The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts


AnyAnnie's picture

100% Sourdough Rye not rising much, distressingly gummy.

September 10, 2012 - 1:29pm -- AnyAnnie

(An introduction before my plea for advice---I've been coming to The Fresh Loaf to learn from your helpfulness for almost six years now---and every one, from the first pita to the recentest baguettes ciabatta, has come out lovely to eat and lovely to learn from. After a recent trip north, I decided I wanted to learn to make 100% sourdough rye, and it's the first thing I've been stuck enough on to feel like I need to ask for help.)

arguros's picture

Baguette dough, final bread texture

February 4, 2012 - 2:06am -- arguros


This is my first post in this forum. I have been following it silently for quite a while and I was impressed with the quality of bread other forum members post here. I also recently bough a Kenwood Major KM020 and I wanted to try it out with a baguette dough.

While I have been living in Dublin for more than 10 years, I am originally from Italy, where there is a long artisan bread tradition, which means I am kind of found of good bread.

I followed the Hamelmann baguette with poolish recipe , with a final round shape

rm1211's picture

Rubbery bread texture

June 30, 2011 - 9:42am -- rm1211


I have been experimetning with sourdough for a wee while now and I feel I'm doing quite well.

I can now bake a bread that rises and has the crisp crust I'm looking for, it has a nice open crumb and good flavour.

However, the texture leaves something to be desired. I'm not sure how to describe it - it's slightly rubbery or spongy. Not unpleasant, but not quite right. The loaf is airy enough.

I've been experimenting with some factors and just wondered if anyone could point me in the right direction?

sustainthebaker's picture

Crunchy Bits in my Challah

December 20, 2010 - 12:34pm -- sustainthebaker

I recently made a loaf of Challah for my family. It was my first Challah and it came out with great flavor. It was a six-braided loaf which I did not let proof long enough, which lead to a bit more oven spring than you'd want from a Challah. The texture was light and fluffy, with a bit of creaminess to it. However, at the end of most bites there would be a gritty crunch to the bread. Any ideas?

I have two thoughts:

1.  I used honey, which had crsyallized. I did however, warm the honey back up to a liquid state before adding to the dough.

Nickisafoodie's picture

Sourdough Rye with Seeds – cast iron bake

First, thanks to Eric Hanner for this post providing inspiration to explore covered cast iron cooking recently:  This is my second bake with cast iron and I like the results!  Flavor and texture were awesome!

I already owned a 5 qt Wagner Dutch oven with a glass lid that has been in the family as long as I can remember.  The diameter is the same as the 3 qt. Lodge combi cooker - the higher capacity of the Wagner being due to taller height.  So I had vessels that would allow two similar sized loaves to be baked at once- albeit with one having glass and one having cast iron cover.  Both loaves came out identical



Sourdough Rye Recipe for two loaves (2,066gr or 2.3 lbs prior to baking)

Overall Formula:

60% bread flour (697gr)

25% fresh ground whole wheat (293gr)

10% fresh ground whole rye (114gr)

5% Oat bran (I tend to add to all of my breads for health reasons - 58gr)

23 grams sea salt

20 gr molasses (approx 2 tbs)

10 gr malted wheat powder (approx 2 tbs) – sprouted, dried and ground into flour (malted barley would substitute)

40 gr mixed seeds: Flax, charnushka/black caraway, sesame, poppy seeds (approx 4 tbs)

72% hydration ratio: 834gr water including starter build up.


Build Stages:

1.      Stage 1 - build rye starter (100% hydration) to 228 grams (11% of recipe).  This uses all of the rye flour.

2.      Stage 2 – add 293gr of whole wheat, 58gr oat bran, 38 gr white bread flour, all of the seeds, 389gr water.  This approximates 39% of the total formula.  When combined with Stage 1 equates to 50% of the total recipe.  Let proof 8 hours at 78° (oven off light on gets works well).

3.      6pm: incorporate remaining ingredients other than salt.  40 minute autolyse.

4.      Add salt, mix 6 minutes on low speed.

5.      Stretch and fold 3 times at 45 minute intervals.  Keep at 78° between folds.

6.      10:00 pm: Preshape loaves, rest 25 minutes, shape into final loaf and place in floured banneton (actually: $1.50 colander from the dollar store lined with a microfiber dinner napkin and lightly dusted with flour- micro fiber wicks away moisture and releases fine with modest dusting)

7.      Place in plastic bag, leave overnight in refrigerator.

8.      Preheat oven 1 hour at 500° - include Dutch ovens and lids

9.      Plop dough into hot vessels, spray with water, score, and cover.  In they go.

10.  Reduce heat to 450° after 5 minutes

11.  Remove cover after 30 minutes

12.  Baked another 5 or so minutes until internal temp is 195°.  Shut oven until internal bread temp was 202°. 

Note: While the loaves came out nice, the crust is not rock hard as Eric was striving for and as was pointed out in his post/link above.   While my crusts were not rock hard after a 30 minute cover, I am still happy with the outcome.  

Perhaps next time I will leave the temp higher and in the oven longer to see what impact that has on the crust. And not spray dough after putting into Dutch ovens?  Or perhaps shut the oven sooner and leave until 210° or so internal?  Any suggestions on that elusive crust would be appreciated!

GregS's picture

How do I get a shiny bubbly outer crust?

October 20, 2010 - 10:04pm -- GregS

I'm reasonably happy with the interiors of my recent sourdough boules, but the exteriors are depressing. They are brown to dark brown, flat, dull and smooth. No golden glow, no little bubbles under the surface. Looking at the photos on TFL makes me afraid to even photograph mine! What variables contribute to an attractive crust on a white flour, French-type boule, batard or baguette?

Thanks, as always


GregS's picture

Stuck to the Wall

September 24, 2010 - 6:02pm -- GregS

I'm a bit embarrassed to post this, but there are no fellow artisans within reasonable reach, so here goes.

I'm trying to build up a 60% sourdough starter based on Maggie Glezer's book. It is supposed to be 10% old starter, 60% water and 100% flour. The rising is coming along ok, but the tackiness of the risen active starter exceeds the finest library paste! It sticks to the jar, my hands, the utensils, and anything else it contacts, with a deadly tenacity.


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