Substituting instant yeast...

Discussion in 'Baker Banter' started by -Daniel-, Mar 8, 2018.

  1. -Daniel-

    -Daniel- Well-Known Member

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    Today I want to make doughnuts / donuts, and the recipe I like best calls for instant yeast (that in the UK and Ireland, typically comes in sachets of 7g).

    Is it possible to substitute this with regular yeast? I presume the recipe will be the same, except I'll have to dissolve the yeast in water first and maybe adjust the proofing times?

    For reference, the recipe I want to use is this: https://www.bbc.co.uk/food/recipes/jam_doughnuts_90953
     
    -Daniel-, Mar 8, 2018
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  2. -Daniel-

    Norcalbaker59 Well-Known Member

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    Hello Daniel, hope all is well with you.

    Yes you can substitute The instant yeast with active dry yeast one for one. And you’re correct all you have to do sprinkle it over the lukewarm water to dissolve it. I like to stir in a teaspoon of sugar to my liquid first, then sprinkle the yeast over the surface and let it sit.

    Active dry yeast takes longer to work since it is a different strain of yeast. But I prefer it in most applications as Instant yeast has a powerful first rise, but a mediocre second rise. The reason being is instant yeast develops 50% faster. So it plows through its food sources at twice the rate. Once a gobbles up it’s food source it starts to die off.
     
    Norcalbaker59, Mar 9, 2018
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  3. -Daniel-

    Becky Administrator

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    When you say regular yeast, are you referring to active dry yeast or fresh yeast? If you're using active dry yeast then you can substitute in equal parts (although the rise might take longer), but if you're using fresh yeast then you need quite a bit more.
     
    Becky, Mar 9, 2018
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  4. -Daniel-

    -Daniel- Well-Known Member

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    hi everyone! In the end I did find instant yeast, and used 14g as suggested, left the doughnuts to proof for the alloted time - but they rose so much and so quickly! I had to break in and reprove the dough twice - even as I was starting to fry them, the ones waiting doubled in size!

    Any idea why this happened? proving area too hot?
     
    -Daniel-, Mar 10, 2018
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  5. -Daniel-

    Norcalbaker59 Well-Known Member

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    Wow that must’ve been some really powerful yeast!

    The yeast to flour ratio is nearly 3%. While not an extraordinary amount, it’s a bit more than you normally see in a homemade doughnut recipe. You could reduce it by half and still have plenty of yeast to do the job.

    I’m not a fan of instant yeast. As I mentioned earlier, the strain of yeast develops 50% faster than active dry yeast. So it has a powerful first rise.

    You could try using active dry yeast for a slower more manageable fermentation and proofing.

    Did you use a high-protein flour? The recipe calls for strong flour since gluten is really important both in the dough development as well as the frying of doughnuts.

    Also the amount of yeast in this recipe means it needs a strong gluten network.


    You could also try a different recipe.

    The link below is to a recipe I have used many times. I’ve always had good results with it. I use bread flour and active dry yeast. I recommended this recipe to another poster here recently; she too had good results with it after struggling with another doughnut recipe.

    This recipe doesn’t contain a lot of yeast. So depending on your dough temperature and the temperature of your kitchen the rise may take a bit longer.

    https://www.christinascucina.com/perfect-yeast-doughnuts-sugar-filled-jam-nutella-cream/

    The temperature of the finished dough (dough that’s been mixed and ready to proof) is far more important than the temperature of the kitchen. If the temperature of the finish dough is high to begin with, then there’s no controlling the yeast development.

    You want your finished oh temperature to be between 78°F - 82°F (25.6°C - 27.8°C).

    Before you begin mixing take the temperature of all your ingredients, including the flour. Flour will warm
    up sitting in a warm house. When I’m working with yeast in the summer or running the furnace in winter, I will check the temperature of my flour to ensure it’s not too warm, or too cold.

    The ferment or first rise has a very narrow ambient temperature window of 80° - 85° F (26.7° to 29.4° C).

    I place my dough in an off oven. Add humidity by putting a small shallow pan of boiling water on the oven floor about 20 minutes before I put the dough in.


    I place an instant read thermometer on a tray in the oven to monitor the temperature. Using this method I’m able to keep the temperature on the lower end of the range, sometimes 1° - 2° below.

    When proofing, the second rise after shaping, the ambient temperature can be between 95°F - 100° F(35° - 37.8° C). There must be humidity at these temperatures. If the air is dry a crust will form on the dough.

    Personally I don’t like to go above 95°F (35°C). Higher temperatures worry me.

