October 16 2012
You'll never be able to use all that!
Walking around Metro with Mme Sweet Pea just before the summer holidays, I got far too carried away. You see, Metro is the catering supply store that provides the trade with the kind of stuff my dreams are made of. Blocks of Emmental cheese as big as your face, 5 and 10 litre tubs of ice cream, Philadelphia cheese, Oreo biscuits, Caramel biscuits, and that's before we even get into all the butter and cream.
My biggest moment of weakness however was for a pack of 5 x 500g blocks of fresh yeast.
To put this into context, for one 500g loaf of bread, you would typically use 15g of yeast. By this calculation, I had enough yeast to open a boulangerie.
Mme Sweet Pea tried to reason with me but it was too late. My heart was set on this funky-smelling fungus and I wasn't hearing any of it.
It was only once I got home that I realised that I may have gone somewhat overboard. Nevertheless, the "you'll never use all of that" was still ringing in my ears and had awakened my (rather formidable) stubborn-streak.
I was detemined to use it. All of it. And so, I set to. Basic stand-bys such as fruit bread, granary bread, white bloomers were coming thick and fast, while giving me time to thumb the recipe books for experiments like this pear and roquefort foccacia bread. Then for one solid week, I made nothing but pizza.... and in doing so, turned that enormous quantity of yeast into body weight!
I decided to take a break. I had used three and a half blocks but it was becoming too much. For my arteries, my stomach, and for my poor housemate.
A week later, in a sudden moment of clarity, I realised the calling of the remaining yeast: beer! Amen.