The Fresh Loaf

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HELP! Sticky Pan Bread Crumb

foodslut's picture

HELP! Sticky Pan Bread Crumb

Haven't posted in a while, but need some advice, so sharing this over a number of forums for advice.

I've been finding my pan loaves are coming out tacky & sticky in the middle.  I don't encounter this problem with my free-form loaves.

Did a batch of my house bread (formula below), mixing a soupy "sponge" with some of the flour & placing the rest on top like a blanket.  I left it to ferment for about 3-4 hours at 18-20C/64-69F until the flour blanket started showing cracks from the sponge poking thru.  Mixed the dough & kneaded it for a few minutes, then left it @ room temp overnight (14-18C/57-64F).


After the ferment, I shaped the loaf and placed it in a heavy loaf pan to proof (~60 minutes @ 20-22C/68-72F) until it was about level with the top of the pan -- no, I didn't do the poke test :)

Into the oven at 450F for 55 minutes, where it's at 200F internal temp.  The sides of the bread felt a bit soft, so I took the loaf out of the pan, and left it in the oven for another 15 minutes.

Below are the results -- darkish crust (which I don't mind) and what the thermometer says is done, but still a tad sticky in the middle after cooling for 7 hours at room temperature.

Sticky Loaf Bread Crumb 1

Had this happen to a previous pan loaf, so I thought I'd bake it a bit longer to make sure it was cooked.  This loaf is better, but tackiness inside not down to zero.

All input appreciated - thanks in advance!


Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

also what was the final internal temp?  Just checking... 

So far the only thing I can think of is that some of the flour tossed over the sponge hydrated and hardened with exposure/time and formed an area of dense dough, just enough to be bothersome.  It didn't break apart during kneading. Try topping the sponge with just a small amount of flour and covering it to prevent drying.  What's the humidity at the time?

foodslut's picture

Sorry for the bad writing - I thought this would just be for my eyes only :)

Internal temp when I first pulled it out was 200F, but the sides felt a touch soft.  After the extra 15 minute bake (tented with aluminum folk to avoid even more darkening), it was more like 205F.

Never thought about the densified flour theory - whenever I do this, there's always a bit of hardened dough on the side of the bowl I have to scrape down hard.  Thanks for that.

pmccool's picture

If the malt is diastatic, then it is amazing that the crumb isn't downright gooey instead of gummy.  

If the malt is non-diastatic, then it and the rye may both contribute to the gumminess.

Either way, I'd cut the baking temperature and extend the baking time until the internal temperature was above 205F.  Except for the malt, that's essentially a lean dough and those tend to work better if baked to a higher internal temperature.


foodslut's picture

... for the greatly appreciated input/feedback!