The Fresh Loaf

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Struan question - hydration

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SDbaker's picture
SDbaker

Struan question - hydration

OK, today was my second bakathon..took a few days off work, woke up, made a double batch of banana bread in little pans (Great for giving away).  Then I worked on my sourdough and am letting it bulk ferment in the refrigerator, and finally got all of the ingredients for my first batch of Peter Reinhart's version of Struan.  Wow is it tasty - and to say it makes great toast is an understatement.  It doubled in my San Diego kitchen in 2/3 time (will have to work on that challenge by maybe chilling for a bit), and oven spring was very good. 

Problem: I needed two more cups of bread flour than the recipe called for just to get it to not-quite clear the bowl in my mixer.  I doubled the recipe and weighed everything except the salt, yeast, and rice.  The rice  was quite moist, but not enough to use 2 cups more flour.  Has anyone else experienced this?  It tastes awesome, just would like a bit more consistency in my measuring expectations.

Thanks!

SD Baker

Paddyscake's picture
Paddyscake

and this week Anadama from BBA. I know this is going to sound crazy but..I just started weighing instead of measuring my ingredients and everytime I have had to add a SUBSTANTIAL amount of flour. I had no problems at all when I measured. I have checked the accuracy of my scale with coins (as someone was so kind to post a while back) and it was right on the money. I made sure I tared and that I was measuring in the appropriate grams or ounces.

ShirleyT's picture
ShirleyT

I have made dozens of loaves of Struan bread for my family and friends and like you I found that I needed to add additional flour - lots of additional flour - to get the dough to clear the mixing bowl. Using 5 1/2 ounces of water and 15 ounces of bread flour plus a little more as needed - some days as much as 1/4 cup (I often add a few tablespoons of rye flour just for fun), results in a perfect loaf of bread. I reduced the amount of yeast to 2 1/4 teaspoons and even then the bread doubles in volume much faster than the recipe calls for.

Shirley

SDbaker's picture
SDbaker

I am glad I am not the only one - I doubled the recipe in BBA and started with 27 oz flour, but still added TWO more cups and it was still tacky.  Was reading an older thread about someone who ran into this problem when using BBA weights vice volumetric measurements.

 Something is telling me I still may have messed up part of the recipe, just cant figure out what.  My scale is accurate to .25 oz

My assumption was a linear increase in ingredients when doubling.  I know the math gets interesting when making huge batches, but this was only a double.

SD Baker

Paddyscake's picture
Paddyscake

The amount is about 6 Tablespoons if I remember correctly for a single batch. The dough, in my mind, felt sweet sticky rather than wet sticky. Do you know what I mean? I'm just wondering if some of the tackiness is due to the sugar content. Still, this doesn't explain the amount of extra flour we've had to add.

SDbaker's picture
SDbaker

The BBA recipe I followed used honey and brown sugar. I bet the molasses tastes great.  I see the idea of sweet-sticky, but the dough wasn't coming close to clearing the bottom of the KA mixer bowl until almost 2 cups.

SD Baker

Paddyscake's picture
Paddyscake

You are so right..the molasses is in the Anadama..sorry. In either case, I had to add 1 to 1 1/2 cups additional too.

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

It happend a few years ago (before Fresh Loaf) that I ran out of flour in the middle of mixing a recipe and that out in the middle of nowhere!  My choises were simple--- and that's when I  learned about high hydration dough (that it can be done) and letting the dough rest after mixing so the flour could absorb the moisture played a big role.  So here is my suggestion:  try letting the dough rest after the initial mixing before adding the extra flour, say maybe 15 or more minutes and see if that helps reduce additional amounts.  I know that molasses does make dough more viscous, often used like honey to pull a dry cookie dough together.    --Mini Oven

SDbaker's picture
SDbaker

I don't mind a high hydration dough  : )   But the dough hook didnt get any purchase until 1 extra cup, and didn't clear the botton very much until almost 2 cups.  I'd say it's me, but I measured like a chemistry student.

 SD Baker

Paddyscake's picture
Paddyscake

Mini..I'm going to try your suggestion and let it rest a bit before adding any additional flour. Do you think it would make any difference if I let it sit before or after kneading? Just wondering..Thanks

SDbaker's picture
SDbaker

.. I did a 15-20 minute autolyze for the struan recipe.  Still needed the extra 2 cups. .

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

should be made to the original recipe.  2 cups of flour is a lot of flour.  Thanks   --Mini Oven

SDbaker's picture
SDbaker

Just made french toast with Struan..Very Good.

 

colinwhipple's picture
colinwhipple

I just finished mixing and kneading, and I also had to add about 2 cups of flour.  I tried letting it rest for about 15 minutes before adding the additional, but saw no difference when I came back to it.

 

I am wondering how much bread I am going to end up with.  I don't have a 9x5 pan, and was originally planning on having 1 8.5x4.5 loaf and some rolls.  Now maybe I will have 2 8.5x4.5 loafs., or 1 and a couple of smallish boules.

 

Colin