The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

The Opposite of Oven Spring

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EarleG's picture
EarleG

The Opposite of Oven Spring

I am in need of the wisdom of the group.  I have greatly enjoyed reading the daily posts since I subscribed to TFL and now find myself with I question of my own.  Yesterday I tried making the 100% whole wheat that I had seen written about here.  I began the night before with the poolish and yesterday morning, mixed the dough as instructed and went through the rises.  All went as expected and I put my loaves of bread ing the oven with a pan of ice cubes for steam.  So far so good!  The loaves had risen as expected and were at least a half inch above the level of the pans.  At 15 minutes of baking I looked in the oven and the loaves had shrunk considerably.  Definitely no oven spring!  When the baking finished, I removed the loaves and cooled them.  Everything smelled wonderful but, later in the day, when I cut into one of the loaves, the taste was objectionable.


I am a novice bread baker, so any suggestions as to what might have gone wrong here would be most appreciated.


EarleG

Yerffej's picture
Yerffej

Earle,


A very good guess is that the loaves were over proofed.


Jeff

BettyR's picture
BettyR

Can you explain about over proofed?


 


I have many times mixed flour, salt, water and yeast...left it sitting on the counter all day long...about 12 hours. Then gently shaped my loaf, let it rise about an hour and tossed it into a very hot oven. I always get an excellent loaf of bread.


 


Can you explain the difference between that and a sandwich loaf that collapsed?

Yerffej's picture
Yerffej

A properly proofed loaf is that dough which has almost reached the pinnacle of yeast activity and expansion.  The under proofed loaf is still growing and expanding.  The over proofed loaf has gone past the apex of expansion and is actually beginning to shrink even if this is not visible.


The under proofed loaf is likely to split open in the oven and the over proofed loaf with rise a bit before sinking into itself.


There is not enough information for me to answer your question on the sandwich loaf vs. the loaf you described.  I have no idea what the proportions and techniques were in either recipe.


Jeff

BettyR's picture
BettyR

 


2 cups warm water


2 teaspoons salt


2 teaspoons yeast


4-1/2 cups bread flour


Put 2-1/2 cups bread flour and the yeast in large mixer bowl. While beating on low speed add water to flour mixture until well blended. Then beat on high speed for 3 minutes. Add one more cup of flour and blend it in, then beat on high speed for 2 more minutes. Add in the last cup of flour, blend it in and beat on high speed until the dough starts to crawl up the paddle. Switch to dough hook and knead at medium speed until the dough leaves the sides of the mixer bowl. Cover with a damp towel and let rise until dough has at least trippled. (I put this together in the morning and just leave it until I'm ready to start supper. I form my loaf and bake it while I'm making supper so that the bread is still warm when we eat it.)


Turn out onto a floured counter and gently form your loaf. I place my formed loaf on parchment paper on my peel. Dust with flour and cover gently with a clean dish towel and allow to rise for 1 hour.


Slide parchment onto baking stone and bake in a preheated 450° oven for 30 minutes or until internal temperature of the loaf reaches 200°.


 




 



 

PeteInAz's picture
PeteInAz

You said, at the end: "...the taste was objectionable".

How so? Could you describe it?
The reason I ask is, there might be more then one thing going on here with your dough. Over proofing certainly seems to be at least part of the answer. I've made more then my share of door stops, but they, at least were edible. I'm just wondering what else might be going on that made it taste bad.

EarleG's picture
EarleG

I cannot describe it very well, Peter.   It was a very vinegary flavor.  Nothing I have tasted before.  I threw both loaves out, it was so bad.  Sorry I cannot give a better explanation.


EarleG

hutchndi's picture
hutchndi

The flour content of your dough recipe, once wetted, has a set time limit before its structure weakens and can no longer bear the weight of its own rising. This time limit varies for many reasons, like flour type, proofing temperature, extra ingredients, etc, all of which can affect the exact timing of the "sweet spot", the perfect time for putting your dough into the oven. While it is usually safer to somewhat under proof, especially if it is an unfamiliar recipe or one that you have newly tinkered with, this may hinder the resulting flavor build up which can really accelerate at this point. When you over proof you have surpassed this sweet spot, and while your dough may look OK going in the oven, it can very quickly reach the point where those properties break down, and everything collapses. While the network of gas filled holes can no longer support the risen loaf, all the factors that were creating the build up of flavor may have also surpassed what most would find as palatable. This can be especially true of a whole wheat sourdough bread, as the microbes responcable for this flavor build up have so much more nutrients to feed off, multiply, and create waste (the vinigary flavor). The 12 hour proof BettyR describes may just be the sweet spot for her dough recipe, in her kitchen environment, and the difference is that the sweet spot for EarlG's recipe and kitchen, is someplace else in the proofing timeline. 

PeteInAz's picture
PeteInAz

It sounds like something went acidic on you, which would, if I'm not mistaken, break down the gluten network in your dough and cause it to collapse.

Maybe check the date on your whole wheat, it may have gone bad.

Good luck with your next loaves and don't get discouraged. Just like all good gardeners have killed a lot of plants, all of excellent bakers have made a lot of bricks.

EarleG's picture
EarleG

Thanks for the encouragement, PeteinAZ.  I don't give up that easy.  I  will bake again tomorrow.  Take care.


 


EarleG