Kids, you all love to eat bread or other bakery products. But have you ever thought about how they are made? There is an organism that helps prepare these bakery products. The organism is yeast. Yeast is a single-celled (made up of only one cell) organism. It reproduces asexually, which means it can reproduce by a single parent, and no gametes are involved. For many years yeast has been used for baking and brewing purposes.
Till now, 1500 species of yeast have been identified. It is considered in the family of fungi, like mushrooms. In this article, we will learn the uses of yeast; yeast uses in food and more about what is yeast.
Structure of Yeast
What is Yeast?
Yeast is a microorganism which is single-celled and eukaryotic. They are classified as a member of the fungus kingdom. Yeast is particularly efficient in fermentation. Some of them are harmful to humans. Some yeasts are grown to use in the food industry, and others grow naturally. Yeast can grow easily in the presence of sugar. Yeasts have various uses. It is useful in the production of many different products. Some of the common uses are:
Use of Yeast in Alcoholic Products
Uses of Yeast
Following are some important uses of yeast:
Bread: It is the most common use of yeast. Yeasts react with oxygen and help the bread to rise. Jewish people were using yeast to make flatbread.
Alcoholic Drinks: Yeasts are used to ferment the mixture to make it alcoholic. Yeasts are useful in making ale, lager, spirits, and wine.
Non-alcoholic Drinks: Yeasts add flavours to Root beers and other soft drinks. The use of a fermentation process does this. The fermentation process is stopped before the drink becomes alcoholic.
Research: Because of their cellular makeup, yeasts are useful in various scientific research related to genetics.
Biofuel: Yeasts are used in the preparation of biofuels. As we know, yeast can turn sugar into ethanol; hence this process is used to prepare biofuels that are utilised as diesel substitutes in vehicles.
Yeast Uses in Food
Yeasts are used to produce different food items. The following are the yeast used in food:
Yeasts in Fermented Food and Beverages: Yeasts are beneficial microorganisms for producing fermented foods and beverages. Yeasts are used here to make cheese, bread, sourdoughs, fermented meats, and fermented vegetable products.
Yeasts in Dairy Products: Yeasts are used for the preparation of various dairy products. They must add flavour and texture to fermented milk like kefir and koumiss. It is also useful in ripening cheese.
Yeasts in Fermented Meat Products: Yeasts are used in limited quantities in fermented meat products. They are used for adding colours and flavours to the meat.
Yeasts in the Fermentation of ereal Products: Yeasts are used in the fermentation of cereal products to improve their life and nutritional value compared to raw products. The protein quantity is large in fermented products.
Yeast in Bread Dough
Nutritional Yeast Uses
Nutritional yeast is also known as nooch. It is a popular product that is used in vegan cooking. It is a species of yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. It is of two types: fortified(which contains synthetic vitamins) and unfortified(which does not contain any type of added vitamins).
The uses of nutritional yeasts are the following:
Used in the seasoning of popcorn, pasta, salad, etc.
Used as an umami flavour in soups or chilli.
Used as a savoury, cheesy flavour in vegan sauces.
Used as a thickener for soups and sauces.
Used as a pet food additive.
Used as an ingredient in smoothies.
In this article, we learned that yeasts are single-celled microorganisms that are very useful for human beings. Yeasts are useful in preparing bread, alcoholic products, non-alcoholic products, and biofuels. It is also too beneficial for scientists for genetic studies and research. It is used for flavouring vegan sauces. Yeasts are used in fermented food and beverages, dairy products, fermented meat products, and fermentation of cereal products.
Thus, we discussed how yeast is used in the production of various food and beverage industries, what is yeast, the yeast used in the food and what nutritional yeast uses.