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Old 04-12-2004, 01:07 PM   #11
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Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: USA,California
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Well, Jason, I repea I'm as much a novice as you, and my knowledge of yeast brands and types is limited. I have used Fleichmann's Rapid Rise and Active Dry, Red Star Active Dry, and SAF active Dry (the se veral types available at the market I frequent). I truly have noticed little if any difference, except that I think the SAF seems to work a little better. I always simply use the entire package, regardless of the size loaf or the reicpe *which I rarely follow!).

The recipe you posted is just a stqandard white bread recipe with eggs added, and a bit more sugar than normal. The ratio of flour to water would seem to lead to a rather dry dough, resulting in a quite dense or heavy product.

As for the strarter needed for high sugar content breads, I think that is in error. Sugars - short chain carbohydrates - are a "favorite food" of yeasts, so they tend to gobble them up preferentially. Ergo a head start is not required. But giving yeast, in any case, a start in ample liquid does result in a more even distribution and more rapid rising.

As I said, longer holding of sponges (bigas, etc) result in an ever increasing intnsity of the sourdough-like flavor, If that is appropriate or desired in any breads, then it is easily attained, Challah breads vary widely, so I suppose it is a matter of baker's choice" as to the time to allow the starter to ferment.

The recipe you posted is well detailed, and I'm sure following it to the letter will result in a fine loaf.

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