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First 100% Rye Sourdough, OK on the outside, hollow on the inside.

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josswinn's picture
josswinn

First 100% Rye Sourdough, OK on the outside, hollow on the inside.

Hello, 


My first post here and my first 100% Rye Sourdough. It's a failure and I'm wondering why. I followed Andrew Whitley's directions in Bread Matters (p. 165). Everything seemed to go according to plan from making the starter to the 12hr proof. But on taking it (actually, I made two - both came out the same) out of the oven, the inside of the loaf was as you see below. Where did I go wrong? Thanks for any suggestions.


100% Rye Sourdough - Rubbish!

Franko's picture
Franko

Hi,


There definitely seems to be a lack of structure to the crumb. To my eyes it looks undermixed, which is easy to do with a 100% rye. If the dough isn't developed properly through the initial mix and by working it on the table a lot of other things can go wrong as well. The thing is, rye bread and particularly 100% rye doesn't feel or act the same as a wheat dough and it doesn't need a lot of working, but it needs some. This amounts to basically patting the dough down and then using a pastry scraper and wet hands to fold the dough a few times to get some uniformity in the dough before it's bulk ferment . Hopefully this is of some use to you and is my best guess from looking at the photo. Good luck on your next one.


Franko

nicodvb's picture
nicodvb

I can't find the link, but in a short paper I read months ago (that explained the problems and the solutions much better than I can do) a researcher explained that the most likely cause of a collapse like that (your bread lost its roof) is the too little level of acidity. It's not unlikely to see rye breads recipes calling for the addition of vinegar. The reason is simple: rye rises relying on a fragile structure of carbohydrates (penthosans) that is quickly eroded by the very high activity of amylase, that in turn can be relented only by a drop in PH.


Generally the sourdough is acidic enough, but sometimes it's not. Adding vinegar and salt (this last one for reasons that I don't understand- it would make sense in a mixed floured bread, but this is not the case) was the most effective solution found, at least according to that paper.


[edit, here's the link]


http://www.ssc.upenn.edu/~croehler/sourdough.htm


 


How much did you let your bread rise before baking it? How much sourdough did you use with respect to the  flour in the final dough? Did you follow the russian rye bread recipe? I did it, and I didn't have this problem (a tasty adventure, I have to say), but I doubled the amount of salt and reduced the final water to something like 120 gr because it was too much in my opinion. How was the consistence  of you dough  like? Could you work it with a spoon?

suave's picture
suave

It's a classic example of insufficiently acidified dough.   Most likely your full sour was not acidic enough.

josswinn's picture
josswinn

Thanks very much for all your advice. The examples in the paper linked to above illustrate my problem clearly. I'll work on the acidity of my dough. 


I followed Whitley's Russian Rye Bread recipe very closely:


4 day old dark rye starter,  from which I took 50g and added it to 150g of dark rye flour and 300g of warm water.


I mixed this well and left for 12hrs.


I then combined 440g of this 'production sourdough' with 330g of dark rye flour, 5g salt and 200g of warm water.  I mixed this well. It was too wet to work on the table (as the recipe said) and I poured it into a greased tin. 


I covered it and left it for 8 hours in my kitchen on a warm day. It rose to the top of the tin (as the recipe said it should). I then put it into a hot oven (230c) for ten minutes and reduced the temperature by 20c where it remained for another 50 mins.


It didn't really rise once in the oven. The top of the crust became pretty hard over this time, too.

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

As I suspected.  Warm and 8 hours! (I got the impression final proof was 12 hours)  When I wrote the below entry.  Try 6 hours or less.


What should the dough look like when it's ready for the oven?  There should not be pea size bubbles breaking on the surface of the dough like little moon craters.  At the first sign of these coming near the surface, there is danger of overproofing, bake asap!  If you rest a wet hand on the dough half way into the final rise, you can feel sponginess increasing as the dough proofs. 


