The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

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Pop N Fresh's picture
Pop N Fresh

Bill Yosses (White House Pastry Chef) at Harvard University

To those of you who enjoy the science of things, these series of food science videos on Harvard's YouTube site are GREAT!

 Most are well over an hour, but well worth it!!  Enjoy


milofarm's picture

Problems with bread using 100% sprouted flour

Hi. I have been sprouting and drying my own wheat and grinding it for flour to use in my bread. I have always used a whole wheat bread recipe and it has always worked for me.

However, I wanted to try to make the same bread but instead using sprouted flour. I first soak the grain for 8 - 12 hours. Then I drain it and let it sprout for 24 -36 hrs. Then I dehydrate it around 115F until it is as dry as unsprouted wheat. I then grind the grain.

So, when I substitute the whole wheat flour to sprouted flour without changing anything, it rises well as usual. <b>The problem is that when I take it out of the oven as usual, the bread sinks imediatly. When I open the bread it is pure dough on the inside even after baking. I even tried baking it longer until the crust was very dark and hard, but still the inside was dough.</b>

My question is, does sprouting the grain change the baking properties of it. And if so, what should I change for it to work? Or am I doing anything else wrong?

Thank You for the help,


dwfender's picture

Heavy Topped Pizzas

I use the pizza recipe from BBA. The dough itself is excellent, easy to work with and pretty solid flavor. The other day however, I ran into some problems.


I made a buffalo chicken pizza. Obviously, this is a topping with a good deal of weight and moisture. I tried to spread the crust as thin as possible in hopes of getting a crunch out of it. It backfired and all I got was a crust that couldn't hold the weight of the toppings. So, I remade the dough recipe and tried it again, leaving the dough a little thicker and allowing it to cook slightly longer and I replace the heavy toppings with a simple tomato sauce and mozzarella. When the pizza came out of the oven it looked great. Nice dark bubbles on the crust, crisp and sturdy. I put it down on my wooden cutting board to cut it and before I knew it the center of the pie was already soggy. I cut it and ate it and I noticed that the flavor of the crust was pretty good but the texture wasn't. It was too chewy although it did have a nice crunch. 

So, to recap...My problems are, the center of the pie won't keep the crunch, or is too soggy, and the crust is slightly over chewy. 


My next try, I'm going to up my dough weight from 6 ounces to 9 ounces and stretch it to the same size. Hoping the extra dough will sit in the center and give it some structure. 


I've tried this dough with and without any fat in the recipe. I tend to leave it out for more crunch but haven't seen a difference in the way it changes the structure. Hoping someone might be able to shed some light on what I'm doing wrong. 

kvolluz's picture

Problems with Jim Lahey No Knead Methods - Poor First Rise, Too Dense, Etc.

Hello, everyone.  I am new to baking as a result of seeking new uses for my Lodge dutch oven.  Of course, I discovered Jim's book in that process.  I've tried the basic white bread on several occasions and am not having any success to my great embarrassment and frustration.  My first rise just isn't getting to the size as described in the book.  I've checked my flour and it has the appropriate protein content.  I've changed my yeast to a new jar in order to make sure that it is fresh. I use a food scale in order to get the portions correct.  I use a thermometer in order to make sure that the water is the correct temperature.  I've even changed from using a metal mixing bowl to a plastic one in order to make sure that the dough is not too cool during the first rise.  All of this to no avail.  While I do get a rise, stopping at various times between 12-18 hours, it never doubles in size.  For my second rise, I place the dough in my warming drawer and that doesn't seem to help.  My breads barely get over 2 inches tall when completed (measured at the widest point).  And, of course, the bread is a quite dense, chewy, and simply not a pleasure to eat.  Since I've read so many great reviews of Jim's book and the no knead process generally, I know that I must be doing something wrong but am now at a loss as to what to do differently.  Does anyone have any ideas, suggestions, or advice (other than to buy my bread at the grocery store!!)?  Should I put the dough into the warming drawer for the first rise as well?  Of course, that's not in Jim's book but I really do not know what else to do.  If I can get a better first rise, I'm sure that my results will improve. I'm not going to give up.....I will also change the brand of flour (and yeast again) in order to see if this makes a positive change.  Look forward to hearing any thoughts.  Thanks.

hening's picture

japanese white bread

I only baking Japanese Bread.
My family love the airy, moist, soft and fluffy texture very much.
This is an excellent recipe for the light diet.
Good for making either sweet or salty sandwiches.

