Fresh yeast is a great pick for the avid baker. It is sold in cubes or blocks and is a light beige/pale grey colour. The cubes should smell fresh and should feel soft and crumbly. It needs to be stored in a cool dry place as it is highly perishable. It will last for about two weeks in the fridge and about 3 months frozen. If you see any mould on the surface the yeast should be discarded! It is not usually sold in supermarkets but you may be able to buy it in local bakeries or even online!
Fresh yeast is used for baking, you can use it in pizza dough, sourdough bread and even in doughnut recipes!
How to use fresh yeast
Using fresh yeast can be a little daunting for the first time but thankfully we are here with the answer. Firstly you must activate it, this is done by…
- Break the blocks into a bowl.
- Add some warm water with some sugar.
- Stir until the yeast is completely dissolved.
- Set aside for 5 to 10 minutes, in this time the mixture should have foamed.
This process releases carbon dioxide, which makes bread rise! You must make sure the yeast doesn’t come into contact with any salt while it is activating, as it would disrupt the activation process.
Converting fresh yeast
When it comes using dried yeast instead of fresh yeast. All you have to do is double the quantity of fresh yeast. For example, if the recipe calls for 12g of dried yeast, you need to use 25g of fresh yeast. Dried yeast is simply fresh yeast that has been dried and pressed into a powder or flakes, this means they can be used in similar ways!
For a recipe that states instant yeast, you will need to modify the recipe slightly but a general rule of thumb is 1g of instant yeast, you need to use 3g of fresh yeast.
Yeast to flour ratio
The standard ratio is 25g (one cube) of yeast to 500g of flour, then it will require at least an hour for rising.