Mother yeast: how to make natural yeast at home. Differences between sourdough and brewer's yeast. How to use it and how to make refreshments.
Themother yeast, Also known assour yeast, sourdough, sourdough or sourdough, is a simple mixture of flour and water acidified by the proliferation of yeasts and lactic bacteria capable of providing for the natural fermentation of the compound.
Difference between natural yeast and brewer's yeast
Themother yeast, unlike the "brewer's yeast“, Can count on the fermentation induced by various species of lactic bacteria which should ensure greater digestibility, growth and conservation of the product.
Brewer's yeast consists only of yeast coloniesSaccharomyces cerevisiae. On the contrary, thesourdoughpresents different populations of microorganisms and, when prepared from yogurt as in our mother yeast recipe, a culture of Lactobacillus in symbiotic combination with yeasts. The perfect blend for those fermentation processes that lead toleavening of the bread and pizza doughand other baked goods.
Although in daily practice themother yeastit has been almost completely replaced by thebrewer's yeast, many people continue to employ themother yeastfor the preparation of bread and pizzas.
After understandinghow to prepare sourdough, lovers of traditional flavors, can try their hand at preparing the ancient homemade bread, in this regard we point out our article onhow to make bread at home.
The origins of bread making are very ancient. One of the oldest types ofbreadobtained with thenatural leaveningit dates back to 3,700 BC and has all European origins. According to the Encyclopedia of Food Microbiology, thenatural yeastwas born in Europe, probably in Switzerland. In fact, there are even older records.
Among the various references to theleaveningwe point out that of Pliny the Elder who, in his Natural History makes references precisely tonatural yeast refreshments.
Initially, thesourdoughit was used for leavening rye flour, still today, to makebump uprye flour is more convenient to use sourdough because the classicsyeaststhey are unable to leaven with flours with little or no gluten.
How to prepare the mother yeast
There Sourdoughit is prepared by composing a spontaneous acid mixture obtained by mixing water and flour wisely. To speed up the preparation of thenatural yeastwe recommend adding exogenous lactic bacteria and sugars, key elements to allow the spontaneous growth ofyeasts; given the presence of the genusLactobacilluswe recommend adding a source of lactic bacteria such as yogurt to the flour and water mixture.
- Ingredients to prepare the mother yeast
-Lean yogurt 250 ml
- Organic flour type 00, 250 grams
- Ingredients for subsequent refreshments for themother yeast
- Manitoba flour, just enough
-Water at room temperature, just enough
Warning! In our recipe of themother yeastwe advised you to use a jar of yogurt. In reality you can use even half of it or not use it at all, or use other sugary substrates like a teaspoon of honey!
In any case, the fermentation process will take place by keeping the dough, for at least 24 hours, in a closed environment (perhaps in a jar) at temperatures between 27 ° and 32 ° C.
How to prepare the mother yeast
The preparation of themother yeastrequires a good dose of patience: after a first wait, thesourdoughIt will be "kept alive”With continuous refreshments of flour and water, in fact the bacteria contained in thenatural yeastthey need to be fed for life, or rather, until the natural yeast has become strong enough to be used in the kitchen.
Theresourdoughis given bylive yeastswhich should be fed with refreshments on a weekly basis. From personal experience I can say that yeasts can hold up without refreshment (without acidifying too much) even for 10 - 13 days.
With the starting ingredients proposed by us, forprepare the mother yeastwe will have to wait:
- To start fermentation it will be necessary to wait 48 hours at room temperature, 24 hours at 27 ° C.
- To get amother yeaststrong enough you will have to wait for 14 days.
The preparation of themother yeastit must take place in an environment with an average temperature of 22-25 ° C, the “rest” phase must also be spent in a temperate place with average temperature levels between 20 and 25 ° C; the ideal temperature for yeast proliferation is between 27-32 ° C but even slightly lower temperatures will do.
1) Place the flour in a bowl and add the jars of low-fat yogurt, mix well using only one hand and continue until the mixture is homogeneous and non-sticky.
2) Bring the dough on a work table to obtain the classic "smooth ball" to be placed in a very large glass bowl. With a knife, carve a cross on the dough. Cover the bowl with cling film but secure a source of oxygen by piercing the same film with a toothpick. Let the dough rest for 48 hours.
3) After 48 hours, your dough will take on a soft and moist consistency, with a whitish color and a slightly acidic odor. If the compound contains traces of mold along the surface, it means that it is not good and the entire operation will have to be repeated.
Some portals recommend preparing themother yeastnear very ripe fruit ... we do not recommend this practice to "control" as far as possible the bacterial strains that will take care of our fermentation so as to avoid any type of "contamination".
4) If your yeast is good, refresh it! Take 200 grams of your mixture taking care to remove the most superficial part to take the “heart of themother yeast"The area that does not come into contact with the air. To 200 grams of yoursmother yeast, add the same amount (so 2oo grams) of organic flour and half (100 grams) of water until you get a new total compound of 500 grams. The water should not be poured all over but gradually: check how much it can absorb, so you may need to decrease or slightly increase the dosage.
5) Knead for a few minutes until you get a soft and non-sticky consistency. Place in a new glass container covered, once again, with a perforated film. Let it rise for another 24 hours at room temperature. In this context, themother yeastwill increase in volume.
6) After 24 hours, refresh yours again mother yeastas described in points 4 and 5. Repeat the same operations for 14 days. On the fifteenth day, yoursmother yeastit will have large alveoli as shown in the photo above. To check if the sourdough is active and ready to use, you will need to refresh it once more and leave it at room temperature for 4 hours: if it rises tripling its volume then it is ready to be used!
Those who want to shorten waiting times, instead of yogurt, can use specially selected yeasts for the preparation ofsourdough.
Thanks tonatural yeastas soon as it is prepared it is possible to create excellent baked products, the classic examples are given by the pizza with mother yeast.
How to make sourdough at home
If you want more information on the world ofnatural yeastand on how to prepare sourdough at home, I recommend reading the book“Sourdough. Tips and tricks for everyone to get to know and use it to the fullest ".It is suitable both for those who already know how to make natural yeast at home, and for those who are just starting out. It contains a lot of information on the flours to use and even one recipe to prepare some gluten-free yeast.
The book costs € 11.18 and can be purchased onAmazon with free shipping for those who decide to buy two books of their choice. The manual on the sourdough provides 10 recipes on how to use the mother yeastand advice on the flours to use. The natural yeastit is recommended for those who want to make sourdough at home or those who intend to prepare pizzas with particularly genuine and tasty flours.