The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

confused about cold fermentation

blamejane's picture

confused about cold fermentation

I've got a triple batch of Classic French, a triple batch of Ciabatta  and 10 bagels (all from PR's ABED book) in the fridge.  Everything went in the fridge at about 10pm last night.  I was hoping to fire up the brick oven and bake today as it's our only real day off until next Thursday.  The plan was to bake at 5 pm today.  After finding this wonderful site, and reading so much information in the forum, I wonder I should really be letting my dough stay in the fridge for another day. 

Do you guys think that's too short of a fermentation?

I could possibly bake on Monday instead, but not without some difficulty.  I usually have the dough in the fridge much earlier in the evening, another reason I'm wondering if I shouldn't hold off.

Anyway, I'm new at this and so still have soooo much to learn.  I'm confused because my timeframe doesn't seem like a delayed cold-fermentation.  It's less time than those who do 24 bulk fermentation.  I know it's about experimenting, which is what I'm doing really.  I just don't want to waste the large batches.  I will say that all of my previous attempts at these breads has been very successful (tasty), but then I'm no expert!  What do you guys think?


grumpidoc's picture

Hi - Sorry this reply is probably a bit late. I'm no expert, but from my experience, if it's white flour it can keep a few days in the fridge (which is how the 'Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day' method works) but whole wheat loses its rising power sooner. I've gone from baking my 100% wholemeal 36 hours after mixing, to baking about 15 hours after. This gives me the best compromise between flavour and rising power. (I'm in the UK and our flour is generally a bit lower gluten than in the USA). But I frequently mix white baguettes on a Monday morning and bake on a Friday, and they develop a lovely flavour. Hope that's some help!