The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

A question about crumb

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AKAlicious's picture
AKAlicious

A question about crumb

I hope I've put this post in the most appropriate section...


After reading posts on this site for over a year, I finally got around to joining so I could ask a question that has flummoxed me for years...What is meant by "crumb?"  I've been cooking and baking for 20 years but only started baking bread about a year ago.  I know that the word "crumb" is used in reference to cakes as well as breads, but I've never understood what it's referring to and never bothered to ask anyone--until now.  So bakers, can any of ya'll enlighten me? 


Thank you and happy baking! :)


>AKAlicious

Ford's picture
Ford

Crumb:  Term referring to the interior texture, gluten network, tenderness, and general feel of a bread.  Desirable crumb size and texture varies depending on the product.  Kneaded breads are generally fine and even, although when using sourdough starters the product may contain large bubbles.  Batter breads generally contain a coarse crumb.

AKAlicious's picture
AKAlicious

Thanks for the info Ford!  I guess I have a bit of trouble imagining and detecting the different types of crumb, but your reply definitely clears it up a bit.  I tend to think in a rather analytical manner and since I presently lack the vocabulary (blush) with regard to bread, that's where the confusion comes in.  I'm so glad to have some answers to my question!!! :)


>AKAlicious

LindyD's picture
LindyD

There are lots of baking terms described in TFL's glossary - you'll find it at the Handbook tab above.


Enjoy!

AKAlicious's picture
AKAlicious

Thanks so much!  I never noticed the glossary before!

PaddyL's picture
PaddyL

When you've cut the bread or cake, you can see if the insides are crumbly or soft or full of holes or dense or whatever.  The 'crumb' is the guts of the bread or cake.

AKAlicious's picture
AKAlicious

Thanks PaddyL!  Somehow imagining it as the guts is actually phenomenally helpful to me! :)  I always knew it was the "innards" but you just put it into full living color for me. :D

Deonia's picture
Deonia

Hi, I associate the word "crumb" with the texture of  the  product, ie...how dense, spongy, dry, tender, moist whatever i'm baking is.