The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Puffed-up miche - too much oven spring?

scotgibson's picture
scotgibson

Puffed-up miche - too much oven spring?

I made the mixed-flour miche from Hamelman today, and the oddest thing happened -- it puffed up like a football in the oven.  It was very wide and flat (as usual) when I put it on the baking stone in a 450 degree oven (with steam).  Eventually, it became oval, instead of the half-moon profile it usually has.  Was this overproofed?  Any ideas?  

gavinc's picture
gavinc

Looks perfect to me. Great oven spring is when you proof to 85-90% of full proof, leaving a little for the oven spring and scoring to open up beautifully.

 

scotgibson's picture
scotgibson

Thanks, though I wasn't just fishing for compliments.  I tend to think of a miche as tending toward flatness, with a flat bottom for sure, like this:

 

Classic Miche

Maybe I'm being too rigid about the looks.   I haven't cut it yet, so it could be perfect inside. 

 

gavinc's picture
gavinc

Yes. Traditionally a Miche is flatter, but it still looks good and will eat well.

 

scotgibson's picture
scotgibson

OK, now I've cut into it, and it's clear why it puffed up so much:

 

 

Puffed up miche - cut

Still totally delicious though.  :)

Filomatic's picture
Filomatic

The same thing has happened to me with this recipe a couple times.  It's the one Hamelman recipe I've really failed with.  Yours looks very under-fermented.  The odd thing about mine, which have looked similar, is that it appeared over-fermented, unable to hold any shape.  I could barely get it into the oven.

I hope someone here has answers.

scotgibson's picture
scotgibson

Mine looked okay when I put it in the oven, or at least it looked how I expect this dough to look -- according to Hamelman it's meant to spread and be fairly flat.  I did forget to slash the top, which may have prevented this bubble.  

Your comment and the comment above by gavinc have been helpful to me in thinking about it -- I wonder if it was actually just a bit under-proofed.  I did proof it about 20 minutes less than usual, so it may have outgassed too much and too catastrophically in the oven, rather than developing more gently in the proofing basket.  And if I'd slashed it, some of the excess gas may have vented better.  

Regardless, despite the air bubble, the taste is wonderful, and the texture is great too -- custardy but firm enough to be toothsome and hold butter well.  I like the flavor of this mixed-flour miche (with some rye and some bread flour) better than the all 85% extraction wheat flour formula.