Saturday, February 16, 2008

How to make your original yeast water

So are you interested?

Let me explain how to cultivte natural yeast☆.

Fruits, vegetables and all other things in natural settings have yeast around their surface.

You can separate those yeast by simply soaking them into water for several days.

Originally commercial yeast (Saf, fermipan or allstar....) were cultivated in a same way and strong yeast cells were separated and cultivated for stable fermentation (rise).

`a clean glass jar ( I use 24oz apple sauce jar from Trader Joe's)

`clean water (purified or bottoled water, tap water ok, don't use alkaline water)

`organic raisin (almost any kind of dry fruits work but raisin's yeast is strong, I prefer green raisin)

1. Put a hand ful of raisin in the jar. (*about 3-4 tablespoonful. when you put more fruits it will be done sooner)

2. pour water to fill 80% of the jar.

3. loosely close the jar.

4. leave it at room temperature.

5. wait for few days until small bubbles sufface and smells like wine.

(almost all raisins should be floating by this time)

(It would be d0ne in about 3 days in summer, 6-7dasy in winter.)

If you don't have enough amount of one kind of dry fruit, you can mix several kinds such as raisin, apricot, apple or cranberry.

6. once it's done, store it in refrigerator.

Now you have your own natural yeast water for baking!

♪ Bake at your own risk ♪


Boaz said...

Absolutely fascinating! Keep posting more about this.
I am now making my very own first yeast water... Wish me luck!

Amy said...

Ok, I just found your blog and am totally new to this. I am living in Korea and they basically don't bake here at all so my only option is to use my toaster oven/make my own yeast.

Does it have to be dried fruits? I guess I don't understand the process but there's tons of fresh produce here as well as raisins. Does it have to be a glass jar? I have a plastic peanut butter one.

Amazing! Great blog!

Unknown said...

This is very helpful. I am wondering about the amount of water I would use if my recipe called for 1T dry active yeast.

wao said...


I use preferment for baking so please refer the recipe ↓↓


Nico S said...

Extremely interesting and well done!
I have a question: does this "yeast" contain only baker's yeast (saccaromisiae cerevisiae) or some other kind of creatures such as lactobacilli?

Unknown said...

my husband is currently sailing from Rio to Cape Town, a trip which will take 3 weeks. They managed to stock up on everything they need to make bread except the yeast. I'm emailing this recipe to him so they can try to 'grow thier own' - thanks so much for you clear instructions!

wao said...

hi, nico
ummmm.I'm not sure what kind of bacterias are in the yeast water...

sorry about that...

wao said...

Hi, Amy.

Is your husband on the sea now?
It's so cool and exciting!

I hope he is able to get success from this recepi.

Nailgun said...

Hi Wao!

You seem like such an amazing baker. I only recently came on to your site trying to learn more about wild yeast and how the process works.

I notice that in this post you only mention how to get a yeast water / yeast starter from dried fruit, but I notice that some of the waters you use are from things like tomatoes and applecores. It would be great if you could update the "are you lost"-section to include the methods you use for doing yeast water from pits, and fruits which are not dried.
I saw one here:

but am not sure that's the only one you have; it's hard to find everything amongst all the posts you've made, some of which just include photos, and others that have full recipes, and others just notes.

I'd love to hear back for more details or tips on how to get a good strong yeast from different parts of fruits which are not dried.

I think I am going to try starting with organic banana peel tonight with a bit of propolis honey. I think I'm also going to try some from kiwi-skins from today. Do you think either of those could work?

Thanks Wao.

wao said...


I have not made a page to show you how to make yeast water from fresh fruits but you can see some instruction here↓↓

Basic method is same as using dried fruits.

You need clea jar, water and fruits(and sugar). Mix water and fruits together in a jar.

**You are now making kiwi yeast watar? Kiwi has 'actinidin' that breaks protein so it is not good to make bread because flour contains lots of protein.
But don't get disappointed!
Once you get the yeast water, you can use it for cooking.
Since the yeast water breaks protein, it can make meat tender. (like pineapple in hamburger ^_^!)
So soak the meat in the yeast water for 1 hour and grill it. you can get tender meat!
Or, if it is sweet, you can just drin k it for your health.

