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« Citrus Citrus Everywhere! | Main | Bees: Pollinators, Hard Workers and Disappearing. »

13 March 2007


Hmmmm, to date with yeast: breads, beers, and most recently ginger ale. Sourdough, in all forms is my favorite though, I'm working on using it for everything on the knowledge that the "pure" stuff in the packets hasn't been around long compared to how long our species has been eating bread, and that until very recently (150 years is nothing for a geologist) EVERYTHING was made with a starter of some kind.......I just love the basics, and am indeed a fellow Luddite.

Fantastic meeting you Shuna, thanks for all that meringue filled fun. I'll get to blabbing more about it in the future. And the marshmallow from class, managed to not get anywhere but into the kid's mouth, as did the rest (many, many monkey thank you's).

Mmm, I make bread about once a week - usually just a plain loaf for toast in the morning, sometimes that "no-knead" loaf from the Times last fall. I LOVE LOVE LOVE the raised waffles from Ms. Cunningham - a splendid and different way to make waffles, though you do have to plan in advance.

Hey I forgot to ask: are the rings on yer griddle for english muffins, crumpets, something else?

Oh lord...flashbacks...
Last summer I got really into wild yeast, and kept varying mother starters going for months. Rye, whole wheat, white, some started with grape skins, others with pineapple juice, another with nothing but flour and water. But then...yeast ruled my life! They all had feeding/refreshing schedules, and I constantly juggled time, containers, and actually using them until I couldn't take it anymore and chucked them all...sad.


I'm not tellin'
'ts a secret....

But good for you for trying all sorts of things with yeast!

I can see it now: homemade gingerale at the next food bloggers picnic... heh. (plkanning ahead for you-- isn't that nice of me?!)

Aaron-- yous crazy!

Maggie-- thanks for the reminder about Ms. Cunningham's raised waffles! I just love that woman, and all her recipes!

How about bringing the loves of your life together? Brioche....

Yow! Can't wait to find out what you're cooking up with all the yeasty goodness. Haven't used it in a while, but now you've got me reinspired...

Aha! So that's why I haven't been able to bake bread since moving from CA to MA. It's like I suddenly lost the knack of handling yeast. Even moving from southern CA to northern CA once upon a time made a serious dent in my powers of yeast handling, but I was able to overcome those, even using the nasty-ass cheapo electric oven that came with that apartment. Now I don't feel so proud of this success. Now I realize it wasn't me, it was a benediction of the resident yeast fairies who obviously saw my struggles and chose to take pity on a poor befuddled baker, yeast fairies I apparently left behind moving cross-country.

Damn. And the bread here that other people make really isn't all that good, either, except for the stuff from this place:

Nashoba Brook Bakery

And I have wondered this whole time why. Thanks for the elucidation.

(I also love the idea of a secret treehouse kitchen, but "real," not all cutified-out like with the Keebler elves. Could be the foundation of a great children's know, if you have time between experiments... Wasn't there a children's book in the '60s or '70s about a magic oven with a special cookbook? I seem to remember something about cupcakes that turned people into animals or something, but only if they ate the ones with the green candy on top.)

Yeast is great stuff. I've tried a few times to make my own sourdough starter by isolating airborne yeast, but failed. The air in Southern California just isn't as yeast friendly as the air in the Bay Area. In the Bay Area, I had some moderate yeast coaxing success.

My favorite thing to make with yeast is focaccia.

I want to make cinnamon - raisin buns or sticky buns with all that goo and pecans to crunch on. I love fruit buns w/icing dripping all over. Oh the sweet of it! I've tried taming the yeast beast but still to no avail.

I gotta say that the yeast on popcorn and in cheese shakers here in the Bay Area isn't the baking kind. I painfully discovered this at the age of 14 when I tried to make challah using the "yeast" in my mother's hippie kitchen. It was beautiful but weighed about 7 pounds a loaf.

Glad you're having fun with proper yeast though!

I like to make vinegar with yeast.
But, then, I've got a sour tooth.
(I still like *you*.)

I'm beginning to love the little yeasted breads -- doughnuts and pretzles are it so far, but so much fun to play with.

Long ago I used to make occasional loaves of soft wheat bread. I appreciated the soreness in my arms after kneading, kneading, kneading away.

What next? I'm not sure!

Thanks for making me think of yeast and how long it has been since I used it (last fall for a harvest foccacia with grapes and walnuts).... I only knew about raised waffles, no other kind -- they were the ones my mother made....And I can almost smell/taste the air in the house when she made Parkerhouse rolls for Sundays. They will be just right for Easter, no??


Parkerhouse rolls?

Yes please!! We used to make them at Citizen Cake around Thanksgiving time. Wow, I hope to never forget their lusciousness! Like dessert bread with all that fat!

yes, perfect for Easter. Indeed.

What do I like making with yeast? you ask.

Marmite on toast of course!

Yeast exctract spread on yeast-risen bread. However, I am not with you on the sourdough. I am not a sourdough fan. I prefer the regular fresh yeast bread.

Last weekend I bought a block of fresh yeast from Rainbow for 50 cents. I divided it into 50 or so little blocks and froze them all. Enough yeast to make me at least four dozen loaves of bread.

bread, yes. i don't make it as much as i used to, what with work and all, but if i get a wild hair, i will. i give my yeast what i would want if i were a yeast -- wheat beer, butter and honey or turbinado sugar. i usually get fab results. i developed at least four new bread recipes last year with different flavors of beer and other complementary additions. my favorite bread to make is ciabatta but it's so time consuming and it only lasts a day. it's still worth it. i've got to make a loaf of Pan Cubano for my dad. he won't believe it.


It's a really great piece of information to know that live yeast can be purchased at Rainbow. Usually one would have to have a relationship with a local bakery to get hold of it!

And Marmite... my friend's oldest son (about 3 now) calls Marmite "salty jam."

Raspil-- might you be posting the recipe for Pan Cubano? Hungry Readers Want To Know... :}

you can also buy it at Boulettes but it is already frozen and more expensive.
the rainbow yeast rocks.

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