The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

ANOTHER attempt at an open crumb

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MBaadsgaard's picture
MBaadsgaard

ANOTHER attempt at an open crumb

Maybe I should write a diary instead of all these posts!

So I have tried so many different things, and I am getting closer!

Turns out not to do much how I knead (or Autolyse), Underkneading did give irregular holes, but not very big.

What preferment also did very little for me, but I still like the taste I get with a poolish.

Amount and direction of heat was also of less concern, as long as I remembered to score the bread (which I forgot this time around)

What really seemed to do a difference was that I developed the gluten really well, had 75% hydration, and then did stretch and fold trying to catch bubbles. Not LARGE bubbles, just a little bit. I got this idea from breadcetera.com and Harold McGee's On Food and Cooking.

The gas from the yeast usually enlarges already existing bubbles, so if there are a few larger pockets, they will naturally stay relatively larger.

So whenever I did stretch and fold in the beginning, I made sure to stretch the dough well, and really fold it unto itself.

The dough was 600g AP flour, 15g oil, 2tsp kosher salt, 450g water, 2 pea-size bits of yeast. One in the poolish of 200g/200g flour/water, and one in before bulk fermentation.

Here is the result, baked at 275C for 30 min with baking stone for upper heat, baking steel for lower heat, and 2 bowls with lavarocks for steam.

I cut it a little early I admit..

I don't know if I can take it further, but I am happy that my experiments are finally paying off, now I can start trying to refine it.

Wingnut's picture
Wingnut

Lose the oil.

Cheers,

Wingnut

MBaadsgaard's picture
MBaadsgaard

Yea? Why?

Wingnut's picture
Wingnut

It's been my experience, little that it is, that once you introduce fat in the bread formula the finner the crumb becomes.

Cheers,

Wingnut

PS Mr McGee talks about how fat molecules effect on chains.

MBaadsgaard's picture
MBaadsgaard

Yea, true. I haven't noticed any effect on the crumb though, with this little fat added. I don't know if it has any effect, but I also add the fat in the last half of the kneading process. I have a slight feeling that, since fat has to coat gluten to stop it from developing, it does less shortening in already developed gluten.

Whereas, if you for example melt butter and mix it with milk, and use that as the wet part of your dough, the butter will be there to partially limit the gluten from the beginning.

WoodenSpoon's picture
WoodenSpoon

You will be hard pressed to get a nice open crumb with oily gluten strands. why you want to use it?

isand66's picture
isand66

I add olive oil to many of my sourdough formulas and in small amounts it adds a little flavor and I like the effect on the dough.  It has not had much if any effect on the crumb structure for me at least.  Those of you who read my posts usually notice the openness of my crumb.  That's my opinion for what it's worth.  If you want to get a better open crumb keep refining your dough handling and increase the hydration level a bit.

WoodenSpoon's picture
WoodenSpoon

I'll take back my previous comment. island makes great bread and if it works for him you can make it work for you. 

MBaadsgaard's picture
MBaadsgaard

Thankyou for the feedback. I always love feedback.