The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Poolish Help

mark d's picture
mark d

Poolish Help

I am about to open a BBQ house and i want to make my own buns and i am not a baker.

I have made many poolishes but have yet to make one with flavor. I have read every thing i can about them.Do you leave it at room tem. over night, put it in the fridge or both. I get strong smells and bad flavor.

?? poolish set temp. ??large bubbles small bubbles??double in size tripple in size?? 4 hours, 12-16 hours, over night,days??

For the poolish

5 oz. Knoxbridge prem. high gluten (14.2% protein, .52% ash. non bromated, no malt,    yes on ascorbic acid and folic acid)

5 oz. water (tap, city)

.35 grams Lassaffie Instant Yeast (less than 1/8 tea.)



Floydm's picture

I'm happiest in the 12-16 hour range, room temperature (65-75F), ... batter-like consistency, approximately double in size, with a little bit of puckering in the center when it is ripe.

Good luck!


dwcoleman's picture

My poolishes always have what seems to be a bad smell, after you mix and ferment though it's much better.

Why not go with an enriched bread?


56g sugar

7g salt

35g butter

28g skim milk powder

1 egg

224g water

454g flour

14g yeast

Ferment 2h.

Form @ 120g, proof 45 minutes.

Egg wash twice waiting 2 minutes.

15 minutes @ 350F

mark d's picture
mark d

Thanks dwcolemon

Kosher or table salt?

Ferment 2 h ?  1st rise room temp. ?

Form @ 120g proof 45 min.?????

Rember I'am not a baker

BakerBen's picture

I love BBQ - where are you opening and when?

Buns - I would have a similar question as above - why are you set on using a poolish?  I would think that you would from the other end - that is, find a bun that you think is superior in taste and flavor than anything you can buy and then try to see if you can (1) find out the formula and then (2) see if you can bake them with reasonable efforts (i.e. is your effort worth the end product satisfaction and ultimately customer raves and business).  Just one guys thoughts.

Good luck and best wishes for a successful business,


mark d's picture
mark d

Mississippi, on Hwy 6 half way between Batesville and Oxford (Ole MISS). I'am not a baker but i think the smell of bread baking and a killer bun is the kind of thing you need in todays economy for a resturant to make it. I have been cooking compition BBQ on the Kansas city BBQ society and doing very well. I thought a poolish will give the best flavor. I don't care how the buns are made as long as it taste killer and will hold up to a chow down without falling apart.

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

 just combine the flour and water and let stand overnight.  Try it.  :)

lumos's picture

Never tried this method.  Very intriguing. Would it improve the sweetness, just as txfarmer experienced with her very long autolyse?  How do you do it? You just mix the ingredients for poolish except for yeast and proceed as normal poolish-based reciepe, adding all the yeast with the final flour&water?

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

I tend to use all the flour and the water/milk, yes, autolyse  and add everything else later.  I have even let it sit 12 hours and then into the fridge until I had time to work with it, sometimes a day later.  Get the fast rise after adding instant yeast (spread out the dough, mist and sprinkle with yeast, work it in and then do the same with the salt) like just mixed but natural sweetness from soaking.  It also doesn't rise on it's own before adding yeast so the container can be the size of the dough while it sits saving room in a crowded fridge.  In Summer temps. I would refrigerate it sooner to prevent the kind of bacterial rise often seen in beginning sourdough starters.  


lumos's picture

Thanks for the reply, Mini! 

It really sounds very similar to txfarmer's long autolyse. They must work on a same principle.  Having seen many of your brilliant breads over years and secretly admiring them, I feel safe enough to copy whatever you're doing yourself. I'll sure try it myself very soon.  ;) 

Also, you know...

 mist and sprinkle with yeast, work it in and then do the same with the salt)

This IS a brilliant tip. I've been sprinkling a teaspoon or two of water on the dough before adding yeast or salt, but misting is much easier and even, isnt' it.  Thank you very much for the bonus tip!



Juergen Krauss's picture
Juergen Krauss

100% flour, 100% water, 0.5% instant yeast, 12 hours at ambient temperature (25C)

Looked more bubbely - I stirred it with my finger

Frequent Flyer's picture
Frequent Flyer

I, too have been searching for the perfect BBQ bun and I favor the flavor of a poolish-made bread.  I have not experienced malodor and poor taste in a ripe poolish, regardless of the method (and I've used a range of methods).  Since there are only 3 ingredients in a poolish, why not make three small poolishes?  One would be the regular recipe, one uses a different flour and one uses bottled water.  I haven't heard of Lassaffie yeast.  It wouldn't be Lesaffre would it?  If so, I wouldn't suspect the SAF yeast, but you could add that as another variable.  Mix 'em up, let them sit covered for 3 to 4 hours and note any odor or taste variations. 

Just a note:  I've tried ciabatta buns for BBQ and liked them a lot.  The taste is good, though they are chewy and there's lots of pockets for sauce.  I use Jason's Quick Ciabatta recipe here.