual, which may take longer to do. Bake as usual.


Anonymous said...

Methinks you made sourdough. The yeast is in the flour.

Lamb said...

Have you ever tried using potato water to make yeast? Get a potato from your garden or buy a potato from your local ORGANIC grocer (pesticide/herbicide treated ones will not work as well and may hurt you). DO NOT WASH POTATO! If it has dirt on it, wipe it as clean as you can with a dry dishtowel. Cut potato in half, put it in a large mug or bowl and pour 2 cups of warm (not hot!) water over it.
Let set up to two'll see bubbles or a kind of froth on the top of the water. Fish that potato out and add it to the compost heap. Add 1/4 cup of flour and one teaspoon of sugar or honey to the potato water and stir gently.Let set overnight -- there's your starter for many good loaves of bread! Use one cup of starter for two loaves of bread. Add 1 cup of warm water, 1/2 cup flour and a teaspoon of sugar/honey to replenish your starter each time you use some. I keep mine in a small stoneware crock in a cool dark corner of my pantry.

ThrtnWmsFam said...

Anon: sourdough would be keeping the dough wet, fed and active but this makes yeast by drying the product, and putting it away until needed.

Lamb: have heard this technique but never used it. Is there a way to "dry" it? Thanks... I'm sure our readers will enjoy trying your recipe.


Jb said...

Wow! Who knew??!! I might even try that next time I run out of my bulk yeast. Even if it didn't work out, it would be fun to try it!

Indian Recipe Book said...

Thanks for sharing such helpful stuff.. I have never heard this procedure ... so it was really a good resource for me to learn..

Malakai Phoenix said...

Yes. You can dehydrate starter from potato water to make active dry yeast as above. It stores the same as yeast you buy. If you're concerned about wild yeast, you can use the starter method to keep your yeast reproducing. If you bake bread weekly, you can keep a yeast starter going, indefinitely.