FSWY overnight brown repeated disasters
I have been reading this site for weeks and have really appreciated everyone’s wisdom. I’m sorry to ask about a topic that appears to have been done to death but I am at my wits end with this recipe. I have made it eight times and have gotten it to work exactly once. Today’s loaf is going straight into the compost.
I am new to sourdough but not bread. My starter is active and reliably doubles or more in 7-8h at 23C when fed 1:1:1. The Levain build for this bread is usually ready in 6h especially in my summer kitchen at 23-25C. My problem is the bulk fermentation. My first 5 loaves I assume were all overproofed as I followed Forkish’s timing. The dough was always very sticky and difficult to work with. After reading comments on this site I made the sixth with a four hour BF at 25C and then overnight in the fridge. The loaf had the classic signs of not a long enough fermentation. The seventh I let BF for 9h at 25C and woke up in the middle of the night to shape. It felt overfermented but after a 6h proof in the fridge it rose beautifully and the crumb was perfect. The only reason for the schedule was because I was making it for someone else. This last dough got 5h BF based on the tables that someone else had posted on this site and that it looked like BF was done with bubbles visible and it was jiggly. Dough was soft and sticky again. Proofed 14h in fridge but what I got was a flat loaf with no rise and dense inedible crumb. I have no idea what to do next.
I have made the Vermont sourdough recipe with great results (increased hydration to 80% with no handling issues) but this recipe even when poorly done tastes so much better. Where am I going wrong? I have read and watched dozens of videos and posts about how to know BF in complete but I clearly cannot figure it out.
thanks for reading, sorry it’s so long. I’m in tears and I have wasted yet another weekend on this