The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts


cranbo's picture

dough hydration...for pasta?

June 12, 2011 - 12:47pm -- cranbo

I know, a bit unrelated to baking but...I'm doing some research about pasta dough, and was wondering what the hydration of pasta dough should be. The recipe I've used in the past is one from Jamie Oliver, which is 1 egg per 100g of flour is pulsed in a food processor until it comes together in a breadcrumb texture. 

Assuming 1 large egg is ~75% hydration, and 1 large egg weighs about 57g, there should be about 42g of water available from the egg. This makes the pasta dough hydration (according to the formula) around 42%. Does this seem correct?

goose13's picture

Hydration adjustment in recipe

June 5, 2011 - 1:29pm -- goose13

I recently started a 60% hydration starter due to some problems I have been having with my 100%. It looks like it's coming along great but I had a question regarding recipe adjustments, and I couldn't get a definitive answer using the search. I did find a spreadsheet however, but it's a bit daunting at the moment, and I haven't quite wrapped my head around it yet.

rhaazz's picture

80% hydration = pancake batter

March 10, 2011 - 11:00am -- rhaazz

I was getting burnt, no-bounce sourdough loaves and thought this problem might be fixable with higher hydration. 

So I mixed an 80% hydration sourdough.  It  was so soupy that despite several stretch and folds, it remained the consistency of pancake batter.  I could not shape it at all.  I literally had to pour it into a loaf pan.

What am I doing wrong?  I used 400 g flour (including the flour in the starter) and 320 g water (including the water in the starter).  That results in a dough that is 80% water by weight.  Am I not using correct baker's math?

davidg618's picture

I routinely make baguettes with a straight dough at 70% hydration, and an overnight ferment at 55°F.  Curious, in yesterday's mix I reduced the hydration to 65%, all other ingredients (KA AP flour and sea salt) and processes were the same: DDT set to 55°F with ice water, and the dough chilled during autolyse, between S&Fs and overnight retarding for 15 hours. I was motivated to try a lower hydration based on a smattering of comments scattered in various TFL threads that argue open crumb isn't only about hydration. This dough, developed an extraordinary strength--I did the 3rd S&F only because I  always do three, it didn't need doing. The crumb is nearly as open as I experience in the 70% dough. However, the dough seemed to have less than the usual elasticity; note the broken surface between the scorings. I detected no apparent difference in flavor.

David G

cranbo's picture

So I've been baking breads for some years now and experimenting with various recipes. 

Today I've been working on these English Muffins as well as my version of Theresa Greenway's Griffin's Bread.

The versions I'm making are 62% and 68% hydrations respectively. 

Most of the time I use a KA mixer with C-hook to knead.

Both doughs clear the sides of the bowl reasonably well, but neither of these totally clear the bottom of the bowl. I ran them both for maybe 1 minute at KA speed 2 to combine, then about 3-4 minutes at speed 3. 

In the case of the muffins (which use about 70% preferment), there was about a 2.5" diameter circle at the bottom, and I added some additional flour (about 10g) and it shrank to about 2". 

In the case of the sourdough (which uses about 82% preferment), it stuck to a large circle at bowl bottom, probably 5-6" around. I had to add probably 30g of flour to make it clear the sides better, leaving about a 2-2.5" diameter circle at the bottom of the bowl. 

My questions are about hydration and mixing to clear the bowl: 


  1. Am I correct to assume that all 62% and above hydration flours will never totally clear the bottom of the bowl? 

  2. What hydration typically will clear the bowl bottom? 

If I was more accurate with my starter maintenance, I'm sure this would be less of an issue (I think my preferment hydration varies anywhere from 60-85%, because I eyeball it). I just want to get a better feel for the behavior of hydration and my mixing machine, so that I can make adjustments as necessary. At least I've learned not to add more flour to sticky ryes, I've ended up with quite a few bricks over the years. 


Scott Grocer's picture

Hydration: Effect of potatoes?

February 22, 2011 - 5:25pm -- Scott Grocer

Does anybody have a good rule of thumb for calculating the hydration of a dough when it includes plain, cooked and mashed potato?

According to the USDA: Potatoes, baked, flesh, without salt (100 grams) contain on average 75.42 grams of water. That sounds right I guess, but how much of that moisture is available to the dough, and how should I adjust hydration in relation to potato content?


jowilchek's picture

hydration, kneading or stretch and fold

December 27, 2010 - 8:49pm -- jowilchek

when working with a high hydration dough it is hard for me to knead...

the dough is wet and sticky, should I oil up my hands? (don't want to add flour that will alter hydration)

should I not knead high hydration dough? and always do stretch and fold?

Is there a cut off % level for kneading/stretch and fold (like 50% or under hydration knead and over 50% hydration stretch and fold? If no rule of thumb applies can you use either for all types of dough?

PeterPiper's picture

Pillow ciabatta

October 20, 2010 - 8:58am -- PeterPiper

I've been playing around with the no-knead ciabatta recipe for a while, and am finding a major problem:  my ciabatta comes out with one giant air pocket.  Last night I made three loaves all from the same 100% hydration recipe.  With the first I stirred the 18-hour proofed batter then poured out one loaf and put it right in the oven.  Here's how that one came out.


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