The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Flat bread!

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redbudharry's picture
redbudharry

Flat bread!

After letting the white basic bread dough raise until doubled I have problems with the dough going flat while shaping.  I mix the dough in a KitchenAid and let it raise in a oiled bowl until doubled. During shaping it it goes flat and does not raise in the bread pan while baking.

Can it be the work surface is too cool? This time I plan to use a wooden surface.

I have watched numerous YouTube videos and so far can not decern what is wrong. Do you have a suggestion?

 

thomaschacon's picture
thomaschacon (not verified)

The general steps to making bread are:

  • measure ingredients
  • mix ingredients until combined
  • kneading
  • first rise (bulk fermentation)
  • shape
  • second rise (proofing)
  • bake

From your description, it sounds like you're skipping the second rise.

Shape it, put it in the bread pan, let it rise a second time, then bake it. 

redbudharry's picture
redbudharry

Thanks for your reply.

I have gone to a 2nd. rise (maybe rising too long as suggested elswhere). Finished loafs are under 2" high.

Because of experimenting my recipe is:
1 cup of flour, 1 tsp of yeast 
1/2 tsp sugar, 1/2 tsp salt
1 cup water

Is this recipe OK?

RobynNZ's picture
RobynNZ

Once I learned the basics of breadmaking I felt free to start experimenting and have had a lot of fun doing so, but it seems to me that following a tried and true bread formula is the way to go at the beginning. The formula you have come up with would challenge many of us, in particular the water level is high. While I don't know what size of tin you are using, you are expecting one cup of flour to 'grow' much more than is realistic. As a reference, to fill a 9" x 5" tin, takes about 2 pounds of dough. The colour of the baked loaf and the crumb tell me that the yeast used up all the food before the loaf reached the oven, yes it was overproofed.

At the top of the page in the dark banner you will see a links to "Lessons". Why don't you try Floyd's "First Loaf", you will see he uses the same ingredients (well no sugar) but the ratios are different. You can also read how others got on using his formula.

It is very hard to determine when a rising loaf has doubled in volume without some form of scale. When I started out I filled a large pyrex bowl with cups of water marking on the outside of the bowl, for each cup, then I could see when my 4 cups worth of dough had grown to occupy 8 cups of volume.  If you have a clear straight sided container it is even easier to determine doubling. While it might seem that by allowing it to keep 'growing' you will get a big loaf, as you have found out, once they run out of food the yeasts no longer produce the gas by-product which we rely on for 'inflating' our bread.

Come back and let us know how you get on. Don't hesitate to ask more questions.

redbudharry's picture
redbudharry

What you say makes sense. I will try the "First Loaf"

I tried the 1 cup of flour recipe in order to make a small finished loaf. In the past, using a bread machine, the bread would get stale before the two of us could eat it all. Now we are trying bread making by  hand. Maybe we can share with a neighbor.

"The colour of the baked loaf and the crumb tell me that the yeast used up all the food before the loaf reached the oven, yes it was overproofed." Now that really sounds like a good possibility, Thanks.

 

RobynNZ's picture
RobynNZ

I find the freezer is my friend when it comes to storing bread and keeping it fresh. I slice cooled bread, cutting some thin slices and some thick slices, put them in a freezer bag, expelling as much air as possible and then freeze. Thawing method depends on how I want to use it. If I am expecting company I will sometimes freeze an entire loaf and warm it in the oven to thaw before slicing. Avoid putting the bread in the fridge as it will dry your bread out, thus hastening staling.

As you branch out with your experiments you will learn about a number of techniques and/or ingredients which help delay staling. But for now concentrating on basic technique, with a simple formula is a good plan. Once you have had some successes with the 'First Loaf' you can look to trying some other formula.

 

flournwater's picture
flournwater

Your problem may be with the interpretation of "double in size".  Allowing the bread to spend too much time in the "rise" (bulk fermentation) phase can cause overproofing which produces the results you describe.  Throw your bread timing clock in the trash and try using the finger poke test to determine when to initiate your shaping process.

Just type "finger poke test" in the search box at the top left corner of this page.

redbudharry's picture
redbudharry

Thanks for your reply.

I will try finger poking on my next loaf. Should I finger test on both rises?

redbudharry's picture
redbudharry

As you can see, yesterday's one cup of flour recipe is less than 2" high. Thanks for your earlier comments.

whosinthekitchen's picture
whosinthekitchen

to one tsp of yeast may get you an over rise from the yeast.  After the rise, do you deflate the dough totally? The stretch, fold in thirds procedure may help retain some of the rise for the second round.   Also, the pan you bake in is wide allowing horizontal spread rather than vertical rise.  Do you have a narrower bread pan?  What is the source for the recipe?  Keep at it!

whosinthekitchen~Lisa

redbudharry's picture
redbudharry

After the rise, do you deflate the dough totally? I don't think so. I punch it down. Should I deflate totally?

Do you have a narrower bread pan? Yes, 9x5 & 8x4. I might try smaller, single use, foil pans

alabubba's picture
alabubba

Harry, The obvious thing is your not making enough dough! 1 cup flour would make a tiny loaf, from the looks of your picture its a good loaf, just too little dough. My sandwich loaf pan is 5x9 and I use 3-1/2 cups flour.

Also, the recipe you listed 1 cup flour to 1 cup water would make flour soup.

Here is a recipe that I bake every week. http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/14413/my-daily-bread

Allan

redbudharry's picture
redbudharry

A typo! Should have typed 1/3 cup water. After learning bread making, I'll give typing a shot.  ;>)

Anyway, it's now to the "First Loaf" recipe.

redbudharry's picture
redbudharry

An excellant recipe & photos! Thanks.

redbudharry's picture
redbudharry

thomaschacon's picture
thomaschacon (not verified)

I'm thinking that's about as much of a rise as you're going to get from this recipe.

If you want it higher, use more dough (or use a more narrow baking pan).

If you want it darker, try baking it a little longer.