Tuesday, December 20, 2011

The Adventure with Yeast

To kick off my Christmas vacation and to prepare myself for the upcoming holiday. I decided, well, actually I had promised my husband months ago that while I was out of school I would make him cinnamon rolls. From scratch. Using yeast.

Yeast and I had never been properly introduced so I was a little nervous taking him out for our first date. My type A personality likes things very black and white. When it says double, I want to be able to take a measuring take and see that in fact it has grown from 6 to exactly 12 inches. Anything less than that or more than that is cause for panic. Baking requires you to let go and not assume that your results will always follow the recipe, or the picture. It's enough to drive a person to drink.

So I dig out the rusty, trusty, and slightly dusty (note to self: dust more) cookbook. I make the trek to the store to gather the needed ingredients and then I set off to work. As I read over the directions and estimated the total time required for these beauties, and the yeast to work it's magic, I figured that these would be no problem to whip out in an afternoon.

I followed the directions, and even went so far as to get out my thermometer to test the waters to make sure that the liquid was the perfect temperature for the yeast to do it's thing. Everything was perfect. All the planets were aligned, angels were singing, it couldn't have been more perfect. So I added the flour. Lovingly placed a clean towel over the dough, and set it in my oven so that it had a warm draft free place to rise for the next 60 minutes. I even set the timer on the microwave so that I wouldn't forget and later discover that the dough had taken over my oven and was attempting to grow to fit my house.

Cue Jeopardy music.

Ding Ding Ding!!!

Now it was time. I just knew that when I opened the oven and pulled the dough out that it would have risen to a lovely level and it would just be perfect. I held my breath in anticipation. I quickly whisked the towel away...

Holy Mother Fluffer Nutter!!!

The freaking yeast was apparently pissed. Because it might have risen .2 inches. Might.

Well played yeast, well played.

So I thought, well, it's a little humid, it's a little blah blah blah. We will just poke it back in the oven and see what happens.

Cue Jeopardy music. Lots and lots of Jeopardy music. Like 4.5 hours of music. Finally it had risen enough that I was going to pretend that it was doubled in size. Thankfully my recipe had a get out of jail free card. You could add the remaining dry ingredients and then you could put the dough in the refrigerator and you had 3 days to use it. Awesome. Because now it's 9pm, and I don't want to stay up until 2 am making cinnamon rolls.

So I added the ingredients. Well, the dough was a little too dry for their to be any stirring involved. So I basically had to manipulate it in my hands (aka knead) to get those ingredients incorporated. I plopped the dough in a bowl, covered it with plastic wrap and put it in the fridge. Figuring I would tackle it when I got home from work yesterday.

That is until some unknown force caused me to open the door to the refrigerator at 11 pm. Uh, you remember that dough that wouldn't rise. Well, it was rising now. Like another 1.5 hours and it would have taken over a shelf in my fridge.

Nuts and bolts!

So after a reluctant call to my mother, and some relaying of information. I discovered what I did wrong (apparently the yeast is like a man and likes to be played with before you can expect him to rise to the occasion). So we divided the dough up into 4 bowls (just to be on the safe side), and hoped that it wouldn't take over my fridge during the wee hours of the night.

Thankfully the dough didn't take over my fridge, and half of it has already been made, baked and shipped off to it's new home. Round 2 will commence tonight. I'm thankful that I have tackled this cooking adventure. I'm thankful that the dough didn't wind up in the dumpster.

Yeast 1 - Abby 0

No comments:

Post a Comment


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...