The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

When to add salt

chiefWright's picture
chiefWright

When to add salt

I really like salty bread, but have found that too much seems to retard rising.  Today I tried a 5 grain sourdough where I added no salt until I formed the loaf-- by rolling out the dough into a sheet, then sprinkling the sheet with salt, then rolling up the sheet and forming the loafs.


I got a great rise, crust & crumb, but the flavor was unusual-- I could taste the salt, but the bread just wasn't very savory.  I do use a natural salt which has very good flavor on its own.


Any ideas on how to get the salt flavor up without retarding the rise?

ClimbHi's picture
ClimbHi

I'm no expert, but my understanding is that the salt kills some of the yeast and the dead yeast is subsequently "digested" by the remaining creatures living in the dough, yielding the complex flavors we are looking for in artisan bread. So, killing off *some* of the yeast is actually a good thing. You might try adding the called-for amount of salt at the mixing stage, and using your method to up the ante later.


ClimbHi
Pittsburgh, PA

chiefWright's picture
chiefWright

I had no idea that good ol' comfort food bread was such a hostile environment!  that's a great idea; I'll try it out in my next batch.

xaipete's picture
xaipete

I like salt too, so my compromise is to put salted butter on the bread when I eat it. I prefer homemade unsalted butter with a little sprinkle of kosher salt.


I've still got a lot of butter that was leftover from making buttermilk for my St. Patrick's day Irish Soda loaf. The butter came out great and is extremely tasty. I'll probably be making my own butter from now on.


--Pamela