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I'm going crazy because Lievito Madre won't raise (half whole grain / half white wheat 00) my dough. Which yeast should I buy in Italy to finish with normal sandwich bread?

  • Does the yeast (it. Lievito Madre = en. sourdough starter?) work well in other breads you bake? How quickly does it double the dough you have? – Nick T Dec 17 '18 at 23:43
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    Lievito madre is not sourdough in the American sense - you could in principle count it under the sourdoughs category, but it is not the same thing that English speaking recipes mean when they say "sourdough" and does not work the same way. I have never seen it raise a bread, it just changes taste and texture. Especially if you are buying small packages in the supermarket instead of making your own and replacing significant portions of the dough with it, it is just a bit of a taste enhancer. – rumtscho Dec 18 '18 at 11:02
  • @rumtscho shouldn't be sourdough right acidic dough, i.e. pasta (lievito) madre? Or by sourdough americans/brits sell a more concentrated and or selected yeast? – Alchimista Dec 20 '18 at 9:23
  • @Alchimista americans/brits use a specific regimen for creating sourdough, or actually a family of closely related regiments, which create a preferment with a specific consistency and specific properties, and that one can usually be the sole rising agent if used in sufficient amounts. Italian lievito madre - at least the version I know - uses a different regimen, the result has entirely diffrent properties, and it wouldn't raise a dough on its own. There are further complications too, which are too long to go into this comment, such as people selling dry sourdough as a kind of "spice". – rumtscho Dec 20 '18 at 11:40
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Apparently you're a foreigner living in Italy¹ and what you got was sour dough but if you want something that you're used to already you should get:

  • "Lievito di birra2 secco" if you want dry yeast
  • "Lievito di birra" if you want the real stuff that you have to keep in the fridge.

Note¹: If you fill in a bit more about yourself in your user profile, we'll have to assume less.
Note²: Yes, "Beer yeast"... don't worry: It's a cultural thing...

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    It is a bit more than cultural. en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saccharomyces_cerevisiae – Alchimista Dec 18 '18 at 15:00
  • I couldn't find any reference to any languages that call "Baker's Yeast" "Beer Yeast" in that article? @Alchimista Could you point me to another language that call it like that? – Fabby Dec 18 '18 at 18:30
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    I don't get it. Of course it is culture what things are called. I mean there is not only culture. Bakers and brewers do/did use the same yeast. Beer is even in the name. What came first I am not sure but easy to guess Cerveza came first than Saccharomyces cerevisiae – Alchimista Dec 19 '18 at 8:53
  • Ah! Now I get yours! :D @Alchimista Talking next to one another! ;-) – Fabby Dec 19 '18 at 16:15

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