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Publié par escoffier sandrine


Two types of levure in France : levure chimique that litterally means « chemical yeast », and levure de boulanger, which is fresh yeast.


1. Levure chimique 

How to use it ?

Mainly for cakes and pastries. Easy to use : just add the levure to the batter, stir and that's it.


Where to find it ?

Levure chimique comes in a small plactic pakage with 5 paper bags of levure (because once opened you must use it within a few days).

Each bag contains the amount necessary for 500 g of flour. Usually, it's close to the
sugar (suvre) and flour (farine). Sometimes it's close to the nuts, almonds, birthday candles ...



  How to store it ?

Up to several months before you open the bag. Once opened, you can keep it for a few days, avoid humidity.



Sometimes you can buy « farine à gâteaux », which means that the « levure » is already combined with the flour.

Where to find it ?

With the flour, close to the sugar.

But you can also buy it here !

See also bicarbonate



2. Levure de boulanger : fresh yeast

Also : "levure traditionnelle", "levure à l'ancienne". This "levure traditionnelle" is used to make "levain". So if you buy a "pain au levain" it's a traditional bread.


How to use it ?

Don't be afraid of the smell. It's not a very nice smell but it's normal.

This yeast has been used for a long time to make bread. It's fresh and comes in little compressed squares.

Usually you don't need the whole square for one bread recipe, just follow the directions of the recipe. Put one or two tablespoon(s) of hot (but not boiling) water or milk in a cup. Add the amount of levure you need and slowly mix. Let it sit for 15 minutes and then add it to the other ingredients.



One more thing : this levure de boulanger if not for every kind of cake. We usually use it for dough or brioche. It's specified on the recipe. Anyway, if you want to try it for a chocolate cake for example, it's ok, just remember this levure has a stronger taste.




Where to find it in a supermarket ?

Unlike « levure chimique », « levure de boulanger » is in square individual package, usually wrapped in aluminum foil (it looks like a tiny « plaquette de beurre »).

As it's fresh, you won't find it with the levure chimique but in the bakery department, if the supermarket bakes its own bread. If the supermarket only sells bread, they won't have any.


Elsewhere : if there is a boulangerie / bakery close to your home, just go there, they sell yeast.
Just smile and ask « bonjour, je voudrais de la levure de boulanger »!


How to store it ?

Only in the fridge for no more than one week, see the DLCO.


If you are interested in France & French culture, enjoy this virtual visit of 10 museums, castles and monuments of France. It's a free guide, it's just for you!

Back to the article "if I want to make a cake"




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