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Freshly grind spelt bread not rising properly

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sonika's picture
sonika

Freshly grind spelt bread not rising properly

I have tried it three times so far and in all cases the dough doesn't rise well.
Most of the flour I used was from freshly milled spelt, mixed with small quantities of flour from other various seeds. The bread comes out like a brick no-matter how I alter the recipe.  This last time, the dough had a bit of a better rise, maybe because I mixed it with about 1.3 cups of store-bought all-purpose flour. The results still were not satisfactory. 
I have been baking bread at home for a while now and I doubt I might have a problem with dough consistency or moisture. 
I have used freshly ground spelt flour before as an addition, and I have noticed that it impacts the rise of the dough. Does this mean that there is no way to have a nicely risen loaf of bread made from 90-100% fresh milled spelt, or is there something that can be done about it?


Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

Are you using an overnight retard?  

AbeNW11's picture
AbeNW11

Have you tried adding a teaspoon of lemon juice into the ingredients?

sonika's picture
sonika

But today I added 1/4 tsp. of Vitamin C powder. It is rising right now, I hope it does something to it.
I also usually add 3/4 to 1 tbsp of pomegranate molasses.

AbeNW11's picture
AbeNW11

Can you describe the recipe and method you are using?

sonika's picture
sonika

I just purchased a kitchen flour mill and my goal is to make bread from at least 90% (to 100%) freshly ground spelt. 
I use a Zojirushi bread machine for 2 LB size loafs, and initially I have been using the basic recipes that came with it. They worked very well until I bought a flour mill and started to use around 80-90% freshly ground spelt flour. I have been trying to adapt the bread recipes that used to work for me by reducing the water quantity until I get the right dough consistency. 
I am on my fourth or fifth spelt flour trial right now and none of my loafs has risen well. These loafs taste and smell nice but they are very dense and look like bricks. 

In addition to the spelt flour, I have been playing around with small quantities (like 5%) of buckwheat and rye flours.
I also add:
2 tbsp of olve oil, for a nice crust
1 tbsp butter, for softness
2 tsp. salt
3 to 4 tbsp. sugar (don't know why but all the recipes in the manual call for it)
3/4 tbsp. pomegranate molasses (it has sugars, increases acidity and acts as an emulsifier also)
2.5 tsp. of dry yeast

This last trial, which is rising right now, I added about 1/4 tsp. of powdered vitamin C hoping it will help with the rise.

I have noticed that If I substitute a cup of the fresh spelt flour for 1 cup of store bought wheat flour, the rise of the dough starts to improve, but not a lot. I imagine that if I increase the store-bought all purpose wheat flour ratio to 2 cups or more, maybe it will solve my problems aesthetically, but it will beat the purpose for which I bought the mill in the first place.

The machine settings I am using right now work the dough for 15 minutes (If I decrease this part the dough has more tears). Than I have set about 36 min. prerise. A bit of padding it down and the second and final rise (It has the option of up to three rises) which lasts about 90 minutes. During these 90 minutes the bread rises only to about half the volume it is supposed to, and than it starts to bake. I have manually increased the final rise to see if it can rise more, but it does not. After that it bakes.


AbeNW11's picture
AbeNW11

90 main rising time is far too long for Spelt. 40min Max then bake. Will take a look at your recipe and get back to you later today or tomorrow. You might need to increase, not decrease, hydration. 

sonika's picture
sonika

If I increase hydration the dough comes to a sticky/mushy consistency which goes down as soon as the paddles of the bread machine place themselves in the baking position. I have tried it a few times before and it is not stable enough.

 

AbeNW11's picture
AbeNW11

And how many mls of water?

sonika's picture
sonika

About 300 ml. If I significantly increase the water ratio (say 50+ ml), the dough becomes sticky/mushy and when the bread machine paddles move into baking position the dough gets disturbed very easily and it falls fast. If I decrease the water ratio significantly, the consistency will be so hard that the machine will have trouble moving it around and make more noise than usual. 

AbeNW11's picture
AbeNW11

Will be easier. 

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

with 10% rye flour.  They might complement each other enough for you to get a nice dough.  It will ferment quickly so don't walk away from the dough once you add yeast.  

Try doing a 4 hr or overnight soaker (with the salt) on the spelt (like whole wheat) softening the bran.  Then add the rye and yeast, seeds and rest ingredients for a short bulk rise.  See what that does.  Don't let the spelt dough double for bulk or final rise before baking.  Spelt tends to be too stretchy to the point of weakening the gluten matrix and falling on itself.  It just doesn't know its limits. 

sonika's picture
sonika

Hi Mini Oven!
I have been adding a small percentage of rye (around 5-10%) to the dough I am complaining about. The only thing that seems to help it rise better is store bought flour. I am under the impression that the more I increase its ratio the better the rise. What upsets me is the fact that I started to make bread and grind my own flour to get away from store bought flour, and so far it seems like I will still have to use it.


Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

gluten development.   Are you using any soakers or retards?

sonika's picture
sonika

No I have not used anything of that kind. I have used for a few months some 50 year old sourdough but it didn't adjust well to my bread machine recipes so now I am using only dry yeast. In my reply to another post under this thread, I have described what I use and what I do.

Thank you very much for trying to help me.

AbeNW11's picture
AbeNW11

Spelt has a very quick proofing time. Allow it to rise too much and it will collapse. True for all ancient wheat grains. I'm doing a whole grain spelt right now on the quickest setting in the bread maker 1hr 38min for kneading, rising and baking. I'm having great success with agave syrup and a teaspoon of lemon juice. Make sure your yeast is OK by testing a few quarter teaspoon in a little warm water and some sugar. Well you've added the vitamin C and you say its doing OK. Let us know...

sonika's picture
sonika

My bread machine cycles and recipes consider it normal for the dough to rise three times. I am using settings with two dough rises so far. The first a short one and the second one about 90 minutes. Do you think I should eliminate the short pre-rise and shorten the 90 minute rise as well?

AbeNW11's picture
AbeNW11

15min knead, 40min rise tops, then bake on light crust. But you might need to adjust recipe too. See how this one goes then get back to me. We'll have a look through it and see what is going wrong. Moist probably tomorrow but you can always private message me. 

sonika's picture
sonika

I know from experience that 40 minutes are not enough for it to rise at desired levels. My problem is not that the dough falls down after too long of a rise, but it does not rise to the desired levels at all since I have started to use freshly ground spelt flour.