The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

By George...or Jim...Or SourDoLady...I think I've done it.

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sadears's picture
sadears

By George...or Jim...Or SourDoLady...I think I've done it.

I just put my sourdough into the oven (it's off, but I left the light on) for it's first rise.  Jim, I still can't do your slap and fold.  I have issues with the percentages, no matter how many spreadsheets I look at.  I don't think I kneaded quite enough, but it's closing in on 11 p.m. mountain time.  I'm tired.  So, I'll let it rise, and in the morning I'll punch it down, shap it/them (plan to make two loaves), let them rise, then bake them.

 

Wish me luck ;-D

 

Steph

SourdoLady's picture
SourdoLady

Steph, I wouldn't leave your dough in the oven with the light on all night. Leave it at room temp--just on the counter. I think the oven light will keep it too warm. You don't want to over-rise the dough. A cool rise is better at this stage.

sadears's picture
sadears

SourdoLady,

Too late.  It may have risen too much, and it didn't hold the finger test well.  I took it out this morning and kneaded it more.  Seemed too wet, sticking to my fingers like crazy.  Mmm.  Just took it out of the oven as you suggested for the second rise. 

Steph

jm_chng's picture
jm_chng

Hi Steph, I won't tell you at what temp you should be proofing because that depends on a, how much starter you have used and then b, what you want your bread to taste like. The lactobacilli and the yeast peak at different temperatures. Also different strains of lactobacilli will peak at different temps to each other. In general higher temps towards the late 20's in C will favour more the lactobacilli. So if you want a sour bread ferment at higher temps. Some say they get more sour when they ferment for longer and so conclude that if they ferment in the fridge the longer time will mean more sour. It doesn't work like that. 

I would never 'punch down' sourdough though. You want to treat it gently. You want to keep the air. If you were using yeast and you wanted to extend the fermentation time then you can be more aggressive with it. You don't want this with sourdough. Take one of my recipes and follow it as closely as you can. Then, all respect to others right to me off list and ask if you don't understand something or if you need more advice. Since we have made a connection use it to your advantage. You've seen my bread if you aspire to bake that bread then ask me as much as you like. Don't worry about spreadsheets. Different flours can work differently. Pick my brains about how it should look and feel. I'll send you pix and more vids if you like. But write off list. The advice I will give is for you. Different people do things differently. And to make things more complicated few people qualify their advice well enough for you to put the advice to good use. I shorthand all the time too so if someone were to read half of the thread I could do more harm than good. Or if you like ask Sourdough lady to be your helper. But as you see both she and I have different views so to listen to both of us will be confusing. 
Jim

sadears's picture
sadears

Interesting, S. John Ross says to punch it down.  Well, I divided the dough and they sort of look like baguettes.  They're sitting in the oven for the last rise.  I'm not too optimistic about this attempt, but we'll see.  Now that I know how to post pictures, I'll snap a couple when they're done.

 

Steph

JMonkey's picture
JMonkey

Actually, it just depends on what kind of bread you're making. S. John doesn't try to make what he calls "bakery bread." If you're making sandwich bread, punching down should work just fine to degass the dough, but if you're going for a big, open crumb with lots of irregularly sized holes, then you'll want to keep as much gas in the dough as possible when you shape the loaf.

 

For sandwich bread, degassing helps to make a more uniform crumb, but even then, I find I get a bigger loaf if I degass gently, usually by folding the dough. 

sadears's picture
sadears

JMonkey,

 

S. John was making sourdough.  Anyway, they're in the oven now.  Didn't seem to rise anymore.

 

I'm making a spreadsheet of info since after awhile, I forget where I found stuff on this website.  Hope that'll help me keep things organized ;-(  Don't hold your breath.

 

Steph

JMonkey's picture
JMonkey

Yes, I know he made sourdough -- but sourdough is  essentially just a leavening. A leavening that bestows bread with its own flavor, to be sure, but you can make any bread you like with sourdough starter: hearth bread, pizza, baguettes, sandwich bread, waffles, muffin, cinnamon bread ....

 

The bread I make most often, for instance, is whole wheat sourdough sandwich bread. For that bread, I degass the dough -- gently, but almost completely, because I want a fairly fine crumb.

 

When I'm making a San Francisco-style hearth bread, on the other hand, and want an open crumb with big, honking holes, I try to keep as much of the gas from the initial rise as I can. It just depends on what you want to make. 

sadears's picture
sadears

JMonkey,

 

Yes, I understand the concept of the holes now.  I just found it interesting that he says to punch it down, but I thought one of the attractions of sourdough, besides the taste, was the texture, like all the nooks and crannies in an English muffin.

 

Steph

JMonkey's picture
JMonkey

I think you're right, Steph -- when most people think sourdough, they think of the hearth bread they get in San Francisco, which usually has big holes. I like it that way, too. But I like it lots of other ways as well. :-)

T4tigger's picture
T4tigger

<smacking myself in the head>   I've made your whole wheat bread several times and have been berating myself on why I wasn't getting a large, open crumb........now I know why!  

thanks for the clarification about folding vs gentle handling!! 

sadears's picture
sadears

I hadn't realized that kneading so much I'd be shooting myself in the foot.  I'm a quick learner in some ways, but in others, I'm slow on the up-take.  I get it now.

 

Steph