The plan was to make a simple loaf of bread this morning. I should be enjoying its luscious fresh baked goodness right now. But I'm not. The yeast was dead.
Or just defiant maybe. I don't know. So what did I do? What any logical blogging baker would do. I started tweeting about it.
"The dough is still not there. Adding 1/2 cup more H20 with honey and hopefully more live yeast, then more flour. about 1 hour ago
Google not helpful. I'll make the recipe over and split the old dough with the new one and add some baking powder and have two loaves. about 2 hours ago
Was supposedly making a quick loaf of bread. Yeast is dead and dough won't form. Googling how to save it... "
So you see what happened. My Google search wasn't helping. I decided to improvise. Unfortunately, I had to stop tweeting, because my hands were too floury to keep going back and forth to the computer and washing them. Although I did start taking pictures when things settled down.
Instead of having enough dough for one loaf of bread, at this point I had two. I tried kneading the dead yeast dough with the live yeast dough, but it didn't work very well. I put all the dough back in the bowl then poured more honey water with live yeast on it. I took a wooden spoon and started mixing the liquid into the dough while thinking "Live! Oh please live!" I started to feel like the mad scientist in Frankenstein.
Anyway, there were no monsters, but the yeast did come alive. All the dough became fairly elastic and I was able to knead it and add more flour. But at this point, I had a ton of dough and didn't have the time nor the inclination to go through two rises and baking. I remembered reading that you can let dough do a slow rise for hours or days in the fridge. So I divided the dough into 4 balls and did a bit more kneading.
It's still not the best texture that I've dealt with. I put the dough balls into a bowl, covered it with plastic and they are now sitting in the back of my fridge. I'll deal with it tonight. I have so much dough now, that I may make two loaves of bread and some rolls.
We'll see what happens. Maybe if anyone else out there is working on Thanksgiving dinner and having dead yeast trouble, this might be some help. Or at least give you a little chuckle in the midst of your bread making angst. Oh, and Happy Thanksgiving everyone!
*Updated* I ended up with a loaf of bread and a pan of rolls. The flavor is good and they did rise, but the texture is on the heavy side, not light and airy. Overall though, I like them. The dough was saved!
In case you missed the update up top, please take a look at the new post which gives more tips!
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