The Fresh Loaf

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can you punch down and re-proof an overproofed dough?

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avatrx1's picture
avatrx1

can you punch down and re-proof an overproofed dough?

I made 3 loaves today but only had 1 cast iron pot to do them in.  By the time I got around to the 3rd one - doing them one at a time, I think it had overproofed.  I baked it anyway and it's OK, but it didn't get the oven spring I think it should have.


What would be my solution in the future for this type of problem.  This is a large recipe - Mark Sinclairs whole grain.


Can I punch it down and then reshape and re-proof and then bake or is the leavening (in this case - yeast) pretty much done for?


-susie


 

OldWoodenSpoon's picture
OldWoodenSpoon

of too many loaves to fit into my oven, and what I have done is to "retard" the final proof on some loaves that must be baked later.  I refrigerate them for a while to slow them down, and then get them back out to warm up before baking them.  I haven't ever tried your idea, though.


I am no authority, but I believe the issue is not that the yeast is done for, but rather, that the food may be used up.  The yeast feeds on the starches in the dough, and severe overproofing may not leave enough food for a later rise.  If it is only mildly overproofed then it might work.  As I said, I've not tried it.  Hopefully some who know much more than I do will reply for you here as well.


One thing I've already learned here at TFL though:  Try it!  It may just work out wonderfully.  Happy baking!


OldWoodenSpoon

Floydm's picture
Floydm

Yeah, I think if are going to split the batch it'd make sense to retard the second and third loaves a bit sooner because you want them to all hit the oven when they are at their peak.  I the using the fridge or a cold room in your house is a good way to do that.  I'd think about doing something like



  • Bulk ferment of all the dough at room temperature

  • Pull one piece off, shape it, and let it rise at room temperature.  Put the rest some place cool.

  • When you are getting ready to bake the first, pull another chunk off, shape, and let rise at room temperature

  • When you are getting ready to bake the second, do the same with the third.


That sounds like it'd work well, but it'll take trial and error to get it right in your house and oven.


Good luck!

avatrx1's picture
avatrx1

I guess I didn't plan ahead well enough.  I made 2 boules and 1 batard.  The batard was the last one.  The smaller boule was the first - done in a smaller pot than the larger one.  The batard I did on a large commercial sheet pan covered with a roaster cover for the first 15 minutes.  Prior to putting it in it had started to deflate in the middle.  I brushed it with butter while hot and just had to try it.  What a great recipe!  I KNOW - you're supposed to wait until they cool, but I had to check to see if it looked OK on the inside despite it's deflating.  The smaller one I'm giving to my sister in law.My bake of Mark Sinclair's multigrain

OldWoodenSpoon's picture
OldWoodenSpoon

Those look delicious!  You got nice full coloring and I like your unrestrained slashing.  Your sister-in-law should be delighted.


OldWoodenSpoon

mrfrost's picture
mrfrost

King Arthur Yeast Bread Primer: 


http://www.kingarthurflour.com/tips/yeast-bread-primer.html


"...Final Rising...Dough can overrise. When it has, it looks billowy, as though it was pumped full of air. Don't be tempted to let your dough rise to this point hoping that the baked loaves will be lighter. Overrisen dough tends to collapse on itself either before or while it's baking. As a result, the bread will be dense and sour tasting, the opposite of what you intended.


If your dough should overrise after it's shaped, just knock it down and quickly reshape it (and pretend you meant to have it rise again all along)...."

avatrx1's picture
avatrx1

Thanks to all for the input.  I'll try retarding the unbaked ones in the fridge next time and if I forget that - I'll punch down and start the rise over.  hopefully it won't come to that.  But the fact that they looked 'pumped full of air' is a really good description of what I encoutered with the batard.  I knew as soon as I looked at it there was a problem.  I REALLY knew it when I picked it up to  put on the baking sheet.


The part that made me the happiest was that I ground the wheat this mornig and used mostly that.  I'd never used freshly ground wheat berries before even though I've had them for a very long time in a big storage bag.  I ground the wheat in a spare burr coffee grinder that I had and it worked out really well.  I did some on espresso grind and some on a coarser grind since I really didn't  know what I was doing - just punting.


Mark Sinclair should get the credit for the nice look.  His multigrain recipe is wonderful!


-susie