The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Measuring Yeast

detmsp's picture
detmsp

Measuring Yeast

I'm relatively new to making bread and have been working my way through the recipes in Ken Forkish's Flour Water Salt Yeast. I just made the Overnight 40% Whole Wheat Bread (attached a pic of it!) and it was great.  However, my bread was done proofing a few hours earlier than the book estimated it would take. I chalked this up to me possibly using more yeast than the book recommended.

For a single loaf, the book called for 1.5 grams (3/8 teaspoon) of yeast. My digital scale doesn't measure very accurately below 15 grams. And I don't have a 3/8 teaspoon measuring spoon... so I just used a 1/2 tsp measure spoon and didn't quite fill it to the top.  Not totally accurate, but it worked out well enough.

The next bread I'm going to make is the White Bread with Poolish.  For the Poolish, I will need .2 grams (1/16 tsp) yeast. That's such a small amount! I'm afraid if I try to eyeball it in a 1/4 tsp measuring spoon, I could be WAY off!  So I'm wondering how you all measure such small amounts of yeast. Do you have more accurate scales that could accurately weigh out .2 grams? Or measuring spoon sets that go to super small amounts?

Thanks!

beermanpete's picture
beermanpete

You can get an inexpensive scale on Amazon that will measure down to 0.01 gram. Search with this string: digital scale .01 gram accuracy

BaniJP's picture
BaniJP

I use similar yeast quantities for my baguette and I just eyeball it with a 1/4 teaspoon and then just read the dough. If you don't have a super sensitive scale, a very small pinch is also good enough.

ciabatta's picture
ciabatta

When the amounts are small. It’s usually just a pinch and it is better judged by how the preferment or the dough should look or feel like (eg. When the dough doubles). Since the yeast multiplied as it feeds. 1/8 teaspoon would be same as 1/4 teaspoon with a longer proofing time. Usually, the less yeast you use and the longer the dough ferments, the better flavor you get. 

The Roadside Pie King's picture
The Roadside Pi...

I use my KD8000 or larger quantities. (sensitivity 1 Gram) Then for smaller quantities, yeast, salt... I use this one.

https://www.amazon.com/AMIR-Upgraded-500g-0-01g-Stainless-Batteries/dp/B01HCKQG7G

Benito's picture
Benito

I use my 

American Weigh Scales American Weigh AC Pro 200 Digital Pocket Scale, 200 by 0.01gm purchased from amazon for all tiny weights like yeast, salt and diastatic malt.
idaveindy's picture
idaveindy

I've seen some measuring spoon sets on Amazon that go down to 1/16 tsp, and even some go down to 1/32 tsp.

If you only have a 1/8 or 1/4, you can dump it out on a plate, and using a very straight knife blade or razor blade, arrange the yeast into a line, and use the knife/razor to divide the line into two, and repeat as needed.

idaveindy's picture
idaveindy

" However, my bread was done proofing a few hours earlier than the book estimated it would take. I chalked this up to me possibly using more yeast than the book recommended."

On pages 65 and 66 of FWSY, Forkish says his formulas were tested at a daytime ambient temp of 70 F and overnight ambient temp of 65 F.

So if your kitchen is warmer, the bulk ferment and final proof times would naturally take less time than his.

Hope this helps.

The Roadside Pie King's picture
The Roadside Pi...

(Eye roll)

I have determined that my $16.00 ,Amazon, (linked above) 500Gram max @ .01 sensitivity scale is on point! I must say that 1 gram of yeast is more like a 1/2 teaspoon than a quarter tsp. 

P.S.

$1.00 = 1 Gram

1 penny = 2.5 Grams

ciabatta's picture
ciabatta

Also, different brands / type / freshness of yeast may have significant impact on its potency.