The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

shelf life

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Chris downunder's picture

Shelf Life

August 4, 2011 - 4:32pm -- Chris downunder
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I am new to baking and have had some successes (I think anyway) with my breads, basic white loaf, wholemeal with some linseed and pumpkin seed loafs, also the cinnamon and oat meal loaf from this website, but I find that the bread does not keep for very long, and dries out , becoming stale and only really good for toasting after as little as 12 hours after baking.

Is there something I can do to prolong the shelf life, either in my process, or can I add something?

I'd be grateful for any insight.

Thanks. Chris

Bohh's picture

Expiration Dates...what do they really mean?

September 19, 2010 - 1:53pm -- Bohh
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Hello,

As a new baker I have a question for you all. As we know, lots of ingredients have "Best if used by dates" on them. Everything from meat, to eggs, to peanut butter, to syrup. Anyway, I've been looking online to figure out how long these ingredients will really last. For example, a source I found said you can store butter for 1-3 months.

Stephanie Brim's picture

Observations on whole grain breads

January 28, 2010 - 3:37pm -- Stephanie Brim
Forums: 

I just wanted to add a couple of observations about the 100% whole wheat sandwich breads I've been making lately.


First off, the epoxy method really does work. I've done it now by hand and by mixer and it really isn't that hard. I really like it. It seems to give the whole bread a better texture, and I'm getting whole grain breads that are soft enough for even my toddler to like it for PB&J sandwiches. And that's something.

sharonk's picture
sharonk

I tried one of my newest gluten free recipes and came up with a very tasty bread. It had a nice crumb, a nice rise and a nice crust. When I travel I always bring my own bread. I was getting ready to travel to a family event. I sliced up one loaf and packed it in my suitcase. To be sure I would have enough bread I also took the loaf I had previously sliced and frozen the week before. When I got to my hotel room I unpacked the still slightly frozen bread, leaving it to thaw in the open air. Meanwhile, I happily ate the fresh slices as I moved through the weekend’s events. I had forgotten about the thawing slices in the open air until I began packing and saw them. Being unsure they were still good but unwilling to dump them, I repacked them and brought them home. When I got home I toasted up a piece and Wow! it was still fantastic! There were a few pieces left so I wrapped them in a cloth and set them on the counter to see how many more days they would still taste good. They were still excellent even 2-3 days later. So this was a previously frozen bread that had thawed in the stuffy air of a hotel room, inadvertently left in that same stuffy air for 3 days, repacked and traveled a total of 700 miles. The bread just would not get stale, old, or gross!


 


For a gluten free bread to be treated this way and still taste so good is very, very unusual. Most people who must eat gluten free bread, whether they bake their own or buy it fresh, eat it fresh for one day and put the rest in the freezer because it dries out so quickly. My gluten free sourdough bread stays fresh on the counter for 5 days wrapped in a cloth, sitting in an open plastic container. It keeps 10 days in the fridge if it hasn’t been eaten up by then. It also freezes, thaws and toasts up beautifully. I have always been proud of the long shelf life of this palatable bread.


 


The packed, frozen, thawed, repacked, retoasted loaf that was inadvertently ignored in the hotel room was an experimental loaf. I used one of my standard recipes and added 2 tablespoons of chia seed gel to it. Recently I baked another loaf using this same recipe, with chia added, and tested the limits of its shelf life. It lasted 10 days! stored on the counter, in a cloth, in an open plastic container. By day 8 it lost a little of its bounce but gained a great crispiness in the toaster.


 


Chia seed is a wonderful addition to baked products. Adding 2 tablespoons of chia seed gel to baking products will extend the freshness and shelf life. The chia seeds attract moisture which is retained in the baking product.


 


To make chia seed gel, take 2 tablespoons of chia seed and mix it into 8 ounces of water.


 


Stir with a whisk or fork every 5-10 minutes for a half hour.


 


It is suggested to let the chia seed gel sit for 12 hours before using.


 


It keeps for 2 weeks in the fridge.

Steve H's picture

Bread Shelf Life

June 8, 2009 - 6:54pm -- Steve H
Forums: 

So, my bread is drying out pretty quickly, which makes me sad.  As a single person with only one girlfriend, we can only eat so much at once, and I am running our of houses for housewarming gifts.  What's the best way to keep bread from getting stale?

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