Old Yeasts - was hist-brewing: Kvass

Barnacle Bill bill at bracewel.demon.co.uk
Sun Jul 6 00:37:46 PDT 2003


In message <004001c34362$2c4fa920$3450ef42 at burningwdgfqg5>, Hiram Berry 
<burningb at burningbridges.com> writes
>Scotti wrote:
>
>>       Yes, but in Markham's day, the yeasts had not been selectively bread
>> apart for four hundred years.  I wouldn't recommend doing that today.
>
>All punniness aside Scotti :) , your observation makes the opposite point.
>That specialization is modern!  The yeast strains diverged only in the last
>few centuries: the baker's yeasts today aren't what were used for baking in
>Markham's time and the brewer's yeasts today aren't either.  So using modern
>strains for either activity likely won't yield a very accurate recreation.
>The yeasts used IMO were the same in Markham's era or the Old Kingdom.  The
>vocational specialization is reflected by the modern innovation of pure
>culturing,
<snip>

Might I postulate that brewers yeast is nearer the 'missing link' than 
bread yeast...

I've baked bread with yeast straight from a traditional brewery and the 
bread came out fine.  The only difference I could see was a much 
frothier barm pot than I am used to baking with.  (This might have been 
due to the active nature of the yeast I set off with).  Taste and 
structure of the bread was fine.

The wild 'yeast repository' theory sounds interesting tho.


-- 
Barnacle Bill




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