The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

"Grainy" bread crumb help.

Wek's picture

"Grainy" bread crumb help.

I have been trying to make a sandwich bread but I havent gotten the results that I want. Every time I make any type of bread the crumbs come out "grainy" and falls apart pretty easily, like in the picture below:


What I want is a crumb that is more like "thread/strands", like the ones you buy from the store.  Somethin like this:

Does anyone know how I can accomplish this? Everything else is coming out pleasantly. I use AP flours, would bread flour give a better firm and crumb?


Btw, how many cups of flour would fill up a 9x5 loaf pan? I was told 8 but that seems to be too much.

ananda's picture

Hi Wek,

You need a strong flour, and significant dough mixing to achieve this type of crumb.   A small quantity of hard fat would also be beneficial.   If you are not using additives, then you will need to use either a reasonable period of bulk fermentation, or use a pre-ferment such as a stiff biga.

I can't help you on volumetric measures, sorry.

All good wishes


BeekeeperJ's picture

You could also try the water roux method. Do a search in the forum box and you will see a few links for it. Also maybe its over mixed or under mixed. How long are you mixing and in what manner?

lazybaker's picture

Use bread flour.

I was looking at

For a 9 x 5 pan, it's 4 cups of flour. 

clazar123's picture

Your picture is a valuable aid but your method of mixing/handling and the recipe would be very helpful. Technique, more than recipe, can determine the loaf characteristics.

Did you slice this loaf while still warm? That could account for some of the moist crumb. The loaf needs to cool for at least an hour to help redistribute and absorb all the steam.

This loaf also looks to be a bit underproofed.Take a look at the 2 breads. Notice how your loaf has more density around the outer edge of the loaf all the way around. It looks like it needed a little more time in the final rise before baking. Look up "finger poke test" in the search box.

Could it also be a little underbaked to account for the moistness of the crumb? Check the internal temp of the loaf when you think it's done-it should be about 190F-200F.The top crust looks to be a nice color but I bet the sides are paler-can't tell from the pic.Probably 5-10 more minutes in the oven.

What kind of oven do you have? If your oven element is on the top,lower the rack 1 slot, if you think it may overbrown before its done.

It wasn't a brick-looks delicioius! Enjoy this one and keep going! I found the only way to figure out how to do something is to do it over and over and discover many ways NOT to do it, along the way.It goes faster if you keep notes of what you did.

Wek's picture

One clarification, the picture above isn't my bread, I found it on the forum but it resembles my finished product.


The recipe I followed was actually from lesson 4 with some tweaks.

 3 cups of AP flour

1 and 1/4 tsp of instant yeast

1/3 cup of water

1/3 cup of milk

1/3 cup of melted butter (omitted salt because of salted butter)

I hand-kneaded the dough for probably 10 minutes, until it was relatively easy to stretch and smooth. Then let it ferment for about 2 hours and then proofed for about 1.5 hours. Baked it at 400F for about 40 mins.

The dough did double in size during the ferment and proofing.

I will try again but this time I wont mess around with the recipe and will use a very old mixer. Also, do you think that using a little more yeast will help in getting a more spongy/fluffy/soft crumb?

One final question, does anyone do a 3rd rise? I wanted to do a 3rd rise because I didn't shape the dough perfectly before the second rise but I have never seen a recipe call for a thrid rise.