I recently tried to make Monkey Bread, but my dough did not rise. I don’t think it rose at all, so I went in search of answers. Apparently, working with active yeast is a bit tricky.
- You have to wake up the yeast – mixing with warm fluid between 105 and 115 degrees F. Too hot will kill the yeast and too cold with not wake it up. So I need to get a candy thermometer. When the warm fluid is mixed with the yeast, we can tell it’s active when the mixture creates a foam at the top. It’s also good to give the yeast a little sugar to start eating.
- Do not add salt directly into the yeast mixture. It will kill the yeast.
- Then you will need a warm place for the bread to rise. Depending on your oven, warming it to 200 degrees F and then turning off will be sufficient. If you have an inefficient oven, try adding a pan of boiling water to the oven while it’s warming up. This water will help the oven stay warm, especially in winter. As a last resort in winter, you might be able to keep the dough near a heating unit, but put a damp towel over the bowl so the dough does not dry out.
I also saw some discussion on the difficulty of getting dough with wheat flour to rise, but have not investigated that problem.