Help!!! Bread did not rise.

Discussion in 'Pastries & Baking' started by Guest, Apr 24, 2010.

  1. Guest

    Guest Guest

    I have an old recipe from my Nonni which contains eggs, sugar, milk, butter, yeast, etc. Sometimes it rises & sometimes it doesn't.  It is a sweet bread and I thought the recipe called for 1 cup of sugar and the bread worked for that recipe but it wasn't as sweet as Nonn's so when I checked the recipe again ( I had reduced the recipe because my mixer couldn't handle the full recipe) I had reduced the sugar too much and it was supposed to be 2 cups of sugar. That time though the bread would not rise at all.  Does the amount of sugar and the amount of yeast affect the recipe.  I used 3 packets of dry yeast with 1 cup of sugar.  I didn't increase the yeast when I made the second recipe with 2 cups of sugar.  Should I have increased the amount of yeast when I increased the amount of sugar?
     
  2. kyheirloomer

    kyheirloomer

    Messages:
    6,367
    Likes Received:
    129
    Exp:
    Food Writer
    Have you checked the expiration date on the yeast? Sounds like that's your problem.

    How much flour in that recipe? I ask because if you've halved it, and it still calls for 2 cups of sugar, that seems like an awful lot. It might help if you posted the entire recipe.
     
  3. kuan

    kuan Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    6,721
    Likes Received:
    327
    Exp:
    Retired Chef
    1)  You need to at least  proof your yeast in warm water to make sure it's still good.

    2)  Your room may be have been too cold.

    3)  The dough may have been too cold.

    There's a formula for water+flour+air temperature.  I don't remember what it is.  You don't need it to be exact.  You can come close and have good results.  Moving this to baking.
     
  4. web monkey

    web monkey

    Messages:
    119
    Likes Received:
    12
    Exp:
    Other
    Yeast is alive, but like most other other living things is only happy in a limited rage of conditions.

    Whether or not your yeast does it's thing depends on if it was alive to begin with, but also on the chemical and physical properties of what you're putting it into and the physical (temperature/humidity/etc.) conditions where it's rising. If it's added to a solution that's too acid or alkaline or hot or cold or contains too much sugar or not enough sugar or any of a hundred other things, it won't do it's magic.  For example, a little sugar helps yeast to grow, A lot of sugar will kill it.

    Also, this might have as much to do with the order you're adding ingredients as anything else. For example, I have a recipe that makes amazing pizza dough if the yeast and sugar and part of the flour is added to the water and allowed to sit for a little while, but makes makes library paste if the salt is added first. Details are everything.

    If you post the recipe, I'm sure someone can help you make it work.

    Terry
     
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2010
  5. nichole

    nichole

    Messages:
    161
    Likes Received:
    10
    Exp:
    Restaurant Manager
    I agree.  I would check with the yeast first.  The last time I made bread, I had it sit overnight...
     
  6. Guest

    Guest Guest

    as everyone said, check the yeast.

    also make sure the sugar is not salt... believe me, it happens. too much salt kills yeast.
     
  7. kokopuffs

    kokopuffs

    Messages:
    4,333
    Likes Received:
    81
    Exp:
    Home Cook
    Do yourself a real favor and get a package of SAF Red Instant Yeast.  I've used it for over two years without proofing and it has performed just fine.  And, it keeps well in the freezer.
     
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2010
  8. benway

    benway

    Messages:
    251
    Likes Received:
    15
    Exp:
    I Just Like Food
    If your recipe calls for water and your tap water is too chlorinated that could be the culprit as well. 
     
  9. siduri

    siduri

    Messages:
    3,599
    Likes Received:
    42
    Exp:
    At home cook
    Very sweet doughs can take longer to rise.  Maybe your nonna's recipe is one of those rough old-fashioned recipes that don-t explain what she thought was obvious,.  I think proofing is not a bad idea - put some warm water in a small cup, for dry yeast, it should be like your bath would be in the winter - very warm but not burning.  sprinkle the yeast on it with a pinch of sugar, while stirring, and then leave till it bubbles.  That means it's not too old to work,  If the ingredients are warm it will rise faster, if cold it will rise slower.  It can take a day or more, and that only develops better flavor, but you may not have the time. 
    Be sure, though that
    1. you don't kill the yeast with water that's too hot.  Should be comfortable for your hand to sit in it. 
    2. you knead well until very elastic. 
    It may need a couple hours to rise, give it time. 
     
