Dough/bread question from a frustrated amateur
(My apologies in advance for my poor command of baking terminology).
I'm having some trouble understanding why sometimes my some of breads puff up nicely, and at other times they do not, after I follow the exact same recipe for them each time I make them. For example, twice I've made a sesame seed bread that included some whole wheat flour. The first time it came out well (though perhaps a little too puffy), but the second time it barely rose at all. I followed the recipe as directed both times, and as the first time that bread was a success I did not include a dish with water in the over to help it rise and be less dense while baking. The same has been the case for another bread I've baked.
I know this is a very general question, but does anyone know why something like this would happen?
Thanks in advance for your help!