The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Weekend Reclamation Project – a step backward

wassisname's picture

Weekend Reclamation Project – a step backward

 Here's something that doesn't work...

Another attempt at WWSD without a bulk ferment.  It went less well this time.  I had to get these ideas out of my head, and now that that's done I can go back to methods with better odds. 

The formula follows, but I do not recommend it.  It is just there for the record.  And don't be fooled by the photos, they make it look better than it was.  I did eat it, the flavor was good, but the texture was marginal at best.  Really hard crust, really dense, slightly gummy crumb.  After a couple days on the counter all but the biggest holes in the crumb closed-up tight.  It went well with soup after a good toasting, but that was about it. 

STARTER:  288g WW bread flour, 216g water, 58g starter, ¼ tsp salt.  Refrigerated for the first 10 hrs then room temp for the next 10 hrs.

SOAKER:  175g WW flour, 25g whole rye flour, ½ tsp salt.  Room temp for 20 hrs.

FINAL DOUGH:  All of starter and soaker, 25g WW bread flour, 19g water, ¾ tsp salt.  Kneaded 5 min, rest 5 min, shaped.  Proofed 2 ¼ hrs.  Baked 475F w/ steam for 8 min, baked 425F about 40 min.

I'm not even going to get into the "why" of any of this.  Let's just say it seemed like a good idea at the time.  I could actually feel the dough breaking down, which was interesting.  It started to feel almost like a high% rye dough after just a few minutes of kneading even though there was hardly any rye in it.  Nothing makes me appreciate good bread like bad bread.



LindyD's picture

Hi Marcus - it doesn't look at all bad - but if you say it was a dud, then more power to you for writing about it.

We seem to always see perfect breads, artistically staged, as if problems never pop up.  But we all know better!  

Anyway, good for you for experimenting.  Quoting Maggie Glezer:  Success is a poor teacher.

wassisname's picture

Sometimes I just can't move on until I know what happens if I...

Mebake's picture

Hi, Marcus, A quick diagnosis would be that either your starter was not well fed prior to build, or the refrigeration invited bacterial and proteolytic action on your dough. WW ferment faster than partial ww. Furthermore, one should never attempt to refrigerate a just fed levain build: let it sit at room temperature until u see some serious activity then refrigerate.

Having said all that, i think your bread is good I have had much worse looking WW SD.


wassisname's picture

Now you've got me thinking again!  Just when I finally put this one behind me!=)

Seriously, though, thank you for the comment, it did just spark a thought.  More tinkering to come.


teketeke's picture

Hello, Marcus

For my experience, I always add salt after I autolize the rest of all the ingredients. And spread the dough on the work surface, then sprinkle the salt on it and fold and strech over and over.   When I mixed final dough and poolish and salt as I followed the recipe, The bread came out like yours.   My starter is very young ( september, 2010) so that my starter is not strong enough for the method in my opinion.

I also use the method --  

I am a bigginer but I wanted to tell you what I know right now :)

Happy baking,



wassisname's picture

Good point, and thanks for the link!