Hi All - can anyone recommend a specific brand of yeast that they have had good luck with? I have been buying Fleischman's or Red Star in the jar and I get just OK results. I made dough on Friday - both Neopolitan and NY Style from Reinhart's American Pie...doesn't look like I got a good rise. It could also be the water temp I suppose.
Any thoughts or suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
The secret to yeast is freshness. I've been using active dry yeast that I bought from a health food store, and, man, is it ever active. The yeast is classified as "all natural," but I'm not quite sure what that means. Additionally, I always pour the yeast into an airtight Lock and Lock container, date it, and keep it in the freezer. If it's fresh to begin with, it should keep about six months or so.
I would second that. I buy Red Star in bulk from Costco. It's vacuum sealed and I put it in a glass jar and freeze it. I leave a teaspoon inside the jar that makes measuring fast. (I also decant my flour and leave a measuring cup inside that jar). Efficiency is everything. :-)
I find that the yeast stops loosing it's uumph after a while, and I toss it and start again. Still, my experience is that your basic yeast really does the trick, and there are other things to keep under control that matter more.
I made a posting a while back where I posed the question to Peter Reinhart, who said that yeast is pretty far down the list on things that impact the quality of your pizza or bread.
Another thing to experiment with is to get a sour dough culture going, and add 3-4 tablespoons of started to a regular pizza or focaccia dough to give it a little zing.
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