The Fresh Loaf

A Community of Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts.

Why can't I make fluffy sandwich rolls?

Chentelle's picture

Why can't I make fluffy sandwich rolls?

I have tried half a dozen or so recipes that claim to make fluffy sandwich rolls but they all come out hard crusted and dense.  Could reducing the salt in the recipes cause this?  We have to make lower sodium bread for health reasons so usually halve the salt in the recipes.  Any tips or recipes that have worked for you?

Just Loafin's picture
Just Loafin

If low gluten is the problem, you could supplement a bit of Vital Wheat Gluten to recover the structure... but let's not stick the cart ahead of the horse just yet. We need information!

Please post the complete recipe, along with equipment and techniques you utilize to get the bread from mix to the oven. There are realistically a whole bunch of steps along that path, and the failure of any of them can cause unwanted density and crust issues.

Which recipe did you find to be the closest in taste (assuming you tasted them even if they didn't come out looking very good)? Post that recipe, and let us help walk you through a finished product. It is much better to focus on perfecting one recipe then to run around with the shotgun approach. After all, you can try 10 recipes, but if the mistake is in your technique and/or dough handling, then you'll have 10 failures. Let's focus on just one...

- Keith

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

Hey, I was just making a loaf, sort of like normal, sd, water, some rye and whole spelt flour, just enough to add some flavor, whisk, wheat bread flour and 30 min just sitting there.... low and behold!  BANG!  Soft fluffy bread!  Didn't even get sticky!  What did I do?  It was rather firm, felt like the hydration of plain wheat at 65% hydration and completely non sticky!  Impossible!  I couldn't believe it myself... so manageable and silky... I started looking around for a culprit.  Who switched my dough?

So my suggestion:  Throw some spelt into that loaf!  (shotgun done smoking)  That'll soften things up.  Oh, and give it time to rise.  (Weather wise we are having a high at the moment. maybe that explains it.)

Now I have to explain a soft fluffy loaf to my husband.  Sorry dear, my american heritage got the best of me....


Dragonbones's picture

I doubt it's the salt. Make sure you're letting it rise the amount specified, and not just going by the clock. Give it longer if it needs it. Make sure your yeast is fresh, too, and don't work too much flour into the dough. Dough is sometimes supposed to be sticky or tacky. Those are the main procedural errors I used to make, resulting in problems similar to yours.

alconnell's picture

Milk tenderizes dough and is often used in softer breads.  But I agree you need to focus on technique too. 

ejm's picture

As Dragonbones suggested, there might be too much flour in the dough. If you are measuring with cup measures, make sure that you fluff the flour up in the bag (it does settle) and then spoon it into the cup measure. Add all but a half cup of flour to the dough. Similarly, if you are weighing the flour, put all but 60gm (~2oz) in the dough.

Then when kneading the dough, use some or all of the reserved flour on the board. (You don't have to use up all the flour!)

Some time ago, before I got a digital scale, I did some random testing of my volume measuring of flour and learned that I was a little heavy handed when measuring. Here is what I found:

According to the bags of flour I use: [...] ½ c unbleached allpurpose flour = 66 gm (on my old spring loaded scale: 70gm using 'fluff-spoon-level' OR 80gm using 'fluff-scoop-level' methods of putting unbleached allpurpose flour in the cup)


(The baking911 bread baking troubleshooting page might offer some ideas as well.)


althetrainer's picture

With this starter your rolls will be soft and fluffy like clouds.  You can use it to do sweet or savour bread.  My family loves it.

chiaoapple's picture

I second Mini Oven's comment about the spelt. On monday I broke open my bag of spelt (bob's red mill), added it to some "old dough", and ended up with this very airy loaf. (I used roughly 50% spelt and 50% AP flour). Seriously light and fluffy.

ques2008's picture

this was an interesting thread.  does spelt flour go by another name?  i'm sure we have some here in Montreal, but have not seen it in supermarket shelves.  is spelt flour a specialised type of flour that is sold only by wholesalers or organic farmers?


deblacksmith's picture

My son lives in Waterloo, ON (teaches at the University) and on a recent visit I saw spelt flour in the bulk suppy store there.  Look around a bit you should find it.  I don't think you should have a problem finding it in Canada, but not in a local supermarket.  

(Also brought back to North Carolina, 20 kg bag of local bread flour, 14 precent protein, haven't tried it yet.)  


Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

French or German names?


ques2008's picture

i'll check around.  maybe some flour wholesalers in the eastern townships and in the laurentians here in quebec sell it.  if not, then i'll have to call outlets in waterloo!

ejm's picture

From what I understand, spelt (Triticum aestivum var. spelta or is it Triticum spelta??) is an ancient form of wheat - a predecessor to modern wheat.

I found a list of synonyms for "spelt" by googling. Scroll down to "SYNONYM(S) :   Triticum aestivum L. var. spelta (L.) Fiori, Triticum spelta L." on the Multilingual Multiscript Plant Name Database: Sorting Triticum names ( There are names for spelt in several languages: Arabic, Danish, French, German, Greek, Italian, Turkish....