    I turn on the oven light to provide some controlled heat in the off oven.

    I know you don’t have a full size oven, but you should be able to use it as a makeshift proofing box.
     
    Norcalbaker59, Mar 10, 2018
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  6. -Daniel-

    -Daniel- Well-Known Member

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    Thanks Norcalbaker! Your tips are so so helpful, just like always!

    In terms of flour... I bought the only "bread flour" I could find in Mexico, but it was from an independent kosher bakery so they weren't able to tell me the protein content.

    I've found a 15% protein flour, but it's for brown bread. Would that work in doughnuts? For some reason I can't imagine a "brown" doughnut being very tasty

    I'm gonna try checking my flour temperatures in the future, sounds like a good idea. From your suggestion, it was definitely too hot for the first tise. How do you measure it? What type of thermometer?
     
    -Daniel-, Mar 11, 2018
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  7. -Daniel-

    Norcalbaker59 Well-Known Member

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    Ohhhh you’re in Mexico again! I thought you went back to the UK! Ok are you at high altitude? If so, that will explain a lot! And Mexican flour too...the flour there is lower protein. Their AP is comparable in protein to cake flour.

    But if you’re at high altitude, that will have a major effect on yeast dough. Let me. I’ll go through the high altitude if you in fact live in the heavens:)

    Oh, and yes, 15% protein will make great bread, but not a good doughnut.
     
    Norcalbaker59, Mar 11, 2018
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  8. -Daniel-

    -Daniel- Well-Known Member

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    Yep! I'm back in Mexico, I was only in the UK for Christmas.

    The altitude is a nightmare here, changes everything!
     
    -Daniel-, Mar 12, 2018
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    Norcalbaker59 Well-Known Member

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    Ohhhh the high-altitude explains so much! But much to your credit you keep tackling your baking projects over and over again until you make it work. Kudos!

    Almost all recipes are developed for sea level. Baking at high altitude is such a challenge most recipe developers run from it.

    The higher the altitude, the lower the air pressure. The lower air pressure means a rapid rise on every thing. Doesn’t matter if the leavening is from yeast, chemical leavening, or whipped egg whites—the low pressure allows for a must softer cellular structure. So the air bubbles are not as contained.

    Water boils at a lower temperature, so baked goods dry out during baking.

    These are some of the general guidelines for different baked goods at high altitude. I will say I’ve done very little baking at high altitude. It’s limited to cooking in rented cabins in the mountains on ski and hiking trips. These guidelines are general.


    =========

    Yeast doughs

    Yeast type: as you witnessed, yeast dough rises at a phenomenal rate at high altitude. Throw in instant yeast and high altitude together and you have a beast beyond control. Use active rise yeast.

    Reduce yeast: even with active dry yeast there will be rapid development. So reduce the amount of yeast by 20% - 25%. I would start with 25% less yeast.


    Reduce rise time: even with active dry yeast and less of it, the dough will still rise about 25% - 59% faster than at sea level. Check your dough after half the stated rise time in the recipe. Then depending on the development, check every 5 minutes thereafter.


    I like to put my yeast dough in a straight sided container. In that way it’s easier to tell how much it has increased in bulk.


    Cool temperature: since heat encourages yeast development, try to keep the dough as cool as possible.


    Consider chilling your flour for 30 minutes before mixing. In that way the finished dough will cool at the beginning of the rise.


    If it is particularly warm in your kitchen, after mixing, place the dough in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes. Then let it finish rising on the counter.


    Addition rise: if after changing the type of yeast, reducing the amount of yeast it still grows rapid and wild, add another rise. So if the recipe has two rises, add a third.


    Ambient humidity: lower air pressure means dryer air. To keep the dough from drying out, cover the bowl with plastic wrap or a just damp clean tea towel. Make sure the bowl is deep enough so the dough will not come in contact with the plastic/towel as it rises.



    ==============


    High altitude baking tips for other baked goods.


    Low air pressure causes rapid development of leavening bubbles. The increased pressure and rapid expansion can cause the batter to overflow while baking; the gluten structure to fail, and the cake to collapses; sugar to concentrate and prevent batter from setting.


    To counter these effects increase oven temperature, decrease baking time and make adjustments to the amount of ingredients.


    For all baked goods, adjust oven temperature and they time.


    Oven temperature: increase oven temperature by 25°F (15°C).


    Baked time: reduce bake time by a third. Begin checking for doneness early.


    For ingredient adjustments

    begin with reduced amount of leavening and sugar. If the cake still has structural issues, reduce the fat and increase the flour and egg.



