Have any of you experienced yeast not rising when it is supposed to? I can't get it to rise, EVER!!!! I even make sure the temp is right with a cooking thermometer!!!
Hi Ladybecklyn, I used to make bread all the time, never bought it until a few short years ago. Things to check for. Yeast has an expiry date, check to be sure you're getting yeast that has awhile on it's time. Also, yeast needs to eat, to grow it needs sugar or honey. Here's what I used to do. Warm about 1/2 cup of water, remember to test the temp, too hot and you'll kill the yeast, too cold and it will rise, but it'll take much longer. If you drop a little onto the inside of your wrist, it should feel a tiny bit warm, but not hot. Okay, sprinkle your yeast, or crumble it if you're using a cube, into the water. Lastly, sprinkle 1-2 teaspoons of sugar over it. Let this rest for about 10 minutes. You should see some action. Bubbles kind of. If it's just starting to do its thing, let it go for awhile longer. You can't rush this.
Make sure when you're doing the rest of your bread making that you don't get it too hot. If you try to rise it quickly in the oven or something that's too hot, you'll kill the yeast. You can actually put the bread dough, once you've got all the flour kneaded into it, in the fridge overnight. When you take it out the next morning, you'll need to let it rise for about 2 hours, but you'll have great smelling fresh bread for lunch.
I hope this helps.
Yeast that is too old will not rise, nor will it rise if there is too much salt in the dough. Check the date on the pkg. Also when you buy yeast keep it in the fridge til you are ready to use it.
If you are using traditional yeast, proof it before using (mix the package in 1/4 cup warm (not hot - which can kill it) water a smidge of sugar and if after 10 min or so it is looking like beige shaving foam, you are good to go. If it's just granules sitting in your water or sporadic foam it's dead and toss it.
If you are using rapid yeast you don't need to proof it, however you should make sure that your ingredients are warm in order to activate the yeast.
Knead your dough til it is smooth enough to handle without being excessively sticky, form into a ball and I roll it in a greased bowl so that it is shiny and then place a sheet of waxed paper and a tea towel over it and set in a warm area to rise. It should be doubled in an hour.
Good luck and let us know how it turns out.