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Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Baking in a Foreign Language (Oops!)


Who needs to read French when there’s pictures?
I do.  With the bread image I was sure this was
yeast.  I was wrong.

Aka -- Lost in Translation

I love the Caribbean French territories we’ve visited… Martinique, Guadeloupe, St. Martin, St. Barts…. Yes, my rudimentary French from 30 years ago is pretty rusty, but not enough to daunt my cooking hubris.

For those of you equally daring – and inept…

If you’re baking bread using French language ingredients, be aware there is a significant between difference between levure chimique and levure boulangère.

Levure chimique:  baking powder
Levure boulangère:  yeast

If you’d like your bread to rise, do not mistake levure chimique for levure boulangère.  If you proof it (add a little water and pinch of sugar to it) it will foam like yeast does.  But the bread, without yeast, will not rise.  It will fall, though, into the trash; uneaten, unless you’re fond of gnawing on a baked version of a shotput.

Now I know why the stuff I bought, levure chimique, was cheaper.

If anyone needs some extra baking powder and is traveling my way, give me a shout.  I have extra to share.