    Chemical Leavening: reduce leavening by 1/8 - 1/4 tsp per 1 tsp leavening in recipe.


    Mechanical leavening: for sponge, angel food, and chiffon cakes, beat egg whites to soft peaks and not firm or stiff peaks stage.


    Sugar: reduce sugar by 6 g (1/2 TBSP) - 12 g (1 TBSP) per 125g flour. The higher the altitude, use less sugar.


    =============


    Fat: reduce fat by 1/2 tablespoon per 125g flour


    Flour: increase flour by 10g per 125g flour in recipe.


    Egg: add 1/2 - 1 whole egg per RECIPE. Some bakers only add an extra egg white. But dryness and crumbly texture are common at high altitude. So the extra fat from the yolk may be needed.


    ==========


    Water boils at a lower temperature at high-altitude. So moisture in baked goods begin to evaporate sooner. If after adjusting your oven temperature and bake time your baked goods are dry, increase the liquid by 15ml - 20ml per 240 ml.


    ==========


    Macaron: the link below addresses baking macarons at high altitudes. The cookbook authors had pastry chefs test their recipes in high altitude. The adjusted measurements are included, but not the mixing instructions. Since it’s for a French Macarons just use the standard French method.


    https://www.lespetitsmacarons.com/high-altitude-baking-tips/

    A straight sided container let you better judge the amount of expansion. Even still do the poke test to determine whether or not the dough is ready.

    CFDFF884-BE7F-4853-9C39-277EA7765982.jpeg
     
    Norcalbaker59, Mar 12, 2018
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  10. -Daniel-

    Norcalbaker59 Well-Known Member

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    I use an instant read thermometer to check the temperature of all my ingredients. Butter, flour, milk, whatever goes in the mixing bowl gets temperature checked. Mixing will increase the temperature, so I make sure ingredients are about 25°F (15°C) cooler than the desired finished dough temperature.

    I also check finished dough temperature. Mixing causes heat friction. So you want to make sure your dough hasn’t overheated from mixing.


    Simply insert an instant read thermometer into the ingredients. This very butter at this temperature went into the mixing bowl to begin creaming. I cream my butter and sugar for five minutes. Below is a photo of the dough I made with this butter. Look at the difference in temperature. That is what heat friction does to dough temperature

    2966672D-A84F-4F6A-9EA4-DD76A9D70B72.jpeg

    7854D305-82B1-4E74-A9E1-4182A3F048AC.jpeg


    Check temperature of dough after it’s been mixed. I made this dough from the butter in the first pic. It’s unfortunate that most baking sites don’t talk about the temperature of ingredients, friction heat, and finished dough temperature. You have to think of temperature as an ingredient. Baking is a chemical reaction. That chemical reaction does not happen without heat. The amount of heat and the type of heat at every step has an impact on your final baked product. So just as you control the amount of egg or sugar you put in your mixing bowl, you also have to control the amount of heat you put in there.

    68E6BB37-E828-4FA7-BF75-FE7DCF99AE22.jpeg
     
    Norcalbaker59, Mar 12, 2018
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  11. -Daniel-

    Norcalbaker59 Well-Known Member

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    BTW, getting back to the subject of yeast, active dry yeast and instant yeast are two different species of yeast. Active dry yeast develops 50% slower than instant yeast. You can even see the size difference of the granules.

    Given that large granular size of active dry yeast it works better if dissolved before you put it in flour.

    If your recipe calls for instant dry yeast, it won’t instruct you to dissolve the yeast first. You just have to remember when making the substitution to use active dry yeast to dissolve it first.


    Active dry yeast on left is much larger than the instant dry yeast on right.
    806A6493-8E13-47ED-93BA-0ED2905D6C26.jpeg
     
    Norcalbaker59, Mar 12, 2018
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  12. -Daniel-

    -Daniel- Well-Known Member

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    Wow Norcalbaker, thank you so much for taking the time to write everything out and attach pictures. I'm going to print it all so I can consult the stuff in my kitchen.

    I had no idea so many changes were necessary, I'm going to really study my recipes bearing in mind your tips and start to experiment to see how I can improve.

    There's no way I'm giving up baking, and I want to stay living in Mexico, so I'd better get used to these things haha.
     
    -Daniel-, Mar 12, 2018
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  13. -Daniel-

    Norcalbaker59 Well-Known Member

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    Well Daniel I have to take my hat off to you… Baking high altitude is hands down the most challenging of all baking. All of the rules change. It’s truly like baking in another dimension.
     
    Norcalbaker59, Mar 13, 2018
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