The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Hole in my family loaf

buckie10's picture

Hole in my family loaf

Hi All,

I was wondering if you would be able to help me with a recurrent problem in my family loaf. I adapted this from our favourite bread-maker recipe when I took the plunge to go to bigger, more sandwich friendly, hand (and stand mixer) made bread.

I've put my ingredients at the end but basically I put the dry goods in the Kenwood mixing bowl, combine the wet goods, make up the yeast and then add yeast and liquid to dry and kneed on 1-2 for 5 minutes.

After first rise I knock back in Chef on 1 for 1 minute. I then form by rolling out to 2xlength of tin, folding left and right in then folding front and back in. I proof it in my loaf tin till doubled in size and then into oven on 220C for 30 mins, remove from tin and bake until internal team is 87C.

The finished bread is lovely and my kids would rather have it than shop bought which makes me very happy :) Invariably though I get a big unsightly hole in the lower middle, sometimes there are issues near the crust too (see image for a fairly standard middle section through a loaf).

Any suggestions would be appreciated as it is driving me daft!

Many thanks,


Spelt and Bulgar Wheat Loaf

Strong White Flour 700g
White Spelt Flour 300g
Bulgar Wheat 90g
Salt 1tbs

Cold Water 290g
Yoghurt 290g
Lemon Juice 1tbs

Warm Water 150ml
Sugar 2tsp
Dry Yeast 2tbs

Maureen Farndell's picture
Maureen Farndell

Maybe an extra stretch and fold would help blend the dough and give you a more even crumb. Your method is very similar to my sourdough in some respects and I do 3 stretch and fold with no knock back - 1 rise and into the oven. Don't know if that helps - just an idea......


Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

Looks like air trapped while rolling up the dough, caught in a swirl.   Can happen when too much oil or flour is used to roll out the dough before shaping.  Try to use none or as little as possible, try not to use a whole flour (or sift out the bran first) and roll up tightly to avoid trapping air between the layers.  Try to avoid the left and right folds to the inside (mentioned in shaping) as they will also trap air making pockets.  Roll or pat out dough thicker and smaller or if you insist; fold one side, flip the dough over and fold the other creating a Z fold,  that way air can escape easier when rolling  dough into a log.

buckie10's picture


It's funny isn't it but you don't really think things out until you put them down for other people. Having written down for you what I do, I started thinking what advice you might give me and one of the things I've never done is try hand kneading vs my Kenwood. Also, I read your comment on the crumb structure Maureen and that made me think that something quite fundamental was wrong. So after I posted I did another loaf but after mixing/kneading in the Kenwood I gave it 5-10 minutes of hand kneading and it is clearly a different beast. Much stronger, behaves better in the rise, has a much bigger lift once it is in the oven - it is certainly very different to my Kenwood kneaded one.

I've just been reading that people don't much rate the standard dough hook - which is disappointing because I mainly got mine to help make bread as I'm quite squeezed for time, but if this is the difference than I'm going to set aside the time to knead. I've included a photo straight out of the over and it is noticeably less dense. I suspect I've been struggling because the gluten hasn't been building up enough.