The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Problem Storing Dough In Refrigerator

fairhavenranch's picture

Problem Storing Dough In Refrigerator

I am trying to store dough in the refrigerator as per the Artisan Bread in 5 cook book.  Every day the dough gets smaller and smaller and the loaves are rising less and less and are coming out gummy.  The first loaf on the first day is lovely but then the dough shrinks and the subsequent loaves are a disaster.  What am I doing wrong?

henchal's picture

I had the same problem.  I went back to my old methods becasue I wasn't satisfied with the performance of their recipes.

fairhavenranch's picture

What were your old methods, if you don't mind me asking?

swtgran's picture

I found the same thing to happen.  The remedy I use that seems to work out okay, is...  as the dough gets older, I just let it set out on the counter longer.  By the last loaf I let the shaped loaf rest about an hour and a half.  This was a suggestion of some one else on this forum and it has worked out very well.  I will have to say the oven spring has always been great.

 I have only made loaves of the recommended size, so far, and have never had any of my loaves come out gummy in the middle.  I am a little worried that when I try making a larger loaf I will encounter that problem.

HogieWan's picture

I've never read the book, but I would imagine you'll need more time to rise the longer the yeast stay in the fridge. The yeast will go dormant in cold temps, and the longer they are cold, the more of them "go to sleep" needing more time to wake up and get working again.

Remember - you make dough, the yeast make bread. Happy yeast = happy baker

subfuscpersona's picture

Here's what I think is happening...

The longer the dough is stored in the 'frig, the more acidic it gets. This has the effect of damaging the gluten strands in the dough, weakening them. The older the dough, the weaker the gluten.