The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Quick Question

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loveysangel's picture

Quick Question

Good afternoon guys :)  I have a quick question for anyone that would care to answer it. If you all dont know the answer no one will. ok here goes:  When making any type of bread, what are the differences between adding warm milk as opposed to warm water. Are there any advantages or does it really not matter except as to preference? Say soft pretzels for example, I have seen recipes that call for milk, others call for water. I DO know that in making bagels, I personally think brown sugar gives better texture than granulated suger, but again thats just preference. Are milk and water the same thing?  Any insight will be much appreciated.

dmsnyder's picture

The main effects of using milk rather than water in bread dough would be:

1. A softer, more tender crust and crumb.

2. More browning of the crust due to the sugar in the milk.


ananda's picture

David has the key answers.

Just to clarify, the lactose sugars in milk are not fermentable by yeast, so that's why you get the browning.

te softening will come from the fat content which gives all the enriching benefits in the dough.

Best wishes


loveysangel's picture

Thanx guys. I appreciate the information. :)  I will keep this in mind next time I make rolls. I might eperiment and see what happens.

Islandlakebaker's picture

I have found that milk will give a tighter crumb, softer, water a more open chewy crumb. Milk in a ciabatta dough would be a very bad thing...