The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Can't get it right

salty's picture
salty

Can't get it right

I've tried the Overnight White Bread by Forkish three times, it never works. I weigh out my ingredients, I autolyse for 20-30 minutes, I follow his timelines for mixing, folds, etc., my dough temperature is 78F, I bulk ferment for 12 hours in an oven with the light on, I take it out, divide, and proof in bowl with well dusted towel, I wait 1 hour, my dough is still a soggy mess - i can't even do a poke test because the dough just pulls away on my finger.

i'm about to give up, i can't get it right and nothing is improving.

Abe's picture
Abe

If you're sticking to the recipe exactly and it never works then something needs to change. 

I suggest you make this an overday white bread and when the dough is aerated, billowy and blisters appear on the surface of the dough then proceed onto shaping.  The dough might not necessarily double and will definitely be quicker than the timings in the book. Better to err on slightly under than over. 

Another option would be to stick to it being an overnight dough but after the last stretch and fold refrigerate for 10-12 hours and then proceed with shaping and final proofing the next day. 

salty's picture
salty

what's an overday bread? it might not double and i won't know how long it will take? these are the only things i can measure...how many more times do i have to fail at this?

Abe's picture
Abe

So the levain build is overnight and the dough is started in the morning and go easy on the bulk ferment.  

Or follow the recipe as it is but then refrigerate after the last set of stretch and folds and continue with the shaping the next day. 

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

they are not a standardized as many have found out and some well insulated ovens can actually kill the yeast.  If it must be done, don't close the door completely and use a rolled oven mitt or wooden spoon to keep the door open.  Check on the dough temp regularly or check to see if the oven has a proof setting.

if dough is sticking to your finger when poking, wet with water or dust with flour first.  The dough does sound overproofed  at this point. 

Danni3ll3's picture
Danni3ll3

your dough is overproofed. That dough is meant to be left at about 68F overnight. Putting it in the oven with the light on definitely would speed the dough up and overproof it. My oven is at 82F with the door cracked open and around 110F with the door close. Those temps are far from what Forkish states. Find a cool spot and leave the dough there for the night. 

Filomatic's picture
Filomatic

I was pretty experienced when I bought FWSY.  I'm not a fan of his recipes.  Hamelman's Bread is a great book that almost invariably delivers the way it should recipe after recipe.  It's also well written, comprehensive, and has a ton of recipes, including a big rye section.