Cider Yeast Bread
By Mike on Friday, October 10, 2008, 22:57 - Permalink
In the process of making cider, I had some yeast sediment to discard - this is wild yeast that occurs naturally on the skins of the apples - I couldn't help wondering if I might be able to use it to make bread.
It all started with a half centimetre layer of buff-coloured sediment left over in the bottom of the bottle - the product of a two week fermentation of natural, pure fresh pressed apple juice - nothing added or removed.
Yeast is a single-celled micro-organism classified as a fungus - unlike green plants, it cannot manufacture its own food so it feeds on carbohydrates - sugars and starches.
When this process happens in an environment deprived of oxygen, the yeast cells are forced to respire anaerobically - and one of the waste products of this is alcohol.
There are different strains of yeast in cultivation, each having been selected for a different purpose - so bread yeast is not usually the same variety as wine, beer or cider yeast.
That doesn't mean they can't be used interchangeably, of course - and doing so can sometimes yield interesting results - which is exactly what I'm hoping will happen here.
I mixed it with a couple of tablespoons of plain white flour and enough water to make a softish batter. I covered it with plastic film and left it to ferment for a while.
The next morning, the starter seemed to be bubbling away nicely, so I mixed it into a simple bread dough - a pound of flour, half a pint of water, a little salt.
It took all day to rise to double its original volume, by which time the dough was very relaxed and soft.
I tipped it onto an oiled tray and baked it
The result was a nice-looking and great-smelling loaf - a bit flat and heavy though - I think probably a full 24 hours resting would be required to properly develop the yeast to get a presentable loaf.
The taste was very good though - with a great aroma and sweet, but tangy flavour. The yeast flavour was quite noticeable - and not everybody likes that - but I do.
A partial success then - I've proven it's possible to use cider yeast sediment to make bread - I just haven't perfected it.