Brewer's yeast is a very versatile ingredient in the kitchen, very good especially for the preparation of bread, pizzas and focaccias. If you want to avoid waste, you can freeze your brewer’s yeast in the freezer and defrost it if necessary. In fact, in the refrigerator the brewer’s yeast will hardly last more than seven days, while if frozen it can be preserved for up to a month. An important rule is to be careful to freeze the brewer’s yeast tightly closed, in fact it is essential that it does not come in contact with air. Here are some tips to keep brewer’s yeast at its best.
Brewer's yeast is a very versatile ingredient in the kitchen, ideal especially for the preparation of bread, pizzas and focaccias. Small quantities are generally used for various recipes, the equivalent of half a piece of brewer’s yeast or even a quarter. The good news is that yes, the brewer's yeast can be frozen.
If you want to avoid waste then you can keep your brewer’s yeast in the freezer and defrost it if necessary. In fact, if kept in the refrigerator the brewer’s yeast will hardly last more than seven days, before changing its properties, while if frozen it can be preserved for up to a month. An important rule is to be careful to freeze the brewer’s yeast tightly close, in fact it is essential that it does not come in contact with the air.
Instead of fresh brewer’s yeast, you can use dry yeast, to be reactivated in lukewarm water and sugar, or instant dry yeast in granules. But if you don't want to give up the softness that gives your doughs, here are some tricks and tips on how to best freeze the brewer’s yeast.
How to freeze brewer's yeast
Freezing brewer’s yeast is a very simple process. The fundamental step is to make sure that the brewer’s yeast does not come in contact with the air, and that it is tightly closed before putting it in the freezer.
You can safely freeze it wrapped in its packaging, if the paper is not damaged or torn. Alternatively, wrap the brewer’s yeast in cling film or in a tightly closed freezer bag, taking care to let the air out.
You can freeze both a whole piece of brewer’s yeast but also a small part that has not been used. After about 60 minutes in the freezer, the yeast will be completely frozen, well maintained and ready to be reused in your preparations.
How to defrost brewer's yeast
Defrosting brewer’s yeast is as simple as freezing it. Remove it from the freezer and let it soften in its wrapping. To help the process, cut the brewer’s yeast loaf into pieces and dissolve it in lukewarm water. You can use it as a normal stick of fresh brewer’s yeast.
How long the frozen brewer's yeast lasts
Brewer's yeast has an expiration date. Usually, in fact, the fresh brewer’s yeast kept in the refrigerator lasts about a week, before altering its properties.
If frozen, however, the brewer’s yeast can be preserved much longer, even beyond the expiration date indicated on the package. Generally, the storage time of the brewer’s yeast is one month.
You can still use frozen brewer's yeast, even if in the freezer it has passed the expiration date indicated on the package, consuming it within a few weeks. You can freeze it even if it is a few days before the expiration date, but avoid putting expired brewer’s yeast in the freezer to ensure a good result in the preparation.
How to tell if the brewer's yeast has expired
Understanding whether the brewer's yeast has expired or it is no longer usable is very simple. In general, the brewer’s yeast has a grayish color and it easily crumbles to the touch. So do not use the brewer’s yeast if it has a brownish color, if you notice some mold, or if it is sticky by touching it with your fingers.
A sure-fire method to understand if brewer’s yeast can still be used is to dissolve a teaspoon of sugar in a glass of warm water. Stir the dough until it melts completely. If the brewer’s yeast is still good, it will reactivate within ten minutes, forming a froth and small bubbles on the surface.
To maintain its properties unaltered, you can defrost the brewer’s yeast directly in a glass with lukewarm water (no more than 40-42°) and adding a teaspoon of sugar to reactivate it. Be careful not to dissolve it in too hot a liquid, this thing would cancel its leavening function.
If you usually use only a few grams of brewer’s yeast, before freezing it you can divide it into small portions and put it in the freezer in several well-closed bags. In this way it will be easier to regulate yourself with the doses and you will avoid waste also the following times.