Aug 6, 2013

"Making" Yeast.

The other day, I was hit by a strong wave of soft pretzel cravings. Well, I've made them before, so I head downstairs to check out the available ingredients. Well, yeast wasn't one of them. We have some, but definitely not enough to make any one thing. This saddens me. However, I've heard about people "making" yeast (It's a living organism, you can't actually MAKE it) with several different techniques.

The first of which was chopping up an apple and soaking that in lukewarm water for a few days in a warm area. I read the reviews on this particular tutorial and found that if you make yeast with fruit, whatever you make with it will taste like the fruit. Well, I don't want my pretzels to taste like apples, OR raisins or grapes or whatever else...

You can also make yeast with vegetables. Same thing as stated above, do not want vegetabley pretzels.

There is also the use of a sourdough start: When you make sourdough batter, take a small piece of the batter and store it in a warm, dark place. It will expand and expand... Then, when you make bread again, you can take a piece of it off and use that in place of yeast. You're also supposed to cut the start in half and give half to a friend, who will then wait until it expands and do the same thing...

So, I found another tutorial... It wasn't a good one since it didn't have good measurements, but, I just put some lukewarm water and a bit of flour in a glass bottle, with a tiny bit of yeast, and set that on the kitchen windowsill for a couple of days. During the day I will set it out in the sun, because it needs to be warm. I was hoping it would yeast itself faster that way, which is why I also added some yeast... It makes it go faster. You can do this with just water and flour. Once it starts bubbling, (I think), it's ready to use!

To use this yeast water, you replace the water in a recipe with the yeast water. I.e. in a recipe for bread, it will tell you to use perhaps a cup of lukewarm water and to stir the yeast into this. Well, that's what you already have... Yeast water!

What my problem is, is the fact that every how to on making yeast is not very clear on when it's ready. When it has bubbles? Well, mine has bubbles alright. But, big bubbles? Small bubbles? Mine has both now, but I don't know if they'll get bigger. Also, I think I'm also supposed to eventually refrigerate the yeast water... but when? So, I'm going to experiment with this, because yeast is expensive; water, flour and an empty pickle jar are not.

Hopefully I will get some answers to share. I recently learned a term that I can apply to myself: I'm somewhat of a "prepper". Preparing for things. More specifically, preparing for the apocalypse. Which is strange, since I don't really allow myself to seriously believe that zombies are going to pop up out of manholes and come running out of the wilderness. At the same time, I feel that it's inevitable that some angry scientist will decide to fuck humanity over, though. If there are highschool shootings...

So, it'd make sense that I'd want to learn how to make yeast. I'm a prepper. This also explains my dream of owning a small farm, with cows, goats, and chickens, and enough of a garden to feed my family and guests.


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