  10. kylew

    kylew

    Messages:
    1,635
    Likes Received:
    156
    Exp:
    Home Chef
    Here's something else to consider. Eggs, milk and butter all contain fat. The higher the fat content, the more difficult it is to develop gluten properly. The reason fat is referred to as shortening is that it shortens gluten strands. If you are sure that your yeast is OK, trying kneading the dough really, really, really well. Brioche dough, which has a very high fat content, has to get nearly beaten :)
     
  11. boar_d_laze

    boar_d_laze

    Messages:
    8,551
    Likes Received:
    193
    Exp:
    Cook At Home
    Originally Posted by KyleW  
    No.  Not at all true.  Where did you get that?

    Short meaning "friable" or "crumbly" has been in the English language for far longer than we've been aware of gluten strand length.  My copy of the OED cites to the early 15th C.
    Using fat shortens the dough, i.e., makes it crumbly -- like biscuits.  So, fat in baking became known as shortening.

    Frequently, very short doughs (like biscuits or pie crusts, e.g.) get very little kneading because kneading makes them tough.  Sweet bread doughs are different than those examples because you want enough chew for them to be breads. 

    The rules for kneading sweet breads very similar to more savory breads.  We evaluate by "touch" and stop kneading when the dough is elastic and east to handle rather than any set amount of time or extra kneading. 

    BDL
     
    Last edited: Apr 28, 2010
  12. jock

    jock

    Messages:
    1,310
    Likes Received:
    15
    Exp:
    At home cook
    I've been laboring under the same misaprehension as Kyle; I thought "shortening" referred to the effect of fat on gluten strands too.

    I looked up Harold McGee's explanation of the effects of shortening on bread and the short answer is, food scientists don't really know!

    For pie crusts the fat separates layers of gluten strands to make the crust tender.

    Ya learn something new every day, eh?
     
  13. kylew

    kylew

    Messages:
    1,635
    Likes Received:
    156
    Exp:
    Home Chef
     I think this may be symantics, as we seem to be referring to the same phenomenon. Fat/shortening inhibits gluten development.
     
  14. siduri

    siduri

    Messages:
    3,599
    Likes Received:
    42
    Exp:
    At home cook
    I always put the fat in bread AFTER kneading.  I read it greases the gluten strands so they slide easier and if it's put in before it's absorbed into the flour, but if it's pyut in, not melted but cold, after kneading it makes the bread lighter.  It always worked for me.  In fact julia child's recipe for brioche i remember has the butter kneaded in at the end
     
  15. aprildb

    aprildb

    Messages:
    30
    Likes Received:
    10
    Exp:
    Professional Chef
    Hi,

    Well not seeing the original recipe it's hard to determine the inconsistencies.

    What it means though is you don't do it the same every single time. This is an essential aspect of baking. If you want the same result you have to do the same thing.

    In sweet breads the yeast/sugar interaction/ratio is important. Equally important is the liquid temperature. Yeast doesn't wake up under about 110 degrees and dies if it's too hot.

    If you want a blow by blow disection of your recipe then let us know the recipe you're working with and we can see what's up with it.

    April
     
     
  16. siduri

    siduri

    Messages:
    3,599
    Likes Received:
    42
    Exp:
    At home cook
    How come, then, if i make slow rising bread, i use cold water and dry yeast and it works just fine?  I think it just takes longer, not that it doesn't wake up at all.  Too hot, though, yes, that does kill it. 
     
  17. kyheirloomer

    kyheirloomer

    Messages:
    6,367
    Likes Received:
    129
    Exp:
    Food Writer
    You're absolutely correct, Siduri. That's why we can do things like retarded fermentation in the fridge----the yeast is working, just not as vigourously as it would at a higher temperature.
     
  18. kokopuffs

    kokopuffs

    Messages:
    4,333
    Likes Received:
    81
    Exp:
    Home Cook
    At lower temperatures, a slower yeast activity allows the enzymes to have more time in converting additional starch into sugar.  That enzymatic activity translates into improved flavor and a better rise.
     
    Last edited: May 3, 2010
  19. kyheirloomer

    kyheirloomer

    Messages:
    6,367
    Likes Received:
    129
    Exp:
    Food Writer
    That enzymatic activity translates into improved flavor and a better rise.

    Well, of course, Kokopuffs. Why else would we do it?

    Just think about all the things folks like you and I do that cause us to take as much as three days to make a loaf of bread? If that final loaf were no different than one made in a bread machine what would be the point?

    Besides which, we get to use that kewl secret language. /img/vbsmilies/smilies/wink.gif

    All that aside, I wish the original poster would return. There have been a lot of suggestions here that might or might not apply, and if we could get the exact recipe, and a run-down of procedures, it would help to focus on which ones apply.