Why does my bread making machine have a separate dispenser for yeast?
has a separate compartment for yeast because the timing of WHEN the yeast hits the liquids is important to making yeast bread. Some machines want you to put the yeast in first, lay in all the dry ingredients, then put all the quiquids on top, others reverse this procedure (I’ve had both kinds of machines) and your machine is the third kind–it keeps it separate and controls the contact completly. All work fine, but a yeast on the top machine won’t produce good bread if you stack it yeast on the bottom–the machine cycle is designed around when the liquid and yeast come into contact, so following the machine’s instructions your machine provides is important. NOW the sugar issue… Sugar feeds the yeast, salt retards the yeast’s action, and a balance between the two is important to control the yeast’s growth and development for flavor and rise. SOme recipes leave out the sugar–these loaves or batches will be low-rising breads–pizza crust, french bread. The yeast is feeding, more slowly
If you are using the delay timer, keeping the yeast out of contact with the liquids so it isn’t activated too soon. And, most bread includes salt, which can retard the action of the yeast. Keeping the yeast from contact until the salt has been mixed in prevents poor rising bread. No sugar to feed the yeast is why french bread has a different setting from regular white bread. The yeast takes longer to break down the sugars in the bread flour, so the bread must be given longer to rise. You can definitely make bread added without fat. Check out http://whatscookingamerica.net/Bread/FrenchBread.htm and the other low fat breads and tips for preparing them that they offer.
I ALWAYS like to “proof” my yeast! Put WARM (appr. 100 – 103 degree F) water in a cup, stir in the amount of yeast called for in the recipe. Let it set in a warm place for 10 – 15 minutes. If it bubbles puffs up and emits that beautiful yeasty aroma, you have some good and alive yeast, dump it into the machine with your other ingredients. I always like to feed my yeast, even on French bread. When making a non-sweet bread (like French), use the same amount of sugar as yeast, by volume. (that is, if you have 1 tsp of yeast, when dry, feed it with 1 tsp of sugar.) As for the fat issue, I don’t “think” you can make truly fat-free bread… at least not fit to eat! I know it’s difficult, but make your bread GOOD… then try as much as possible to eat it in moderation! Sources: From my kitchen to yours!
Yup, sugar is great food for yeast to eat. However, there are some breads that just don’t want to be the least bit sweet — like a French bagette etc. Seems like a contradiction but it really isn’t. Sugar is the fast-track way of getting the yeast active and (well) flatulent. But remember that flour (wheat) contains starches and sugars — they just aren’t as plentiful or “available” as when you toss in a tablespoon or so of sugar. Bread without any fat will also work, it will yield a distinctive texture, however, because the oil helps “break up” the protien structure of the bread. Without oil, the gluten/protiens will be able form longer links and you’ll get a “rougher” artisan-style texture. As far as the separate yeast dispenser, I imagine that your machine is designed to add the yeast at the optimal time by the optimal method that the manufacturer decided on. If it were my machine, I’d try putting the yeast in the main compartment and see what happens. You can always make bread crum