The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Determined to make a yeast-free chewy loaf of bread!

jvlin's picture

Determined to make a yeast-free chewy loaf of bread!

Hi! I am determined to make a yeast-free, chewy loaf of bread. My impression is that yeast-free breads typically get their rise from baking powder. Now, is it possible to do this while still keeping the loaf chewy? I typically add some vital wheat gluten, which helps with the chewiness, but it seems to become more dense that way. Is there some kind of medium where I can make it rise well with baking powder, but still use all that extra gluten to make it chewy?

Please give me your thoughts and opinions! Thank you.

clazar123's picture

Irish Soda Bread comes to mind.

Floydm's picture


Irish Soda Bread is good, as is beer bread, but quick breads and real bread are totally different beasts, IMO.   

DavidEF's picture

If you really want to get crazy experimental, and figure this thing out, how about this for a start: First, autolyse just your flour and water to give it a chance to absorb the moisture and begin gluten development. Make sure you're using a quality bread flour, not AP. Even with vital wheat gluten added, it's not the same. Mix it to a low hydration to give the (natural) gluten more strength. Salt strengthens the gluten too, so you could go ahead and add the salt to the autolyse, or just do it immediately after. Then, possibly add a tiny amount of buttermilk, vinegar and/or yogurt for a better flavor and an acidic environment. If you don't do that, at least add some more water to bring the hydration up to make a wetter final dough. Then, add some baking soda to react with the acid if you added any, and add the baking powder too, to make sure you've got plenty of rise. Finally, bake at a high temp, to get better gelatinization of the starches. The high temp is why you need a high hydration final dough. There are probably other things you could do, too. Just look around the site and see what other people are doing with their normal bread to get more chewiness, and try those things with your yeast-free bread. This sounds like an interesting experiment. Let us know how it turns out!