The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Dough not rising much in new proofing box??

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Bread Head's picture
Bread Head

Dough not rising much in new proofing box??

Hi,

Just used my Brod and Taylor Proofing Box for the 2nd time and it doesn't seem like the dough is rising much at all.

I don't understand, it seems like my bread rose more on my counter than my new proofing box?

I have the box temp set to 80 degrees with the little tray of water on the bottom.  

Am I doing something wrong?

Thanks!

wildman's picture
wildman

Must be, is it plugged in?

LindyD's picture
LindyD

Is the light on?  When you first plug it in and turn on the power switch, the light blinks red as it heats up, then turns to green once the programmed temp stabilizes.  It does continue to blink red on occasion, but that's just an indication it's keeping the temperature at the desired rate.  

If you have a small thermometer around, place it inside the proofer and check the internal temperature.   If you see a problem, contact the folks at Brod & Taylor.  They are wonderful to deal with and have fabulous customer service.   My B&T proofer has proven so invaluable, it's the most important bread baking tool I own.

What type of bread are you mixing?  Sourdough?  Yeasted bread?

Bread Head's picture
Bread Head

Yes the light is on and it is doing everything you wrote.

I am making the Tartine Bread it is a naturally leavened bread.  I guess you can consider it Sourdough (sorry I don't have any experience with bread other than this recipe and the "no knead" bread.

 

PMcCool's picture
PMcCool

when the bread seemed to rise faster on the counter-top?  If it was warmer than 80F, then your bread probably did rise faster there.  

Not to sound silly, but did you put the yeast in this batch?  That kind of slows things down.  ;-)

How long has the dough been in the proofer?  If the dough itself was cool when it went in, it needs enough time to warm all the way through.  That will happen a lot faster inside the proofer than it will on the counter-top if your kitchen is cool but it still does require some time.

Try parking a thermometer inside the box and give it half an hour or so before checking the temperature.  That will tell you whether or not the proofer is heating properly.  The fact that mine has worked flawlessly so far (crosses fingers) doesn't mean that yours might not have a defect.  Note that lifting the lid lets all that nice warm air escape from the proofer.

Paul

Bread Head's picture
Bread Head

No the counter top was not warmer than 80F.

I use a starter and leaven not yeast.

I proof the dough for 1.5 hours.

I guess I am just expecting the bread to really get big and rise in the box.

wildman's picture
wildman

If you are only proofing for 1.5 hours you must not have read or understood the book very well. Without the Tartine Bread book to carefuly study the methods and techniques found within the book it is very unlikely you will be happy with the resulting bread. A proofing box is not the secret to sucessfully producing Tartine bread anymore than baking in a cast iron Dutch oven or a wild yeast culture that triples in volume in four hours. The only way the Tartine Bread book receipes work are through mastery of the methods and techniques covered in the book. Using these methods well are required to sucessfully produce Tartine style wild yeast breads. Adjustment and tweaking is a normal part of all cooking but you must use all of the techniues in the book to make it work as advertised. A stable and carefully maintained wild starter doesn't hurt either.

 

PMcCool's picture
PMcCool

If you are using a natural-yeast starter / leaven, then it probably won't be ready in just 1.5 hours, even at 80F, even if you have a hyperactive starter.  Those wild yeasts just don't grow nearly as fast as their commercially-farmed cousins.

And, wild or commercial, yeast can't tell time at all.  Just wait for the dough to expand to whatever is recommended (I don't have Robertson's book, so can't look up his process) before going to the next step. 

Paul

wildman's picture
wildman

Tartine basic country bread recipe from Tartine Bread. Chad calls for a 30-40 minute  autolyse after the initial coarse hand mixing of mature 50/50 unbleached white/whole wheat 100% hydration starter 700g of 80F water and one kilo mixture of 90% white/whole wheat of flour. Then add 20g sea salt and the last 50g warm water and a through mixing by hand. This takes about 50 minutes.

The recipe then calls for a three to four hour bulk rise at about 80F during which the dough is turned and folded several times. This takes about 4 hours give or take in a warm kitchen if all goes well.

Once the dough has achieved about a 30% increase in volume it  is time to divide the dough into two equal pieces and quickly shape the dough into tight rounds. Chad then instructs that the rounds should have a 20 to 30 minute covered bench rest before a final shaping and placement into a proofing basket. If the rounds do not hold their round shape at the edges and instead look more spread out and thin like pancake batter Chad says to create more tension by another bit of shaping before performing the final folding moves and shaping into rounds. While Chad did not specifically say so I would infer that if you need to shape the rounds again they will need another 20-30 minute bench rest before final folding, shaping and being placed into the proofing baskets. This section takes about 40 minutes to as long as 1 hour and 20 minutes.

Final rise or proofing time in the baskets depends entirely on how the dough behaves and just as with the bulk rise in a warm 80F kitchen will require three to four hours proofing time if all goes well.

I usually need about 9 or 10 hours to get the proofed loaves into the oven if all goes perfectly. Baking time is about 50 minutes with a 2 hour cooling period. You get two loaves of very tasty mild wild yeast bread in about 13 hours not counting the time required to maintain the starter culture. But pure levain breads do not get any better than this if you do it right. 

HTH!