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trouble pinching seams when forming a round loaf

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silke's picture
silke

trouble pinching seams when forming a round loaf

I have just started baking some breads at home. I have been really successful making "Levy's Real Jewish Rye Bread" from the Bread Bible and have been quite successful at it. It tastes just like the rye bread I grew up with in Germany. Here is my only problem. After giving the dough one business letter turn and letting it rise I am supposed to form a round loaf. This is where I struggle. I can't get rid of those seams from the business letter folding. If I try to pull the dough together into a ball, the seams at the bottom of the loaf won't hold together and spring back. Some of the seams extend up the sides. Help!!! What am I doing wrong?

silke 

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

or a floured draped bowl for your final rise, just park it, seams side up, there and let it rest 10 minutes.  Then try to pinch just the points together after it has rested and relaxed a bit.  It does pinch together better if any extra flour is gently brushed off the dough.   You can try again in another 10 minutes if that doesn't work.  After proofing when the dough gets turned over onto the parchment paper or peel (and placed into the oven), the seams should be on the bottom and hold together from the weight of the dough.  Hope that helps.  :)

Mini O

holds99's picture
holds99

Silke,

I too have made Rose Levy's Real Jewish Rye bread a number of times with very good results.  When I did it I used heavily floured, unlined willow bannetons for the rising.  If you have Rose's Bread Bible read pages 64 & 65 - Shaping A Round (Boule).  Mini Oven is right-on about the dough having to be relaxed.  For what it's worth, here's how I do it--- After dividing the dough and folding it (whatever Rose says to do) you will form it into boules.  Make sure it's room temp. and relaxed.  To form boules I use the tuck and turn-under method.  On a lightly floured board gently, using the outer edges of your hands, tuck under the opposing edges until the outer edges of your hands meet or nearly meet under the boule.  Then continue the process rotating the boule a quarter turn each time.  Continue this process for a few iterations until you have a nice smooth, round boule of dough.  Place it in your banneton seam side up (so it will be seam side down when you remove it from the banneton and place it onto the floured peal or whatever.  If you have any openings in the seam after it goes into the bannton do as Mini Oven says, after the dough relaxes simply pinch the seam(s) together tightly, to seal them.  Then follow the recipe from there on.  After you have practiced this techinque a few times it will become second nature.  There's a video posted on this site (Fresh Loaf) for Portugese Sweet Rolls, where, if I remember correctly, he demonstrates (albeit rather quickly) the method of shaping a boule.  Don't forget to score your boules before putting them into the oven.  Rose shows various scoring techniques on pages 80 & 81 (Bread Bible) Otherwise they may crack and become misshapen.  Keep practicing and good luck.

Howard

jkandell's picture
jkandell

Turn with one hand, tucking the bottom under with the other.  Use a textured surface like a cutting board.  Any "seams" can be tucked under.  You can also "slap" down the buttom a bit.  If your dough is so tough it won't bend at all, you might be kneading it too much or it is too dry.  Also try forming a boule loosly, letting relax for twenty minutes, then forming it with more force after relaxing.

mcs's picture
mcs

The technique that both of the above posters are describing is kind of the opposite of the 'pinch the top' method that is described in many books. As they describe, your hands tuck the seams underneath as one hand pins it against the countertop to seal it. In the shaping video which I should have done in a couple of days, I'll do it a little slower and show it from a countertop angle so you can see it easier. As MiniOven says, if you're going directly from shaping to a pan (parchment or whatever) as opposed to a banneton, the weight from the loaf holds it shut. Also, if you preshape into a boule, then place it seam down, it'll seal by the time you final shape it.

-Mark

http://thebackhomebakery.com

holds99's picture
holds99

Mark,

Re: your post.  I use bannetons for all my rustic bread (boules and ovals).  The method I described is what I use when using bannetons and it works well for me.  Like putting holes in bagels, there's more than one ways to do it.  It's a matter of preference. 

Look forward to seeing your video on boule shaping.

Howard

mcs's picture
mcs

I agree on your bagel analogy, and although I didn't explain it well (that's why I make videos instead of explaining it clearly like you do), I use the same shaping method as you for boules, regardless if the loaf is on a pan or in a banneton.

-Mark

http://thebackhomebakery.com

holds99's picture
holds99

Mark,

Thanks for your posting.  I watched your video on the sweet rolls and it was very well done.  As a matter of fact I posted a compliment to both you and your wife (cinematographer) for doing such a fine job.  You're right, a picture is worth a thousand words (Confucious???).  Good luck with the opening of your bakery.  You're doing what I always dreamed of doing, but never quite got around to it because of other projects.  From personal experience I know what a pain the zoning approval, permitting and inspection processes can be (I presume that's part of what's holding you up).  Anyway  hang in there and I was sincere when I said I look forward to your next video.

Howard