White Bread
bread flour (or all purpose) 100%  250G--for a 450G loaf pan
instant yeast 1.2%  3G
water ≥76% 190G+
sugar 4%   10G
salt  2%   5G
milk powder 2%  5G
unsalted butter 4%  10G

You can use vegetable oil instead of butter to make a vegan bread.The percentages of sugar and butter are much lower than the normal recipes, but the milk powder give enough helping for its fermentation.
Just follow by regular directions of making straight dough (directly fermented)

oceanicthai's picture

Bacon, Dill & Roasted Garlic Sourdough

Dill, bacon, olive oil, roasted garlic sourdough bread.


The fam's favorite bread so far.  All gone already.

Dwayne's picture

BBA Vienna Bread with Dutch Crunch

I make this bread this weekend and I would like to thank all who have made this reciently and have posted to this site.  It certainly helps to see and read how others have made a certain bread.  I wish that I had checked here just before I started and David Snyder posted some picture showing the shaped loaves with the Dutch crunch on. 


I followed the recipe very closely.  When it came time to mix and apply the Dutch Crunch I was surprised how thick it was.  I used all the water that the recipe called for.  It was so think that I applied it to my dough using the back of a spoon that I would dip into the mixture and then apply to the loaves.  I was very pleaed with the way this bread turned out.  I'll be making this again.  I froze the extra Dutch Crunch mixture, I'll try putting it on some other bread.  My Son helped by taking the last two pictures.




Again thanks to all posters who shared their experiences and pictures.



Pop N Fresh's picture
Pop N Fresh

Statistics for Bakery Business Plans


Hi Folks,

I stumbled upon this great resource (AIB International Bakery Statistics) and thought it might be of use to those of you who are in the process of or thinking about writing a bakery business plan.


Great Baking,


davidg618's picture

65% hydrated baguettes

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

merlie's picture

About to give up and/or sit down and cry!

I seem to be destined to never make my own starter ! My first attempt was Peter Reinhart's formula from  BBA. That just sat there , was very runny and did nothing. ( for days!) Next I went to my Tartine book and tried Chad Robertson's method. This resulted in it separating and forming a nasty black skin - never did bubble up or look anything like the pictures. Now , having read many posts here on TFL I am about to toss out my third attempt - PR's method from Artisan Breads Every Day with pinapple juice. I used a 50/50 blend of bread flour and WW flour. ( because Chad Robertson made me mix up 5lbs of it ! ) This attempt looked promising - a few tiny bubbles on day 3 - so I added flour and juice as per instructions and waited.....I stirred as instructed and waited......still no bubbling. When stirred there were bubbles inside but it did not  appear " active and bubbly " on the top. Day 7 came and went. I then decided to go ahead anyway just to see what would happen. Converting it to a Mother starter looked good. I formed a nice ball and followed PR's instructions to the letter, loosely covering it with plastic wrap. It could have doubled in 4 - 6hrs but it did not .As the house is a little below 70 degrees at night I put it in the oven with just the oven light on. Imagine my delight this morning to find that it had doubled ! This pleasure was short lived however when trying to follow the next step. ( "knead for a few seconds and form back into a ball ") It POURED onto my counter like a thick batter !!!  I have scraped it back into the bowl - what a mess.....It was much much wetter than a ciabatta dough. Why did it do this to me ??


So....feeling better now I've written it all down. If there is anyone near Armstrong, British Columbia throwing out starter please throw it this way !

Any communication gratfully received - Merlie