The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

I just experienced "Oven Flop."

Grandpa Larry's picture
Grandpa Larry

I just experienced "Oven Flop."

I've been bread baking for about fifteen years. I certainly do not consider myself an expert, but I am normally competent enough to bake a passable loaf.

I am, however, stumped by this experience.

I made a batch of pizza dough a couple of weeks ago: AP flour, olive oil, salt, 1 1/2 tsp Red Star Rapid Rise yeast. I divided the slack dough into three 11 oz balls, used two right away, and threw the third in the freezer.

I took it from the freezer and put it into the fridge three or four days ago. Since I had no plans to make pizza, I decided to use it as a pre ferment for some wheat bread I wanted to bake.

I combined it with four cups of Bob's Red Mill Whole Wheat flour, 1/4 cup of honey, 3 Tbl. corn oil, 1 3/4 cup water, and 4 tsp. Red Star Rapid Rise yeast. Kneaded 10 minutes in my Kitchen Aid.

It made about 2 lb 12 oz of dough

I allowed it to rise for about 90 minutes. The dough approximately doubled.

I deflated it, put it in a greased plastic bag and into the fridge.

I removed it this morning, shaped it into 2 loaves, and put them into my unlit but warm gas oven along with a pan of hot water.

Ninety minutes later they had risen over the top of the pan. I placed one loaf in a cold oven and set the temp for 375F, a technique which has always given me a nice oven spring. The other loaf I put in 30 minutes later.

Not only did neither loaf rise in the oven, both actually deflated into rectangular bricks.

The taste is just fine, quite good actually, but the texture, crumb, and crust leaves lots to be desired. The crust is thick and the texture is quite dense.

Can anyone explain to me what happened to my bread?

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

ya went and wore the dough out with all that rising and extra yeast.  

Crust color?  I'll bet pale at most.

hanseata's picture

The breads were definitely overproofed. I would recommend the finger poke test instead of just going by the looks (or the kitchen timer). If you poke the dough gently with your finger, it should slowly come back a bit, but leave a visible indentation. If it doesn't come back at all (and the bread doesn't contain stiffening ingredients, like a lot of nuts or seeds), it's likely to be overproofed.


dabrownman's picture

way better than belly flop and I'm not talking about the on in a swimming pool either :-)