Banana yeast gives you good bread.

good luck

daddygodknittedme said...

Wao, in your last post you said that Kiwi water would not work for bread because "Kiwi has 'actinidin' that breaks protein so it is not good to make bread because flour contains lots of protein."

But I saw on a wonderful cooking show called "Cook's County Tv" by Cook's Illustrated that for breads like Cinnabuns, that they use cornstarch to break down the protiens in the break so that they bread is fluffier!

So I think that Kiwi water might be a good thing if you want fluffy bread, but I am not an expert baker.

What do you think?

wao said...

hi, daddygotknittedme.

Adding cornstarch breaks down protein...I think that method makes the flour weaker (because corn starch barely contains protein) so the bread gets fluffier.
Lots of protein in flour yield to strong gluten which tends to make chewier bread.(though not always)

I guess the phrase "break down" means several ways.

When using kiwi(, pineapple or papaya) for baking, the actinidin(, bromelain or papain) melt the dough down.really sticky and sometimes almost impossible to handle.

I guess in the show that you watched used the phrase "break down" as if the starch make friends with gluten and gluten's tight friendship breaks down....

ummm.....holding hands like the gluten power is not strong anymore. That means less chewy and fluffier.

I heard that golden kiwi yeast water makes good bread. I think golden kiwi has less actinidin?

Do you wanna try ???

Thank you for the information!
I like the cook'd illustrated magazine~!!

Julian said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
CleanLivingGal said...

I love your website, want to try making my own bread using your methods, but I wondered if you could give me a recipe for bread using U.S. measurements like 1 cup, 1/2 cup, etc.? Thanks!

wao said...

Id o not use measuring cup for baking so I do not know.....

Please refer here↓↓ to see the recipe (measure by weight)

Unknown said...

I smashed a handful of red grapes and put them in water. After one day they are fermenting strongly; I see soda-like bubbles rising to the surface. I'm wondering if it's better to start a preferment now when it's fermenting vigorously, or wait till it calms down and the yeast cells are at their peak? I actually have enough to try both ways I suppose.

wao said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
wao said...

Hi, Reuben.

I usually wait til bubbles calm down.

If you want to try and see how the preferment process goes with both yeast water, you can do so.

Please have fun with your grape yeast water!

Esther said...

thanks so much for your sharing. very informative. I followed your method to make my first fresh yeast water. but want to ask, I used to bake bread with instant dry yeast. so do u know the equilavent amount if I replace the instant dry yeast with freash yeast water? thanks a lot.

Susan Sethi Desperate mother said...

Hi my name is Susan Sethi. I live in Toronto Canada.

My son has multiple food sensitivities. He is on a rotation diet and is a patient of a Dr. Rea in Dallas Texas. Dr Rea has many patients on similar diets. We were getting our amazing bread from a co in Dallas called Francis Simun. He was able to do yeast free milk free bread out of single grains, a culture, sea salt and water. They went out of business and now I running really low on bread supplies. MY son cannot tolerate wheat but can tolerate quinoa, millet, kamut amaranth teff tapioca arrowroot yam cassava and soy potato. I am desperate to find a baker that can do yeast free wheat free bread that tastes good. Can you help me? I am willing to learn but right now just need to know if have had success with any of the above breads?

My son is only 7 years old and in his short life he has gone from almost being placed on a feeding tube b/c of his food sensitivities to an average kid and I cannot go back to the hell he experienced three years ago. Thanks to this rotation diet he and myself and my husband have been given a second chance at life. Willing to pay you or anyone who can make any of the above bread well.

We have a fed ex account so shipping would be fairly simple but expensive.

Please let me know if you have received my post

Susan Sethi 9058286090

FayLanSkye said...

What you do sounds amazing, thank you for putting this out there for all of us. :)

I do have two questions though, can I 'keep this alive' in the fridge, or use it all, and make more? Second, could I use this in a bread starter, like Amish Friendship Bread?

Thank you much.

Anonymous said...

How much yeast water do you use in recipes? How long does it last and how do you store it?

paolo said...

