The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

An ideas for leftover bread soaking water?

foodslut's picture

An ideas for leftover bread soaking water?

Part of my newer baking routine now is that I throw tiny left-over crusts of bread into a paper bag.

When I bake my next batch of bread, I soak the crusts, drain the water so it's pulpy, not mushy, and mix it into my dough (usually about 30-35% baker's percentage or so).  I find it adds another layer of flavour, but I was wondering:  anybody have any idea if I can use the pressed-and-drained-off water for anything?

If anybody would know, I figured it would be the keeners here.

Thanks, in advance, for your help.


Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

soaking and dumping excess liquid?  Why create excess?  (when you don't have to)  :)

Why not weigh the dried bread and add enough water to make end dough hydration? 

Example:  Take 100g dried crumbs and add 65g water to get 65% hydration for a end dough with a 65% hydration.  70g water for a 70% hydration dough and so on.  

Let the bread soak up the water either separately or in the starter or in dough liquids before making the dough.  No water or extra liquids to throw away.  Try a lidded container and shake or stand it upside down for part of the soaking.  

Think about the extra liquid; what "babies" are being thrown out with the "bathwater" when too much water is used to hydrate the dried bread?  Trace minerals and resistant starch, not to mention any leaked flavourings and possibly salt.   

Antilope's picture

on Chowhound about what to do with used hot dog water (the water you heat hot dogs in):

What do you do with "Hot Dog Water"?

foodslut's picture

.... hot dog gravy ....

Thanks for sharing that one!

foodslut's picture

.... and pretty easy to try - will give it a go next weekend, and pass along the results.

Thanks for that!

foodslut's picture

Mini Oven:  Tried your idea of matching the hydration of the dried bread crust soaker to that of the dough, but it wasn't nearly enough liquid to rehydrate the crusts enough.

What I do now is soak the crusts (fill a French press coffee maker with old crusts, with water about a finger above the crusts) for several hours.  I then compress the plunger to squeeze tasty liquid out of the crusts, pour off the liquid and add it to the dough as part of the overall liquid component.  The wet bread ends up getting added to the dry ingredients as usual.

Interesting having ZERO bread waste this way.