The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Shortage of yeast (instant & active dry)

Bread obsessed's picture
Bread obsessed

Shortage of yeast (instant & active dry)

No yeast available... options?

When quarantines and stay-home directives started to be announced, I told myself that I'd at least have much more time to make bread! (4 months into this new hobby).

I always have plenty of flour... but no yeast!! Although I plan to try it, I'm still a bit grossed out by starter jars... any other suggestions?

idaveindy's picture
idaveindy
  • The Aldi store that I patronize in Indianapolis has those 3-pack packets of yeast.  That's not a guarantee that all Aldis have them, but a good sign.
  • check your local grocery for fresh yeast. Maybe that was not discovered or thought of by the panic-buyers.
  • One user here at TFL reported that his local Indian grocery store had yeast, though he needed twice as much to equal the regular US brands.

 If you want to bypass the "stinky phase" of creating a starter from scratch, you could still get into sourdough by begging or buying a dehydrated starter culture.  Mix it with water, feed, and in 7 to 10 days you're ready to bake.  (10 days to make sure it is balanced and mature.)  

$10.99 seems to be  the going rate at Amazon, and at other reputable commercial outfits such as breadtopia.com, and culturesforhealth.com.

A non-profit outfit is at carlsfriends.net, just send a SASE and a $1 donation.  Takes 3 to 5 weeks becasue they do it in batches.  This is a unique culture that, in my opinion, is unlike typical "San Francisco" style starters.

Getting a starter going from established dehydrated culture took the fear out of it for me, and removed that hurdle.  

You could also ask one of the TFL-ers who you trust, via private msg, and they would likely send you some dehydrated culture from their starter.

Bread obsessed's picture
Bread obsessed

I'm in Canada, so no Aldis, but I didn't know dehydrated starter existed, thanks the tip!

idaveindy's picture
idaveindy

who is also in Canada, in a private message, and see if she can send you some of her dehydrated starter. That way, you'll get some of the magic that makes her loaves so mouth-watering.

To rehydrate dried starter see: https://breadtopia.com/faq/how-to-reactivate-dehydrated-starter/

and/or this video: https://breadtopia.com/starter_instructions/

It's not an instant restoration, still takes 7 to 10 days.  When I re-hydrate/re-activate, the starter doubles on day 4, but I give it a few more days to mature and balance out the LAB and wild yeast.

JeremyCherfas's picture
JeremyCherfas

I haven't tried this, but Farrel Monaco https://tavolamediterranea.com/ has been posting about a 48-hour bread that uses no yeast. I cannot find it on her site, but she has produced a couple of videos https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RwLYUYW3uBY

loydb's picture
loydb

Amazon still has instant yeast available, at least as of yesterday.

 

https://www.amazon.com/Saf-Instant-Yeast-Pound-Pouch/dp/B0001CXUHW/

idaveindy's picture
idaveindy

Yeah, but... As of April 2, 2020, 10:50am EDT, that item is only available from 3rd party sellers. And at double the normal price.

 

loydb's picture
loydb

Given how long a pound of yeast lasts me, I can amortize the extra ~$12 at 1 dollar a month. You wanted yeast, it's there. You want cheap yeast, you're probably going to have a hard time.

If you just need a few packets' worth, I'll be happy to send you some.

Or you can go full-on sourdough, which is what I mostly do.

 

 

idaveindy's picture
idaveindy

You're right. That would still put it in the price range of the yeast that is sold in packets.

loydb's picture
loydb

To paraphrase the Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers, 'Yeast will get you through times with no money better than money will get you through times with no yeast.'

 

I'm pretty sure that's how the quote went...

 

Bread obsessed's picture
Bread obsessed

With shipping to my house, this 1lb bag is $50 CAD ($25 of shipping for slowest method).  I usually pay $5 for 100g jars (0.22 lbs).  $5x 4.54= $22.17.  So for me this bag is $27 more, not $12 :)

That being said, I may still go for it considering how much bread I make with 1 lb, and my desperation to have something fun to do!! 

I also finally gave in and got a starter going, so it will depend on how successful that is... 😁

loydb's picture
loydb

Canada gets hosed so hard on stuff like that. My Canadian cigar nerd friends pay upwards of $20 for a stick I can get for $6-$7 in the US.

Bread obsessed's picture
Bread obsessed

Yup!... that's why we love to shop in the US 😁

Valuesaver's picture
Valuesaver

Wow! I bought only for 5.99 plus shipping at supplybox.ca

 

Bread obsessed's picture
Bread obsessed

My experience as well.  And I'm in Canada, price even higher :(

sarafina's picture
sarafina

I was stuck yeastless as well. I have cultured my own starter, but didn't want to wait that long to start baking (we were out of bread) so I posted on my Nextdoor and asked if anyone had a starter they would share and 10 minutes later I was hooked up with another local baker with a great starter named Godric. Since then it's become a thing in our neighbourhood, with peeps putting baggies of starter up on nearby telephone poles to share with the community. I would try putting a shout out on your Nextdoor. If you haven't a Nextdoor account you can get one free.

Bread obsessed's picture
Bread obsessed

That's great, thank you!

loydb's picture
loydb

I'm doing the same thing with my neighborhood, I've got a half-dozen people wanting starter, and I've been milling flour for people who can't find any at the store. There's going to be a whole bunch of new people around me who are baking with fresh milled whole grain flour these days -- I'm curious to see how they feel about the difference.

 

 

Our Crumb's picture
Our Crumb

I haven’t read all the replies above but in case nobody’s suggested it — You could make yeast water. In fact, that is the easiest solution for the thousands of people who want to bake now and can’t find CY and don’t want to wait for a sd culture to be ready. And YW makes bread like CY — not sour.  Search here for Yeast Water or Raisin Yeast Water or RYW. 

Tom

Valuesaver's picture
Valuesaver

You can 1 lb instant yeast or 2lb active dry yeast from supplybox.ca