Gas pockets are very "bouncy" in comparison to the dough around them.  This is a sign that it has proofed long enough and it might be good idea to dock the loaf and release these large pockets and bake the dough very soon.  I dock with a toothpick or bamboo saté stick.  Smooth the holes over with a wet finger.  It sinks the dough just a cm but the rise is greater in the oven.


Your recipe looks sour enough! Did it smell sour? 


Q: What is a 4 day old dark rye starter?  (A new starter? Then it might be it wasn't mature enough to handle the job.)


Mini

josswinn's picture
josswinn

I see. Yes, there were pea sized bubbles on the surface of the dough when I came back from work. I need to figure out a way of timing the various stages around my day.


It did smell sour. The '4 day old dark rye starter' is a new starter. The first rye starter I've made. It was quite wet and smelled pretty sour by day 4. 


Thanks for your help. I'm learning :-) Today, I'm trying a large round sourdough wholemeal 'country loaf' (again from Whitely's book). 

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

they will slice better when cold.  If you have room, freeze frozen slices or crumbs and use to feed the starter.  I would say about two 1cm slices per loaf of new bread.  You can just crumble this into the newly refreshed starter and let it ripen.  It adds a whole new dimention to rye bread!  And no one will eat it up before you can use it.  I think if it were me, I might crumb and freeze and then add a coffee mug of crumbs to the starter after I warm them up for 15 sec in the microwave.  Sticking my fingers in to make sure they aren't too hot.   


No waste.


Mini

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

It looks like it rose, the crust got set and the unbaked dough fell on itself inside as the structure gave way to gravity.  The CO2 passed out of any bubbles that couldn't trap the gas and so formed the support for the dome as the dough just lay dense inside the baked crust not being able to trap the bubbles.  Not only low acid but a 12 hour proofing is a long time for a 100% rye.   Eight hours is the limit I found at 23°C.  If the starter was salted and then salt added to the dough from the very beginning, maybe 12 hours.  Salt toughens the structural bonds in the dough so the ferment is less agressive to the structure.  Salt doesn't prevent decomposition, it just puts up temporary barriers.


Mini

ananda's picture
ananda

http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/15577/pure-sourdough-rye-year-1939#comment-99318


http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/15974/sour-dough-leaven-refreshment-and-ash-content


Hi,


I advise you to start by reading through the posts referenced above.   Mini is right on both counts.   Your sour culture needs a better feeding regime to make it stronger.   Your final proof is way over and that is why you have the gaping hole....there is no dough structure.   This is very little to do with the mixing as identified by an earlier poster.   Rye has a gluten content, but the quality is excelptionally poor.   Instead the structure is knitted together by the fibrous pentosans which interlink the starch molecules.   The dough becomes extremely unstable late on in proof, and early in the baking cycle.   Using a sour is a way of maintaining strength in the poentosan structure.   You may want to look into this further once you have become happy with producing this bread.


Both my posts, referenced above, give you access to the production recipe for this bread.   I worked at Village Bakery from 1994 to 2003, and made about 3000 of these loaves, every week.   I hope the threads help you to make the corrections needed.


All good wishes


Andy

Franko's picture
Franko

Hi Andy,


Thanks for those excellent posts on rye. Although I've been a baker for the better part of my career, my experience with rye bread is very limited. I've worked  in the bake shop for a grocery store chain here in Canada for over 20 years and unfortunatley we only make one rye bread . It's a 25% rye and very easy to make. The information that you and others on this site provide is giving me a much better understanding of high ratio rye bread that I've neglected for too long.


Thanks again, all the best,


Franko

josswinn's picture
josswinn

Thanks, Andy. In less than 24hrs of joining this site and posting my question I've received some really useful and thorough advice, not least yours. I'll be sure to let you all know when I manage a decent 100% Rye sourdough :-)

ananda's picture
ananda

...and Welcome to TFL!


Please let us all know how you get on with the rye!


Andy