The Fresh Loaf

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Advice needed - please see pic of bread

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Theresse's picture
Theresse

Advice needed - please see pic of bread

Hi - actually I'm writing for two reasons here, only one being "artisan bread."

So I tried using a banneton and making my first boule (?) or non-sandwich bread ever.  The problem is that I used dough I'd put in the fridge a couple of days earlier.  I'd read I could do that.

How long is too long to keep in the fridge, and how long must one let it rest in room temp before it should be expected to rise?  Should it be kneaded and if so, when?  After it's no longer cold?

I took mine out of the fridge and I guess I expected it to rise (due to relatively warm air) faster than it did.  After an hour or two I kneaded it a bit, noticing the inside was still colder than the outside.  Then again, about a half-hour later.  I was supposed to be serving bread at a party so eventually I just decided to spray the banneton with water, sprinkle with flours and shake off the excess then I formed a decent-enough looking boule (I think that's the word anyway - sorry!) and then covered with a towel.  No real rising - maybe slightly - so I put it in the oven at 425 along with a dish of ice.  It did actually rise in the oven (!) and the bread seemed fine though had quite the tight crumb, maybe because it had been kneaded plenty before it ever went in the fridge plus after?  Besides I'd made it originally to be a sandwich bread (imitating Dave's Killer Bread with all the whole grains and seeds).

What do you think?  Was that all to be expected?  Here's a pic, after we'd cut into it.

isand66's picture
isand66

I bulk retard all of my dough.  Check out my posts on TFL or on my blog at www. Mookielovesbread.Wordpress.com

 

Theresse's picture
Theresse

Thanks isand66!

Grandpa Larry's picture
Grandpa Larry

I've kept dough in the fridge for up to a week and it just seems to get better and better. It needs to warm up for at least an hour before you can see much rise though.

I make pizza once a week. I make my (no knead) dough a day before and make enough so that there's sufficient left for a loaf or two.

Five cups of flour and two cups water. Sometimes substitute a cup of WW or semolina for the white. It's all good.

It's the only bread  for which I don't weigh ingredients, but my cups are aprox 5oz.

Theresse's picture
Theresse

That's a relief!  Actually I pulled the bread out today, having almost forgotten about it, and it was very flavorful as well as incredibly dense and moist.  I think I just wasn't being patient enough!!  Thank you.

DavidEF's picture
DavidEF

Was this a wild yeast bread, or commercial yeast? Different yeasts have different rising times, and also different reactions to cold. I find that when I retard my dough, it takes a good bit longer than normal to rise after coming out. You can help it a little by putting it in a warm(er) place, like a proofing box, or an oven with the light on.

Also, how much did you let it ferment before it went into the fridge? If little to none, it may take a few hours to get any noticeable rise after it comes out. Perhaps give it a little more time before putting it in the fridge, especially if you're expecting to be tight on time when you're ready to bake it.

Theresse's picture
Theresse

Thanks David.  It was commercial acitve dry yeast - Bob's Red Mill I think.  I kept putting it in warms spots including a couple of potentially too-warm spots and it just wasn't rising.  Eventually it began to a little but I just had to put it in cause people needed to eat it (risen or not!) and it rose fairly well in the oven actually.  I just don't know if it was enough and if I'd screwed up the bread somehow.  

I'd made a sponge which I let sit for about an hour (even if unnecessary, as I've since been told), and it mixed and kneaded in a borrowed DLX mixer plus I did some kneading by hand.  I let it rise in the big DLX bowl covered, twice, before punching it down and packing it away in the fridge (in a gallon ziplock bag).  It sat there for two days.  I think I gave the cold dough only a couple of hours to rise - possibly less - and it just required a bit longer than that.  I also may have made the mistake of over-kneading it when it wasn't rising.  I was trying to fold it over to get access to the coldest part on the inside and then sorta warm it with my hands as I kneaded but I could feel the difference in temperature (the center area was hard to get as warm as the exterior of the dough).  That's probably why the bread has a very tight crumb - cause I kneaded it maybe too much?  It's very moist but also very dense and chewy.  Incredibly good with cheese and soup. :)

pongze's picture
pongze

I'd say knead it enough the first time before bulk retarding in the fridge (if that's what your schedule is dictating).  Don't reknead after removing from the refrigerator.  Just degas and shape gently after it has warmed a bit.  If you reknead, that will knock out a lot of the little gas bubbles that are meant to expand when baked, giving you more rise and a lighter crumb. If you reknead, then you should let it rise again, assuming it's not overfermented already.

Just a quick review: your oven spring is dependent on two main actions, the expansion of the existing gas bubbles already produced by the yeast in the dough, and the rapid action of the yeast as they are heated before they die.

PS: pretty loaf, though!

Theresse's picture
Theresse

p.s. tonight I was cutting one of the last pieces off the loaf for my son and that sharp serrated knife you see in the background there sliced into my thumb really badly.  Oh my GOD that hurt!!!  I mean really hurt!  I have high pain tolerance so I was shocked by that.  It took a long time to stop the bleeding and hurting (didn't go in for stitches) but finally it stopped, knock on wood.  YOWZA.  I hate that knife now.  Damn missing emoticons...I could use a devil face right about now! 

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

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Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

May I ask how you cut it?  

May I make a suggestion?  

Lay the bread flat and cut between your board and your palm pressing down but all fingers bowed up (including thumb) out of the way.    Rotate the bread to cut thru thicker crusts and on the last cut, cut across the crumb to separate.