Morning everyone from Quito: this week I baked a couple of loaves with fruit water yeast succesfully...good flavor, longer times of raising, good raising...i'd say that people starting to approach to sourdough and are frustrated, could try this kind of get it faster (in quito, with an average temp of 18 c degrees, after 48 hours it was almost ready to use)than sourdough and the flavour is different from both sourdough and beer yeast...Recommend it! Cheers Paolo

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riley said...

how do u use ur yeast do u just pour the water in, scoop the bubbles off the top or what

Rita said...

All this sounds wonderful, but how much yeast water if recipe calls for 1 pkg (14oz) dry much yeast water do I use to substitute the dry yeast?
Am excited to try this! Always looking for natural ways to benefit my familys health.
I have also made yeast from whole wheat flour, water, and sugar...Thank you for your posts~LOVE IT!

lee said...

Hi Wao,

Your breads are beautiful! I tried 5 different jars and 4 of them are beginning to bubble. How bubbly should they be before i use them? I saw your tomato posting (wow!) and mine just have a little bubbles on the surface (the orange has the most) I bake GF so i need a strong rise. Thanks!

Alice Osborne & Jeanne Wolfley said...

Hello WAO, I so hope you keep up with your comment reading, because I'm dying to connect with you, for three reasons:
1) I write for a weekly subscription-based foodie newsletter and I want to do an article on natural yeast and quote you. I hope I have your permission? I'm including the link to your blog and giving you total credit for everything.
2) I co-write a blog, MAKING FAMILY DINNER HOUR POSSIBLE ( and I would LOVE for you to be a guest author. What you do fits so perfectly with our message!
3) I am also co-editor of a new cooking magazine coming out the first of May (it'll be international, in hard copy and electronic), called Cook'n. We would LOVE to do an article on natural yeast baking and feature you and your recipes.
PLEASE get back to me on these things asap? My email is, or
Thanks so much, and I can hardly wait to hear from you!

Unknown said...

i tried just what you said to make yeast and nothing but one raison raised to the top of the concoction. so is that a yeast to use? or should i start again? i need to learn how that is a fact. have a great day.

Unknown said...

Great blog! We are starting our own yeast water today using this method and have shared about it on our blog. Thanks for the information:)

uptowner said...

who cares about bread what about wine/beer yeast

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adam said...

how much yeast water do I use to replace a yeast packet?

wwwatch said...

ditto what adam says

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Unknown said...

Is the water softened afterwards? I've heard lots of information about hard water on This Website and it says that water can be unsafe and cause health problems if it has not been softened.

lunatica said...

To everyone asking about equivalents to commercial dry yeast, the answer is that there isn't any. There is no way to say with confidence that 2 tbsp of YW is equal to so much dry yeast.
The biggest problem is that YW (yeast water) isn't consistent in its yeast content. Some waters will be "stronger" than others, even if you make it with the exact recipe every time.
Now, I'm not an expert but I've been baking with sourdough for a while now and have read SO much over the last 10 years that I've gone realize that ANY "natural" leavener is going to be a trial and error sort of thing. It's why commercial yeast was created. Professional bakers needed to be able to accurately predict the results of their doughs, make bread faster and be able to consistently get a rise from their dough. You can't do any of that with sourdough or any other kind of natural process.
Like medicine, when you use "natural" ingredients to make a tincture, for example, you don't always know how strong it' active molecules are going to be because the plants used will have different compositions based on so many variables. That's why with tablets or whatever medicine you get from a pharmacy, they can tell you, "These are 500mg of penicillin", while no one can say the same from the original formulation.
It's the nature of the beast.
My suggestion is to follow a couple of Mr. Wao's recipes with his method of creating the pre-ferment (I believe his suggestion is to use 80g of YW to 100g of bottled or filtered water) and see how well your yeast water behaves in the times he suggests.
What I've found is that times are guidelines. If something isn't happening by a given timeframe, go back and ask what could have gone wrong. If you see LOTS of activity BEFORE the times given, then, congratulations!, you've created a VERY strong solution!
I hope my bit of pedantic discourse helps.
Bake on!

Muhammad Ahsan Taqveem said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jamish said...
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