The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

My refrigerated dough won't rise the next day

darkmoondreamer's picture

My refrigerated dough won't rise the next day

Hello all! I'm working with the Artisan bread in 5 minutes a day Master Recipe...It rose very well on the first ferment and continued to rise huge overnight in the fridge. Today I took it out and cut 1 lb. of dough off, shaped it, and left it for the 40 min recommended rest before baking. The finished product was a tiny little bread loaf, very gummy and chewy, that had risen none that I could see. I took it out at *203 F. I was expecting a big around bread fully fluffed up.

Dissapointed by the size and finished bread rise, I now have a 2 lb. chunk resting in a basket. After 1 1/2 hours it still has not risen. I followed every instruction in the book to a Tee,....but my cold dough just won't rise. Can anyone give me more information on getting cold dough to rise? Thanks

Janknitz's picture

There could be lots of reasons for your difficulties: 

Is your kitchen cold?  Mine tends to be, and it always takes longer than the book says for dough to rise, particularly if your fridge is also very cold.  In the errata for the book, the authors state that 40 minutes should be the minimum proofing time and many breads take longer. 

Try warming it up a bit.  If you have a microwave, heat a cup of water to boiling, and then put the dough in there with the cup of hot water to proof (microwave off!).  Or put your dough near the oven while the oven is preheating. 

Try not to handle the dough too much--you don't want to degas it.  If you are an experienced breadbaker, the urge to knead is hard to overcome, but you really want to handle this dough as little as possible.  All that trapped gas is responsible for the rise in this dough. 

Make sure your dough is ready to be baked.  Press your finger lightly into the dough, if it springs back immediately it needs to proof longer.  If the dent remains, it's fully proofed ready to bake. 

Don't forget to score and make sure you are using steam (or my preferred method is to cover the dough with a foil pan for the first 15 to 17 minutes).  A dried out skin prevents the crucial oven spring you need. 

darkmoondreamer's picture

Thank  you for the tips Jan. I am microwaving water as I type. I will try a long rise even if it takes all day :)


I am not kneading, just stretching a little and rolling 4 corners under when shaping as the book instructs...