The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

KA Flour, Unpredictable

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Diane's picture
Diane

KA Flour, Unpredictable

For decades, I have been using KA flour (AP, bread, WW, and rye) for all my bread baking. Given the time, I bake bread once a week.  SD and traditional. I have never experienced any dough problems with KA flour until this month. I know all about hydration,  water temperature, autoylyse, fold and stretch, window pane .... the whole gamut... My recent problems with the AP and bread flours are threefold: (1) very stringy dough (2) very slow rise and/or (3) mottled dough ball.  This past weekend, I used a combination AP + bread flour at my daughter's house (different flour bags) and the darn dough tore!

Just wondering if anyone else has noticed a change in the KA bread/AP flours recently?

Diane

wildman's picture
wildman

are very consistent and predicable which is why we tend to use KAF flours here for everything. I just recently went through nearly 75lbs. of various KAF flours in the last three weeks and all were purchased at three different stores and a bag of premium organic whole wheat that was in the freezer so long that it was two years past code. Mostly KAF AP, KAF unbleached bread, KAF unbleached white whole wheat and KAF premium organic whole wheat. No problems at all.

HTH!

 

 

Diane's picture
Diane

Wildman:  75 lbs. and your positive experiences weigh in a lot regarding KAF quality. My experience must be the exception, not the rule.

I have no idea why the recent KAF bags have given unsatisfactory performance. It occurred to me that I may have actually bought the KAF flour for my daughter, who doesn't have a convenient source where she lives, meaning the flour came from my location.  If that is the case, it might offer a plausible explanation --- perhaps the flour stayed too hot, too long on a truck delivery.  Who knows?  I sent an email blast to my students on Monday.  The college generates a class distribution list, so I can't inadvertently leave out a student's email address.  One student swore she didn't get my email. Turns out we found my email in her spam folder. Bizzare. Why would an "internal" email go into spam for only one student? Who knows?

Although I am not a professional baker, I am a seasoned, experienced bread baker; I know the handle and feel of the dough and how to tease out a fabulous flavor. I am sure, in this instance, the problem is the batch of flour.

I did write to KA, provided the date and scu numbers, and received a coupon.  We agree - GREAT customer relations!

Having said all this, I think I want to try other AP, bread, ww flours. My search begins ;-)

Diane

 

wildman's picture
wildman

use that much flour it was just the situation around here. We like to cook and I was in a bread experimentation mode and there was a need for 1,200 deserts for two charity events so we used some extra flour the last few weeks. But 10lbs a week would not be unusual here at our home. People like to eat at our house and we like to cook so it works out O.K.

 

wildman's picture
wildman

So what happened with your search for flour? Did you try some different brands of AP flour? How did they work, taste bake out?  I think you are in the USA but where are you located? There may be some people in your region with brand tips and experience with more regional brands. KAF flours are the same all over the country but this cuts both ways.

Curious !

 

Juergen Krauss's picture
Juergen Krauss

http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/30720/case-melting-dough

I live in the UK, so I don't have KA flours,

but it sounds like you both might have the same kind of trouble

wildman's picture
wildman

He is having an issue caused by major substitutions and changes made to a rye bread dough recipe and over mixing with a stand mixer. I have seen this collapsing dough problem with a 50lb. bag of Costco AP flour once but that flour may have been damaged by exposure to water as the paper bag was water stained on the bottom twelve inches and the bottom six inches of flour was a brick. When the flour started to not work I tossed the remaining flour and have not seen that problem since.

 

yy's picture
yy

I also use KA flour, and I have not noticed any quality problems lately. They have a great customer service department, so it might be worth it to give them a call.

wildman's picture
wildman

is reported as being a great help. I have not called but it sure can't hurt as much as repeated dough failures! Hope you find the answer!