The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

How long can dough keep in the fridge?

giyad's picture
giyad

How long can dough keep in the fridge?

I know this question has been asked many times before, but theres a little twist on my question.  I made a batch of dough that makes about 6-8 pizza-like sandwhiches.  The dough is pretty standard and doesn't contain anything but yeast, flour, water, salt, sugar and oil.  After finishing the dough mix, I usually don't use it right away and let it retard in the fridge until I'm ready to eat, however I can't eat 6-8 of these at once, so if there is no one around to share with, I usually end up pulling the dough out, let it come to room temperature, rise, and then I cut out as many balls as I'm going to use.  I then put the rest back in the fridge and repeat until the dough is done.

Last Thursday I made a batch and ate 3 pieces.  I then pulled it out of the fridge again on Monday and ate another 1.  So I still have about another 4 left, and today its been 7 days since I made that dough.  I've brought it out of the fridge and worked with it 3 times.  Today its smelling very alcoholic, kind of like a sourdough.  My question is, is this safe to eat and is it ok to work with dough like this?  Or should I just make smaller batches from now on?

The dough looks fine and I'm going to attempt it anyway in the next hour or so, but I'd rather not eat it if anyone thinks something may be foul.

tn gabe's picture
tn gabe

ok to work with? maybe you tried and realized it's a bit of a gooey mess at this point. i'd recommend smaller batches &/or trying pate fermente with it on the next batch.

giyad's picture
giyad

Thanks for your answer, I just finished baking with my dough and as you said it may have been a bit gooer, but nothing a bit of flour didn't solve.  It was pretty much the same to work with and tastes just as good :-)... a week in the fridge and it didn't spoil, bread is awesome!

wally's picture
wally

A straight dough such as you're using can be divided into portions, wrapped up well in plastic wrap and frozen.  In a non-defrosting freezer you can keep it for 6 months or longer.  In a frost-free freezer it's still going to be good for a month or so.  Just take out the portion you want the night before and allow it to defrost in your refrigerator.  Next day shape it, proof and bake.

I do this with bagels routinely so that I'm not having to make up small batches all the time.

Larry

Doc.Dough's picture
Doc.Dough

It is OK until the yeast runs out of food.

The alcohol you smell is alcohol.

Smaller batches might be the way to go, but dough is so inexpensive that there is no reason to not be ready to entertain or share.  And dough will keep a week in the refrigerator if you just keep it cold. But I would not bring the whole batch up to room temperature, just the part you want to use.  If it is not frozen, you can just cut off the piece you will use.  If it is frozen you have no choice.

giyad's picture
giyad

makes sense, I probably shouldn't have brought the whole thing to room temperature each time I wanted to work with it but I was greedy and didn't want to pull out another bowl to let it rise haha... its probably better to do it your way though

Nickisafoodie's picture
Nickisafoodie

See this post: I usually use sourdough and a rather wet dough, anywhere from 68% or more.  I routinely keep dough individually stored in oiled plastic containers, 3-7 days with no problem.  I once went almost two weeks.  The dough did not break down like yours.  I think the reason is you are using yeast which goes very fast, and you also have sugar in the dough which further feeds.  I use flour, water, and a bit of olive oil, and the starter.   Using the sourdough give more flavor that straight yeast (as it does for breads too).  If you would rather not pursue sourdough (no the dough isnt sour, the starter is full of natural yeast vs. store bought fast acting), at a minimum eliminate the sugar.  I have a pic of the pizza below on a 7 day "mistake" that came out great!!  have fun, be happy!!

http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/26626/7-day-ferment-pizza-dough-tartine-baguette-mistake

giyad's picture
giyad

I purchased a sourdough starter from King Arthur Flour and was using that for a while, it was great but it was a bit sour (in a good way).  The reason I stopped using the sourdough starter was that whenever I would make a dessert sandwhich it wouldn't taste good because the sour taste wouldn't compliment the sweet dessert.  I actually prefer the taste without sourdough as well, but I'm going to test out some other prefermenting methods and see if any of those work well.

Nickisafoodie's picture
Nickisafoodie

In the link above to my tartine bread turned pizza mistake, see the two posts that follow: one talks of being able to keep dough for two weeks!!!  I did this once and while the dough seemed to change, it did not fall apart and the bread came out great.  That said, 3-5 days is easy, 7 works, and beyond, well try it and see.  It either comes out or it doesnt, yes?  I bake in a 625 degree oven which is why the dough was 72% hydration, 68% works well too.