The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

poor rise using unenriched organic flour

lowecc's picture

poor rise using unenriched organic flour

I am baking small scale for my retail store.  I have been making an oatmeal bread for months now without any problems.  I have been wanting to switch to unbleached, unenriched flour and made the plunge last week.  Made my first batch of oatmeal bread yesterday and the bread would not rise.  Repeated the process today including vital wheat gluten (I had forgotten that the day before) I had a little better results today (added more yeast) but still not happy with the results.  My loafs are very short, before I switched flour I had to really watch the bread so it wouldn't get too high, today it took forever to get to the top of the pan and would go no further.  Help!  Do I need to go back to my regular enriched unbleached flour?  I was wanting to avoid all the extra stuff they put into our flour, figured less is better.  Any advice is appreciated.  Thanks.

Crider's picture

That should help, has good flavor. Either that or keep fussing with the bakes until it comes out right.

SimplyDenise's picture


Thanks to this website I have had much better success with my breads and I only use unenriched unbleached organic flours. The flavour is so much better.

I found the answer in folding my dough during the bulk fermentation proccess. I usually fold twice in a 3 hour period, but some of the vets. on this site I know  fold almost every 20 minutes or so, I don't have time for that!

You will have to adjust a few things because you no longer are having all those chemical agents in your flour. You may need to bump up your bulk fermentation time, I have found 3-4 hours adequate but when I can allow them to ferment 6 hours the result is that much better. But I would also ask you what brand of flour you are using and how old it is all these factors make a large difference.

I too sell my product and trust me it has been a little bit of trial and error but you will get it and will be so much happier with the result. And don't forget to charge a little more for your product cause those flours are not cheap.

I hope this helps and let us know what happens.


lowecc's picture

Thanks for the info, I am using Bob's Red Mill organic white flour.  I have not been folding but will give it a try and am thinking I will let it proof overnight in our cooler to give it enough time to rise.  My other breads are doing fine with the new flour, so I don't think it's an age thing, but I will check the dates on the flour.  Thanks so much for responding, the last 2 days have been very frustrating.

Connie's picture

   I have been baking most of our bread for a long time, however I always use Unbleached AP flour. A few days ago my son-in-law thought to do me a favor and picked me up a twenty-five lb sack of bleached bread flour. Is it useable for bread?                             Thanks     Bill

rockfish42's picture

It is, it just imho doesn't taste nearly as good as unbleached flour.

LindyD's picture

I think if you determine the chemical used to bleach the flour, you can research it and make an informed decision whether you want to consume it.  Is the flour bromated as well?

That info should be listed on the ingredient label or on the manufacturer's website.

Am sure that if you determine there are health concerns because of the chemicals, your SIL will understand your need to exchange or return the flour.

Good luck.