The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

New member from Toronto

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sommerpa's picture
sommerpa

New member from Toronto

I am a new breadmaker from Toronto, Ontario.  So far I have been using a Bread Making Machine, with mixed results.  I think I am not using robust yeast, but I don't know where to find good, viable yeast.  Does anyone have any suggestions?  Best regards,  Sommerpa

Darkstar's picture
Darkstar

Sommerpa,

 

While I don't use a machine myself I do use off the shelf, bread-machine yeast in a glass jar.  It lives in my refridgerator until I'm ready to bake and it livens up quite nicely.

 

Are there any Bread Machine users out there that can give Sommerpa some ideas of what works well for you?

mariana's picture
mariana

 

Hi Sommerpa,

I don't bake in bread machine, but I am also baking bread in Toronto. Welcome and good luck with your breads!  

I buy yeast in Loblaws making sure it has a clear expiration date that I can understand on the package or cover of the glass jar.

 mariana

expatCanuck's picture
expatCanuck

I haven't lived in Toronto in several years, but I would expect that one could get a jar of yeast at the local grocery (Dominion, Loblaws ... etc.).  Note that many manufacturers make a formulation intended for bread machine use.

Failing that, try the manufacturer sites. Fleischmann's for example, has an inquiry web form that you can access here:

http://www.breadworld.com/ContactUs.aspx

I'd imagine that other reputable brands (SAF is the only other name that leaps to mind) have comparable mechanisms.

Failing that, try asking a question of the Better Baking editors (editors@betterbaking.com). BB is a Canada-based publication.

Boy, do I miss home.

Cheers,

- Richard

www.oldwithoutmoney.com

afrank's picture
afrank

Sommerpa,

Do not expect great bread out of a bread machine no matter what you do. A much better approach is a food processor to mix the dough and then you bake it in an oven on a pre-heated baking stone. See Charles Van Over's The Best Bread Ever for a detailed description of the technique.

That said, your problem could be failing to distinguish between active dry yeast (big granules, must be soaked in water before mixing into the flour) and rapid rise or instant yeast (small granules, can be mixed directly into dry flour). I believe most bread machine recipes tell you to mix the yeast directly into dry flour, and therefore you would need rapid rise or instant yeast.

 All the best,

 Albert

Cooky's picture
Cooky

Bread machines seem to me to be extraordinarily sensitive to drafts or variations in temperature. If the machine doesn't like its location, the bread doesn't ever rise properly. Back when I started using mine (and I don't much anymore), I had to move mine two or three times to find a spot where it worked right. Away from doors, windows, vents, etc.

Yeast is pretty tough stuff in my experience. Unless it is crazy old or subjected to extreme heat, I've always found it holds up well.

 

"I am not a cook. But I am sorta cooky."

ejm's picture
ejm

I live in Toronto and buy Fleischmann's yeast in jars. (I buy yeast at "no frills" but it's available just about everywhere) As already mentioned, the jars have 'best before' dates stamped on top. As soon as the jar is opened, it should be stored in the fridge.

I don't have a bread machine, but I gather that you have to use instant yeast for the machine. From everything I've read about bread machines, they can be finicky and one MUST measure exactly and use exactly the right temperatures. I've tasted really good bread made in a bread machine but the person said that she had gone through several experiments to get to that recipe and rarely strayed from it because it was the only one that worked.

I make bread by hand, using either Fleischmann's active dry "traditional" yeast or the wild yeast I captured this summer. I think making bread by hand is a LOT more forgiving than making it with the machine (and not very difficult - if I can do it, anyone can....)

 

The other thing that you might look into is how much flour you're using. Remember that an American cup is smaller than a Canadian cup so if your recipe book is American, you may be adding too much flour.

1 USA cup = 240 ml

1 Cdn cup = 250 ml

It might not seem like that much difference until you start to consider the number of cups of flour that go into a loaf of bread.

 

KipperCat's picture
KipperCat

Welcome, Sommerpa.  When I had a basic bread machine, I could follow the instructions and get good white bread.  It didn't do as well with whole wheat without some additives.  My several attempts at rye netted me only  hockey pucks. But I know there are people now who bake a lot of breads in bread machines.  Some, like the Zojirushi, are very programmable, which would help a lot.  You might take a look at the topics in the bread machine forum, and see if anything jumps out.

 

 

chickadee's picture
chickadee

What type of yeast does the machine manual suggest you use? I have had a bread machine for many years, but always use just the dough cycle. Then I put the bread in a pan, on a stone (or make buns or whatever) let it rise and then bake in the oven. I have had very few failures. It might not be totally authentic, but it tastes pretty good.

P.S. I live in Ontario too, but about 300 miles north.

cleojazz's picture
cleojazz

Hi Sommerpa: I have been making bread for the past 8 months using an old Hitachi bread machine. I think success depends on a few things. Fresh yeast(I use the bread machine stuff in the jar). Precise measurement...now for this you may have to experiment. A difference of a tablespoon too much liquid can throw things off. So can substituting milk for water. When I started, I just used a recipe in the manual. Not so good. Then I started writing down how much I was putting in, and the results. Better. I went to the Bulk Barn and bought their bread machine flour. Even better.


Now, I use regular, or unbleached flour(for economy) and mix it with bread machine whole wheat flour. Satisfactory compromise. Be sure to check out 'awesome whole wheat ' recipe by Lindsay 13. It's wonderful! Glad to see a fellow Ontario cook online.  I'm baking in Windsor.