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Newbie at this baking thing. Someone? Advice?

 
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amother




OP
 

Post  Tue, May 05 2020, 8:34 am
Hi.

I am new to baking, and I don’t know what went wrong. I used gefen instant dry yeast to make Challot two weeks ago, and it came out mamesh perfect. This past week, I used active dry yeast ( it was stored in the freezer and my aunty told me to do) it came out terrible?’ Anyone know why

Also, I am making crackers, and the recipe calls for 4 packets of active dry yeast, but I only have bulk on hand...anyone know how many tablespoons I need to use instead?
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amother




Amber
 

Post  Tue, May 05 2020, 8:39 am
I admit I'm no expert but I always proof my yeast, even dry yeast-I put the yeast in the bowl, with the sugar, and the water (making sure it's warm but not too hot as too hot or cold will kill yeast).
I leave it to sit in the bowl for a few minutes until it bubbles and ferments slightly. (usually around 5 mins). Only then do I add the other ingredients.
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nanny24/7




 
 
 
 

Post  Tue, May 05 2020, 8:40 am
I am not quite an expert either, but was the yeast used as soon as you took it out of the freezer? I imagine that might be an issue since the yeast needs to be the right temperature when proofing and not cold.
Did you " proof" the yeast before mixing it with the rest of the ingredients?
Did you use the same flour both times?
You can search on Google or YouTube "how to proof yeast" and see what you find.
It is also possible that a yeast batch, dry or fresh can be defective through absolutely no fault of yours at all! But if it were defective usually when proofing the yeast it wouldn't quite bubble or react as it should which would be a tell tale sign...
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Ellie7




 
 
 
 

Post  Tue, May 05 2020, 8:59 am
A packet of yeast is two and a quarter teaspoons.
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PinkFridge




 
 
 
 

Post  Tue, May 05 2020, 9:00 am
Do you still have the yeasts? Use the second one with the troubleshooting recommended. You might also want to get it (not the whole thing, just the few spoonfuls you need) at room temp. (Though disclosure: I don't.)
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ra_mom




 
 
 
 

Post  Tue, May 05 2020, 9:29 am
amother [ OP ] wrote:
Hi.

I am new to baking, and I don’t know what went wrong. I used gefen instant dry yeast to make Challot two weeks ago, and it came out mamesh perfect. This past week, I used active dry yeast ( it was stored in the freezer and my aunty told me to do) it came out terrible?’ Anyone know why

Also, I am making crackers, and the recipe calls for 4 packets of active dry yeast, but I only have bulk on hand...anyone know how many tablespoons I need to use instead?

Use 3 tablespoons dry yeast (each packet is equivalent to 2 1/4 teaspoons) for the cracker recipe.

As a new baker, stick to dry yeast until you learn the ins and outs of baking, and understand the science.
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zaq




 
 
 
 

Post  Tue, May 05 2020, 11:42 am
The most common reason for yeast baking failure is dead yeast. you can kill it by using water that's too hot or by allowing it to come into direct contact with salt.

best way to make sure your yeast is ok is to proof it by mixing with a little sugar and warm water and letting it sit for about 5 minutes. If it doesn't froth, let it sit another 5 minutes.

If you keep your yeast in the freezer, take it out before you want to start baking and let it come to room temperature. If it's icy cold to start, it will take longer to start frothing. You may think your yeast is dead when it's not, or you may think your dough is not rising when it is, but very slowly.
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amother




OP
 

Post  Tue, May 05 2020, 3:48 pm
OP- Thank you everyone!!! Bh the crackers came out great! Let’s see what happens bh Friday when j attempt to make challah again for shabbos. I won’t give up, I’m the type to keep trying until I get it.
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studying_torah




 
 
 
 

Post  Tue, May 05 2020, 6:07 pm
Active dry & instant are not the same as far as I know
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Ora in town




 
 
 
 

Post  Tue, May 05 2020, 6:26 pm
Perhaps you killed your yeast by pouring hot water on it? Yeast are living bacteria, if you heat them over 40°C (around 100F), you kill them...
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FranticFrummie




 
 
 
 

Post  Tue, May 05 2020, 7:14 pm
I've had dry yeast stored in a heavy zip lock bag, in the freezer - go dead on my. It happens.

