What happens to dough once it is flattened (or rolled out) and left over time?
Does anyone know what happens to dough that is flattened or rolled out but then left for a day? What does the yeast do, what happens to the dough itself?
I rolled out some dough and didn't end up using it all, so I put 2 of them in the fridge but left them rolled out. When I took them out of the fridge and let them come to room temperature, I noticed the dough had only very slightly contracted, but pretty much kept the shape of when I rolled it out. However, I noticed that the dough had become much more elastic than it was before, so when I worked with it, it was very easy to get it extremely thin without really breaking it.
My question is, why did that happen? Is this common practice in certain types of baking where you want to really stretch out the dough?
Sorry I'm new to baking and found this kind of fascinating, just would like to know why this happens. Personally I think it has to do with the fact that it cools down much quicker when its flattened, so it would be the same as if I had left a ball of dough out for maybe 30 minutes longer, but thats just my guess, would love to hear what people think.