Making Your Own Yeast for Bread

I guess I have too much time on my hands here in Freeport but I decided to try making bread from my own yeast and thought I would share the process with you. My friend, Sohee Mishra, inspired me to try this after seeing her post about it. I am using some of her instructions. This will hopefully allow me to cut down on the cost of bread because my favourite is now $7.50 a loaf for ezekiel bread.

Day 1

Place 100 grams of raisins (roughly 1 cup- I used organic Thompsons) in a jar with a lid (I used a mason jar that is slightly less than a quart) so that when you have the water (1 1/4 cup) and the raisins in jar it takes up approximately 80% of the space. As you can see mine is a little bigger so we will see if that still works. Place the jar on the counter and let sit 24 hours, periodically opening the jar to allow oxygen in. (maybe 3 or 4 times)

Day 2

Turn the jar over an gently swirl. I noticed a few raisins were floating and there were a few bubbles. All is good. Let sit 24 hours again opening jar 3 or 4 times

Day 3

Same as day 2 & more raisins should be floating and a bit more bubbles.

Day 4

This is the day mine were all floating and smelled yeasty & fermented. I began the first stage of creating the sour dough. Add 80 g of yeast water (worked out to be roughly 1/3 of a cup) to 80 g of whole spelt flour (was close to 3/4 cup) to a jar and mix thoroughly. Like Sohee Mishra, I did two different jars- one had the raisin water without raisins and the other had approximately 1/3 cup of the raisins left in. Allow to rise till doubled, I put a sticky note on the jar to let me know when it is ready. I also placed mine in the sun since my house is a little cool. It rose to double in 7 hours but could take longer depending on temperature in your house. I did 2nd step same day - you stir the mixture to release gas and then add another 80 g of yeast and 80 g of water (use filtered if can but I used tap water because I have amazing well water with no chemicals added). This took another 5 hours to rise and I then did previous step again adding 1/3 cup of water & 3/4 cups flour. At this point it was bedtime and I wasn't sure whether it would survive being left overnight so I left 1 jar on the counter and put the other one in the fridge.

Day 5

Both batches looked fine and were doubled - Time to make the bread!

This is what I did to make the bread:

#1 Currant & Cinnamon Loaf

I stirred down the sour dough and placed 1 cup of sour dough into bowl & added 2 cups of spelt flour and approximately 1/3 - 1/2 cup currants, 1 heaping tsp. of ceylon cinnamon, 2 tbsp. melted butter (you can use olive oil if you are vegan), 1 tsp. salt, 1 tbsp. water

knead until mixed & form into round loaf, cut a cross on the top, let rise until approx. double (may not rise that much) & bake in 375º oven for 25 minutes. Yours may take a little longer depending on your oven. Cool at least 20 min before slicing

*critique- I found the texture looked wonderful but the bread was dry so I will try adding more liquid next batch. It was good with butter. Tomorrow I will try it toasted.

Spelt Seed Bread

1 cup sour dough, 2 cups spelt flour, 1/4 cup mixed seeds (I used pumpkin, sunflower, sesame & flax) and mixed half the seeds in and left 1/2 out, 2 tbsp melted butter, 1 tsp. salt & 1 tbsp water. I rolled the dough around the rest of seeds until they stuck to the outside & baked same as other but left for 30 min.

*critique- had to freeze this because I won't have a chance to eat within next few days. If it is any different I will update. It was about the same.

The remainder of the yeast water & raisins are still in my fridge but will probably throw out soon. (can be kept roughly 7 days)

The dough is also in my fridge and I will most likely add to it in a few days- You feed it the 80 g water & 80 g flour and let rise This you can do to keep the sour dough alive until it looses its oomph and I am not sure how long that will take but should be able to keep it going a few months.

I will let you know when I make the next batch whether or not I am able to eliminate the dryness.

Oct. 24- I fed the dough again and tried another loaf of bread but have to admit I forgot to set the timer so it was done a bit longer than I would have liked. It was moister than first loaf though.

#2 To 1 cup sour dough I added 2 cups spelt flour, 1 tsp. salt, 1 tbsp. olive oil (I will add more next time), 2 tbsp. honey, 1 tbsp. flaxseed. I mixed 1 tbsp. pumpkin seeds, 1 tbsp. sunflower seeds & 1 heaped tbsp. sesame seeds. I added approximately 1 tbsp to the dough. Knead and when finished I rolled the dough in remainder of seeds to coat. I will update as I change until I get what I consider my best loaf. Good luck with yours and let me know if it works for you and if you come up with a really good recipe. Take care oops, I forgot to include the liquid and am pretty sure it was 3- 4 tbsp of almond/coconut milk.

I made another loaf this evening after feeding the dough again (this time I added the rest of the raisin water which didn't quite amount to the 1/3 cup so topped up with water). #3 To make bread I added 1 cup spelt flour and 1 cup sprouted rye flour, 2 tbsp. honey, 2 tbsp. olive oil, 1 tsp. salt, 1 cup sour dough, 1 tbsp. flaxseed, 1 tsp. of caraway seeds & same seed mixture as above (1 tbsp. added to the dough & the rest used to roll dough in). The loaf was definitely more moist but at the same time it was heavier. oops, I don't know why I keep forgetting the liquid which was about 2 tbsp. The longer this loaf sat the more it was like a heavy moist rye bread, it had a nice flavour but I didn't like the doughy texture.

#4 trying again. I fed dough an hour prior to making. 1 Cup spelt flour, 1 cup sprouted rye, 1 cup sour dough, 2 tbsp. olive oil, 2 tbsp. honey, 2 tbsp. almond milk, 1 tbsp. water, 1 tsp. salt, 1 tsp. caraway, 1 tbsp. flaxseed, same seed mixture as previous. Way too heavy! I am going back to the drawing board and trying a different sour dough. Stay tuned........