The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Microwave proofing

qahtan's picture

Microwave proofing

Has any one put their bread/dough in the microwave
to proof/rise.
To me it doesn't have the time time to develop
flavour and texture like a like long slow rise.

I have on the odd occasion proofed in my convection
on the "Raising bread" cycle at 90F, but never for a few minutes IE :- 6 in microwave. curious, qahtan

bottleny's picture

Murakami Sachiko has her theory about it (otherwise she wouldn't be able to publish so many books about this).
Her explanation is here (Why can't I mix too much? Why does the dough ferment in microwave oven?)
(it's in Japanese. You can use this to translate the page;
underneath the URL entry, select the right one for Japanese to English. The translation is not good, but much better than using Google's.)

My Japanese is very poor, so I can't translate the words. It seems to me that the recipes she uses microwave fermentation are like dinner rolls (sweet bread or rich bread like croissant). The weight of flour is typically 100g, which can be double (but the fermentation time is still 30 sec per fermentation, while the time of warming the milk & butter doubles). At most triple may be applied. Besides, the amount of yeast used is much more than in regular recipes.

I'm not interested very much in Japanese-types of bread (savorier but not my type). This is popular in Japan because they like to make good use of microwave oven (due to the limited space in their kitchen). So many recipes of microwave-oven cooking (very convenient). Their lowest-end of microwave oven already can bake goods, just like regular toaster or small oven. But the highest temperature of baking is about 200 or 220C (at lest not so many model with 250C, I think).

Floydm's picture

I believe I've zapped a refrigerated loaf for 5 to 10 seconds a couple of times when I wanted to bake something first thing in the morning and didn't notice any ill effects, but I have not been daring enough to try anything more than that.

I'm in agreement with you that it seems like a bad idea, but I wouldn't rule out trying it again.

Ricardo's picture

likewise I tried for 30 seconds on defrost without any adverse effect to the contrary my dough and bread has risen much better and lighter airy holes at the end of baking

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

Seasons Greetings!


This tip just flew in:

Proofing Yeast Doughs
Yeast doughs that normally take an hour or more to rise at room temperature can be proofed in the microwave in about 15 minutes. Place the dough in a very large bowl and cover with plastic. Place an 8-ounce cup of water in the back of the microwave with the bowl of dough in the center, and set the power as low as possible (10 percent power). Heat for 3 minutes, then let the dough rest in the microwave for 3 minutes. Heat for 3 minutes longer, then let rest for 6 minutes. The dough will double in bulk.

Smo's picture

I'm trying this right now, to warm a refrigerated loaf.  I just used a very low power level (I tried level 1 of 10, but it was too slow for my liking, so I went up to 3) for about 5-10  minutes, stopping periodically to take my dough's temperature and move it around for more even warming.  Got most of it between 70 and 80 F and called it good.

It's rising right now, I'll know in a couple of hours how well it turned out, I suppose.  I'm pretty sure it'll work fine though, so this will probably become my regular method.