The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Which is better...

Lmw4's picture
Lmw4

Which is better...

Is there any  consensus on whether it’s better to hold back flour in a recipe till the dough feels right or to add the amount of flour given in the recipe and adding water as needed?  

Danni3ll3's picture
Danni3ll3

such as salt or prefermented flour is based on the flour amount, I hold back the water and add as needed. 

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

volume recipe that deals with cups.  They can be wonky in many ways depending on how the "cup" is filled and who's written the recipe.   Often the recipe will stipulate saving half to a cup of the flour to add while kneading. If you like kneading, then save a little of the recipe flour as bench flour to knead.  That way it is less likely to work in too much flour.  It can still happen.  I tend to convert the recipe into grams and compare the amounts checking the hydration, salt, yeast, and dough weight before mixing up the dough.  Then I tend to know what to expect.  I've run into a lot of crazy misprints and typos and they are easier to spot in weights.

Key is to let the flour hydrate and rest 10 to 30 minutes before working the dough after an initial mixing to moisten the flour.  This gives a more actual feel for the dough, then make adjustments with water.

 

Lmw4's picture
Lmw4

Thanks to you both.  This is very helpful!