The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Making bread less crumby

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AbeNW11's picture
AbeNW11

Making bread less crumby

I had a Panasonic breadmaker which made excellent bread but had a short life. One day perfect loaves and next day refused to produce anything other than rocks no matter what I did. They blamed it on the flour and told me to add in a teaspoon of lemon juice but that helped only once then it went back to baking rocks. Other then that I did everything the same. Weighing all ingredients carefully, making sure the yeast was good, following the recipes exactly etc. Other people I see had the same problem. So I have recently invested in a lakelands breadmaker. Compact (unlike the panasonic), easy to use, good size for one person, bakes good bread. However it does produce a loaf which is more crumby. What can I add to this recipe to improve the quality...

 

300 ml water

1 tsp of quick action yeast

1 tsp sugar

1 tsp salt

320g flour

1 tbsp oil

 

The method is liquid at the bottom of the mixing bowl. Flour on top then separately on top of the flour you put salt and yeast. The machine does the rest.

 

adri's picture
adri

Just out of curiosity, how old was the panasanic one?

94% hydration + oil seems a bit wet to me. Might this be the reason?

AbeNW11's picture
AbeNW11

Hi Adri,

 

Sorry about that. Was typing the recipe off the top of my head. Just checked the manual. Should read:

 

180ml of Water.

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

What kind of test involves  "making sure the yeast is good?"

Quick action yeast should not be tested first, it is good for only one rise.   

56% hydration - ok for AP  could be a bit dry if using bread flour.  Try adding one Tbs at a time or upping water to 200g.

Better quality comes with slower fermentations and probably raising the hydration.  With a fast process like this one, it is important to have a good tasting flour.  As soon as the loaf is cooled, cut slices and freeze to thaw out later as it will stale in just one day.  Do not store loaf in the refrigerator for this promotes staling or gel crystallization  making for a crumbly crumb.  

What kind of oil is being used?   Maybe a switch to butter?   Try only one suggestion at a time taking notes on changes.

AbeNW11's picture
AbeNW11

What i've done with the yeast is sometimes before I put it in the breadmaker I test a little to make sure it's still got life in it incase i've been storing it incorrectly etc. On the odd occasion i've made the dough myself by constituting the yeast till it froths, knead by hand and use the breadmaker as an oven. My new breadmaker is good I just want a less crumby bread.

 

Thank you for all the advice. I'm going to try one at a time and see what happens. I've been using an olive oil for the bread as I do try healthiest options and I don't think the olive oil spoils the taste. Prefer oil to butter. I use only strong wholemeal flour and store the bread in plastic ziplock bags outside of the fridge.

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

Yes, you will need to raise the water amount.  

You also might want to try soaking the flour.  Combine the water and the flour in a bowl, stirring until all flour is moistened and let it sit a few hours before putting into the machine with the rest of the ingredients sprinkled on top.  

jcking's picture
jcking

Adding an egg white will help.

Jim

AbeNW11's picture
AbeNW11

Thank you all for the advice. Sunday's my day for baking for the week ahead. I'm gonna try some of your ideas and let you know. This is why I love baking. It's an artform.