The difference between ‘nutritional’ and ‘active dry’ yeast.

These are not interchangeable Ingredients. Both say ‘yeast’ and that’s about as close as they get to sharing a similarity. Nutritional yeast is a deactivated yeast that is use, by us vegans, to thicken sauces and actually just mimics the flavor of parmesan cheese also has a nutty flavour. Active dry yeast is an activated yeast, used in breads to make them rise. You can use ‘nutritional yeast’ to give that additional boost to your nutrition. 

I don’t recommend working with active dry yeast. Though some amounts of it are used by many bakers, I still prefer using a starter made with water and flour for my breads, and don’t use them in my baking as well. It will feed off the yeast/bad bacteria in your gut and cause issues; specially for those with weakened digestion.

Nutritional Yeast benefits 

  1. Vegans and vegetarians can enhance their B12 levels (which only comes from anumal protein); use an unfortified version of it.
  2. A great source of protein (Vegans/Vegetarians). Contains all the nine amino acids that one needs from food.
  3. Has many trace minerals (zinc, manganese, molybdenum and zinc)
  4. Has the group of B vitamins (tough fortified versions may have higher amounts of it)

How can you use nutritional yeast?

  1. Thicken your sauce and soup with it, and get a cheesy flavour
  2. Sprinkle over pasta to get a cheesiness (especially if you are a vegan like me)
  3. Use to add an ‘umami’ flavour to your dishes (see what ‘umami’ means below)
  4. Add to vegetables that will get baked
  5. Add to baked beans
  6. Use on scrambled eggs or tofu
  7. Add to a salad
  8. Add to baked or steamed greens – especially kale

UMAMI – what does it mean?

Your taste buds are designed to handle these tastes: sweet, salty, bitter, sour. UMAMI is the mysterious fifth taste. A Japanese chemist and food lover Kikunae Ikeda described this taste as Umami. It happens when proteins are completely broken down of which one molecule called L-glutamate is responsible for the Umami taste. When L-glutamate binds to certain receptors of the tongue, this taste is experienced. Literally translates it means ‘pleasant, savoury taste.’

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