The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Tin loaf not airy, too dense/wet

theonlyotherandrew's picture
theonlyotherandrew

Tin loaf not airy, too dense/wet

I'm trying to make a bread using a 1.75lb tin and I'm trying to narrow down the variables. My bread keeps coming out dense and not airy, the only holes are tiny holes.

Recipe I'm using is this:
1 packet of instant yeast
375ml water
550g king arthur's bread flour
1.5tsp salt

  • Kneading for ~8-10 minutes
  • rising for an hour and a half
  • punching down the dough
  • form a ball
  • put ball into the tin
  • wait 20 min
  • put in oven at 425 for 45 min

I've tried more and less yeast, more and less kneading, but it's all about the same.

Any suggestions? Thanks!

Gkarl's picture
Gkarl

i think you may not be giving enough time for the bread to ferment/proof.  Don’t go by time go by the activity of the dough. 

Ford's picture
Ford

I agree with Gkarl.  Also you could try additional water, your dough is 68% hydration -- try 70+.

Ford

wheatbeat's picture
wheatbeat

You definitely need to proof longer - I would start with 90 minutes. Another consideration is kneading time. If you want bigger holes and less dense of a crumb, you should consider cutting your kneading time in half and then doing 2 folds during your 1.5hr bulk fermentation.

theonlyotherandrew's picture
theonlyotherandrew

I'm still pretty new to bread making - what do you mean by 2 folds? Folding from like 45 degree angles into the center of the dough ball? I just made another bread, kneading for 10 min and letting it sit for ~90 min - it seemed like 2x the size, but maybe I'm a bad judge of size.  In any case, it had the same problem, tasty but still dense and not as airy as I'd like.
Thanks!

wheatbeat's picture
wheatbeat

Yes, folding is what many people refer to as punching down. I would not recommend actually 'punching' your dough. The way to develop gluten to its maximum potential is to stretch and then fold it. You can gently deflate the dough and then stretch one end and fold it completely over (not to the center). Then you take the other end and do the same thing. You have 4 ends to do this to. Each time you do that routine, it is a 'fold'.

If you still have a dense bread with a 90 minute proof, you can proof for even longer or there are some other variables that need to be addressed: One is the strength of your dough at the time you proof. That's another topic, but adding folds during bulk fermentation makes the bread "stronger" and it rises higher. Other variables are grain types, inclusions (nuts or seeds in the dough), proofing temperature, oven temperature, whether you used steam or not, and the list goes on and on. That's the challenge, beauty and art of baking!