The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Focaccia Problem -- Pita pocket

chrisatola's picture
chrisatola

Focaccia Problem -- Pita pocket

Hey Folks,

I've inconsistently developed a problem and I'm not sure what to do to address it. Unfortunately I didn't take pictures, but will try to next time I bake.  The dough will separate during baking and basically make a huge pocket like a piece of pita bread.

The formula is for a sourdough focaccia using a 100% hydration starter. The formula came from the forums somewhere, but I wrote it down long ago and don't remember the thread any more.  At this point, there is also a good hance I have slightly modified it from its original.... The dough is about 70% hydration (don't have formula with me), and it ferments under refrigeration for about two days. Then I turn it out onto a table, stretch it to close to pan size, then put it on a sheet pan to proof for a few hours. Finally, I dimple it with my fingers, spray it with some olive oil, and sprinkle it with salt. Then bake. It often ends up making this big bubble, and as I said, ends up looking like pita.

Any suggestions?

Thanks,

Chris

suave's picture
suave

I imagine with a dough this wet dimpling has limited effect.  Or, perhaps, you need to apply more force when you do it.

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

that bubbles up is to divide and shape early knocking down (rolling out) without folding or reshaping.  How would this help?  I would suggest folding the dough half way thru the retarding or sometime  before flattening and shaping so that no large hollow can form.  Dimple deep almost to the pan.  

chrisatola's picture
chrisatola

Thanks for the suggestions; I'll give them a try!

mutantspace's picture
mutantspace

You really need to push your fingers into focaccia - I generally push right down with all  8 fingers about 16 5 min before bake and then pour/brush on brine (equal measure oil, water and sone salt which keeps it moist and lots of flavour - 

chrisatola's picture
chrisatola

for the suggestions. I will be baking italian herb focaccia and basil goat cheese focaccia tomorrow....I'll give these suggestions a shot! Thanks!

chrisatola's picture
chrisatola

I think the suggestions helped. I added a stretch and fold halfway through the cold fermentation. I also dimpled almost to the point of attacking the dough.  I got distracted and baked probably 5 minutes longer than I wanted, but the end product was pretty darn good. The photo appears a shade closer to dark brown/ black than it actually was...most of it was a nice caramel color (and I snacked on the ones that were too dark:)....)

Thanks for the help...I think it gives me some things to play with. 

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

Another thing you might try is either a bigger pan or less dough.  It looks a little bit high but hard to tell from this angle.  Rotating the pan half way thru the bake helps avoid the oven "hot spots."  X-Brown crust is my favourite. Albeit, any reason to cut into a fresh loaf is a good one! 

Attack, yes, that's what you do instead of rolling out. Good mind set!  Maybe crying out "attacke" or "focaccia!" beforehand (like foe-gotcha!)

chrisatola's picture
chrisatola

for the input. I also like the well done parts!  

I baked the bread in a standard full sized sheet pan. You're correct, it is taller than normal focaccia that I've bought, but I like it and get good feedback from customers so I think I'll keep that, if possible. I just don't want the big bubble. The suggestions appear to have helped.  Thanks!