The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Help! I accidentally baked my best loaf yet!

BreadRover's picture
BreadRover

Help! I accidentally baked my best loaf yet!

Hi Bakers!

Ive been baking sourdough for about 10 months now, and yesterday I accidentally made my best loaves yet. But I'm not sure why. I usually put my loaves in fridge overnight for 14 hours at 38 degrees. And they don't rise as much as I'd like, but they always taste great. 

This time the thermometer read 44° when I took them out in the morning, around hour 10. So I was shocked when they came out of the oven super high and beautiful and they tasted really good. I was convinced they'd be basically garbage when the thermometer read 44°; I thought that was way too high. 

i guess my question is: is it possible to proof for too long, too cold? Is 10 hours at 44° sub-optimal? Is longer proof not necessarily better? Is warmer better? I'm so confused.

I made a sesame semolina sourdough and then a regular sourdough. I could not believe how well they turned out. Would be happy to share recipe and method I stumbled upon. :) (yes this photo is my bread; I had to photograph it!)

Thanks for your guidance!

 

Floydm's picture
Floydm

I can relate to that feeling, for sure, and kicking myself for not paying more attention and taking more detailed notes. 

My hunch is you hit a sweet spot that was warm enough that the fermentation kept active and, 10 hours later, it was just right. Cooler you'd want to leave it longer, warmer less time.

Good luck!

BreadRover's picture
BreadRover

so I'll just do it again: 44° for 10 hours versus 38° colder for 12-15. i think you're right. I think I overproofed. Exciting stuff. I'm new to this forum and thrilled to discuss these things with "bread people". my non baker friends blink at me and smile, through mouthfuls of the bread I made them, while I wonder aloud and basically talk to myself about hydration/bulk fermentation scheduling/ inoculation/miche/etc. :) Thank you! 

Danni3ll3's picture
Danni3ll3

around 37F and my sweet spot for proofing is 10-12 hours. If I go over 12, my loaves don’t spring as much. 

BreadRover's picture
BreadRover

Aha! So I always have proofed between 12-15 hours! So just a tad less time! Very excited. Thank you so much.