I've learned that hard way that no matter how often you bake, you can't go wrong with using lots of small sealed packages, instead of one large bulk package. You want to save money, but this is not the place to do that.

If you open a brand new packet, and have the water a tiny bit cooler than you think you should, you'll be fine. The worst thing that can happen is that it will take a bit longer to rise. If the water is just a bit hotter, you'll kill the yeast.

Don't add any salt until the first time you knead the dough. That will make sure that the yeast is well established first.

If you add too much sugar to your recipe, and you want a long rise, the sugar will feed the yeast too fast, and the dough could be "spent" before you are ready to bake it. That means that the last rise will be weak.

I like to mix up a wet, sticky dough, and leave it overnight at room temperature. I don't use a lot of sugar, because I don't like it super sweet. (On really hot days, you can rise it overnight in a plastic bag in the refrigerator. You can even make a double batch, and just pinch off as much dough as you need.) After the long rise, proceed as usual. The texture is really nice, and the flavor is a little more complex.

If your bread is a total flop, you can always make focaccia. Flatten it, brush with olive oil, and add garlic salt, Italian herbs, zatar, or pizza toppings. It makes a great lunch snack. Kids love it.
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amother




OP
 

Post  Tue, May 05 2020, 9:08 pm
OP-
@franticfrummie, thank you so much for all of the very detailed information. It was super informative, I didn’t know any of that. Makes me a feel a little better. The Challot frlm shabbos, I turned into breadcrumbs. Bh I’m going to try again this week. I don’t want to give up on this just yet. Let’s see what happened.

My challah last week, looked pretty, and it was softish...but it was crumby in the middle and has a funky smell to it ( which I’m understanding was the yeast)
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amother




Amber
 

Post  Sat, May 09 2020, 5:29 pm
Hi OP, I would love a recipe for crackers if you have time to post it. I would love something more savoury than my usual cookies and cakes. Thanks
BTW hope your challos turned out well this week.
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devo1982




 
 
 
 

Post  Sat, May 09 2020, 9:37 pm
Either your active dry yeast from this week was dead or it needed to be proofed first - instant yeast and active dry are two different types (as I discovered, quite by accident, when I recently bought instant because that's all Amazon had available). Instant can just go into the recipe as is - active dry needs to be activated first.

What's the difference between active dry and instant yeast
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raich




 
 
 
 

Post  Sat, May 09 2020, 10:43 pm
Instant yeast and active dry yeast are not the same thing. As far as I know, you don't proof instant yeast, it's meant to go into the recipe along with the other ingredients. If a recipe calls for "yeast" I would be cautious and just use active dry yeast (unless it says fresh yeast or instant yeast.) Good luck!
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amother




OP
 

Post  Sun, May 10 2020, 9:43 pm
OP here again:

To the lady who asked me for the cracker recipe,
Here it is below:I gave you a different version of it, this one doesn’t require yeast. My chally came out MUCH better than last week, it was fluffy, soft, good consistency, however it tasted a drop yeasty afterwards, but not bad where I had to turn it into breadcrumbs. I think I may have let the dough rise too much. I’m going to try again, I have a recipe that’s 4 cups, so it’s perfect for me as a newbie to try.


Sweet Kaak, adapted from Aromas of Aleppo:

Ingredients:

1 cup sugar
2 sticks Earth Balance shortening
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
zest of one orange, finely grated
3 teaspoons baking powder
5 cups flour
4 large eggs
Extra sugar, for rolling (about 1/2 cup)
Directions:

1. In the bowl of your stand mixer, mix together all the ingredients (except extra sugar). Scrape the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula to make sure everything is well-incorporated. If dough is not wet enough, add up to two more eggs.

2. Refrigerate dough for one hour.

3. Roll dough into strands 4 inches long and about 1/2 inch thick,.

4. Twist two together into a “figure S” or “twisted rod” and pinch the ends.

5. Roll each cookie in sugar and place on greased cookie sheet.

6. Bake in 350 degree oven for 8-10 minutes. They won’t really brown much, don’t worry about it.
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