The Fresh Loaf

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Help with recipe

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Erthn ovn's picture
Erthn ovn

Help with recipe

Just baked Jim laheys recipe for olive bread. recipe said 3 grams yeast which seemed like too much(I had tried another of his recipes that called for 1 gram yeast and it worked great) and it seems like it was. The yeast seems to have over proofed and died out somewhat and bread came out too flat and tastes like no sugar left in the dough. any ideas what I did wrong

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ars pistorica's picture
ars pistorica

Yes, the recipe also calls for, unwisely, no added salt.  It relies on the assumption that every reader will be using the exact same olives with, coincidentally, the exact amount of free salt to also contribute to the dough at a rate of approximately 2% of the flour weight.  From your description, it sounds like your own analsysis is correct:  the dough blew out, after the yeast exhausted its food source.

The additional dosage of yeast ensures the dough's carbon-dioxide production has sufficient force to overcome not only atmospheric pressure but also the greatly increased density, a result of the olives.  Bakers often forget that leaveners quite literally do as they say, dead-lift a mass of flour-and-water from a small, shambled mess into a swollen, beautifully-convex shape, deftly (and briefly) defying gravitational forces.  This is why enriched doughs contain twice to four times the amount of yeast.

It is important to know that doughs of the Lahey kind (short mix, long bulk fermentation) retain significantly less gas than stiffer doughs due to their lower viscosity, less developed gluten-network and decreased inoculant amount.  Carbon-dioxide production in yeast is positively correlated with temperature, and, at the desired dough temperature recommended by Lahey, yeast cells generate considerably lower CO2 amounts.

Try remaking the Lahey dough, but with the addition of 1.6% salt.

I hope this helps.

Erthn ovn's picture
Erthn ovn

Thanks ars Pistorica, Kinda new to bread making but triing to learn. Really appreciate the detailed answer, it does help a lot, did not realize density was a factor.

ars pistorica's picture
ars pistorica

Hello, Erthn ovn, welcome to bread-making!  But, when put against a bigger timeline, we are all new to bread-making! I guess I should ask, what sort of bread do you want to be making?