The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Shaping Cold Retarded Dough

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Song Of The Baker's picture
Song Of The Baker

Shaping Cold Retarded Dough

I am sure this topic has come up many times (as I have read many posts on the subject).

I am wondering if anyone has any updates or new information to share regarding shaping cold, freshly retarded dough from fridge.

In particular, I am baking a San Francisco type sourdough.  Last night I retarded the dough during bulk fermentation.  This morning I shaped the dough, then I plan to let it proof at room temp and then bake.

Ok, all I have to say is, shaping is not one of my strengths (especially oblong or batards), but the cold dough made the shaping SO much easier.  The only problem I noticed was that when trying to produce surface tension with the sliding back and forth motion on counter, the dough did not grab onto the counter as when shaping with room temp dough.  Perhaps I also used too much flour on the counter which made it much more slippery than usual.

Are there any benefits other than the above?  Any cons that anyone would like to add?  Is it necessary to proof up to room temp after the shaping?

John

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

you don't want much of any flour on your work surface to speak of.  But, the dough is so cold coming out of the fridge you can't get much surface tension on it anyway without tearing the dough.  It is best to let it warm up for an hour before shaping and getting the surface tension you want then let it proof to the volume required for the recipe o;  shape it before you retard it.  Either way works. 

Song Of The Baker's picture
Song Of The Baker

Thanks dabrownman.  I will try that next time.  Any thoughts on whether to retard in fridge after shaping or before shaping?

I will be posting soon photos and results of the loaf you helped me out on last night.

John