The Fresh Loaf

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My doughs are very elastic... Reasons?

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elcouisto's picture

My doughs are very elastic... Reasons?

I have this problem with most of my doughs: they're very elastic when shaping my loaves. It gets very problematic when I have to roll it out (with a rolling pin) to shape things like cinnamon buns, or croissants (which totally break since the dough's way too elastic). I mix and knead by hand all the time and I always take care to develop gluten as much as I can, so I'm thinking it may be the problem. I've also read that too much flour may produce this effect, but since I'm using tested recipes, I know it's not that.

What do any of you think? Overkneading? Something else?


nicodvb's picture

A poolish used as preferment should help you to relieve the elasticity a bit .Mixing it with some weaker flour or adding some lard or margine should help, too.

amolitor's picture

The usual answer is: Let the dough rest for ten minutes.

When you're working it (stretching it out, rolling it out, any time you're trying to make it take a shape of any kind) you should start it in the right direction after it's had a rise (so it's been resting for an hour or so) and then when it starts to fight you and try to spring back, let it rest 10 minutes. Then work it some more, and if it starts to fight you again before you have gotten it to final shape, let is rest again.


clazar123's picture

When I first read your post, I thought you meant that your dough stretched out too easily and wouldn't hold it's shape but after re-reading the original post and the responses, I think I had it backwards.You are saying that it resists stretching out and you have to fight with it to get it to stretch out flat. Easy solution already stated by amolitor-rest the dough.

I ball my dough and then lightly flatten into a thick disk on a floured surface.

Rest 10-20 minutes. Cover so it doesn't dry out.

Gently start pulling into a larger,flatter,thinner disk( or rolling). The minute it starts resisting-stop and rest the dough.Cover to prevent drying.

The extra time is worth it-it is very aggravating working with a resistive dough and just raises my blood pressure.

"Pain is inevitable-suffering is not"

lazybaker's picture

Croissant dough will get elastic after rolling. The extra flour added during the rolling will just toughen the dough. Best not to add too much flour. A pinch of flour is enough. Brush off flour from dough and table. 

Wrap the croissant dough in plastic and let it chill in the fridge for 30 minutes to an hour or more. 

elcouisto's picture

I made a few more tests with rolling doughs and the problem was, in fact, not letting enough time for the dough to relax.

I had to try a croissant recipe from Julia Child in order to pinpoint the problem.

Thanks everyone!