Fresh yeast in a breadmaker

From Cookipedia

1 kg of fresh yeast bought from our local baker's; £4 for 1 kg - crumbled so we can freeze it and pick out 15 gram portions

Can fresh yeast be used in a breadmaker?

Your breadmaker manual probably says "NO", but I beg to differ.

You cannot use fresh yeast (cake yeast, block yeast, real yeast) in a breadmaker set on automatic and bake it with the timer function, however as long as you prepare the yeast before hand and get it 'started' you can use your breadmaker to make a far better loaf than your breadmaker would normally make.

Storing fresh yeast

Fresh yeast has a short shelf-life as it is a 'live' product. This should not be a problem though.

  • Fresh yeast lasts for about 3 weeks in the refrigerator.
  • Fresh yeast lasts for 3 months in the freezer.

If you crumble the yeast before freezing it and keep it in an airtight Lock & Lock box, you can pick out 15 gram portions as and when you need them.

Our personal breadmaking

We moved to the country (Norfolk UK), three years ago and have baked a fresh loaf of bread every two or three days using our Panasonic Breadmaker. We have had a few failures over the years but they have all been attributed to problems with the yeast.

We have made lots of improvements to our 'standard bread making recipe', the most effective ones thus far have been very simple and are easy for you to replicate:

  1. Use the longest cycle that you breadmaker has available - on the Panasonic SD-ZB2502 this is Menu number 8 - The French bake; a 6 hour cycle. The result is an amazingly light bread with a baguette-like crumb.
  2. Always mix all of the sugar, yeast and water in a separate bowl and leave it for about 1 hour in a warm place before adding to the breadmaker and making remained of the loaf automatically.
  3. Use honey instead of sugar - the biggest improvement to date
  4. Use fresh yeast instead of dried active yeast

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