The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Consistency help??

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Foster Glen's picture
Foster Glen

Consistency help??

I am a middle school teacher and I have been baking with my students for the last 2 months. We bake on average about 16 loaves twice a week for a total of 32 loaves a week. We are using a modified version of the "Artisan Bread" in 5 minutes recipe (we use a much higher hydration (78%) to get a nicer crumb). The issue is this, the first two bakes (we can do 4 at a time in combo-cookers) are good with a nice oven spring. After that things start to get flatter and flatter. The last two bakes are definitely substandard. Each of the loaves gets the same amount of fermentation, bench rest, and time in the bannetons. I am perplexed why this might be the case. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

Just putting out a flag  :)  

The flatter is caused by fermentation, could try reducing the yeast just a little bit or (!) if using rapid yeast, switch to regular instant yeast.

FueledByCoffee's picture
FueledByCoffee

You say everything gets the same amount of time?  Perhaps your issue is that you need to pay less attention to times but rather to your dough and your environment.  I imagine at the beginning of the dough make up your ovens are off and the room is cooler than when your ovens are going.  Also, are you checking your dough temperatures?  Is there variation in this?  5-10 degree change of room temperature or dough temperature can be the difference between perfectly proofed and sliding towards over fermented. 

Dan001's picture
Dan001

Your first 2 bread are going in the oven when perfectly ready.... the rest of them are probably overproof.

When the first 2 goes in the oven, move all other rising in a very cold fridge or even a freezer for 15 minutes to stop the fermentation and when its their turn, simply bake them.

However you will need a thermometer to make sure that your internal temperature is always 210 F. The once coming from the fridge or even will have to bake for longer.

 

Good luck and have fun

rcoplen's picture
rcoplen

It would seem my dear that while the first batch is baking the second batch continues to ferment. So it would seem you put the first batch in to bake in perfect time but failed to account for furter fermentation. So it would seem the second batch was just beginning to overproof! Try baking first batch about 20 min early(slightly underproof )but good oven spring! Second batch will be at it's peak!

rcoplen's picture
rcoplen

Sorry Foster, I called you "dear!" Didn't look at who I was talking to.

Foster Glen's picture
Foster Glen

Thanks for all your help! I changed two things and it seems that I may have remedied the problem. First some of the bakers were manhandling some of the later loaves. When shaping they were practically beating up the dough and pressing out much of the gas. The other issue, which I think was the real deal, was that after the loaves were uncovered the lids sat out and cooled down while the loaves finished in the oven. I decided that after the loaves came out and before the next bake went in, was to put the covers back on for 10 minutes to let the heat build up again. Seems to have worked...do either of these sound like they make sense for later flat loaves???

Thanks again...Glen