The Fresh Loaf

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Over-proofed, isn't it???

SunnyGail's picture

Over-proofed, isn't it???

Hello everyone,


Here is the bake of the day: Beautifully flat and deliciously over-proofed :-((


The glitch is that the dough temp was 6.6° when I took it out of the fridge after an overnight retard..As I pushed the bulk up to 55-60%, my guess is that it continued to proof slowly but surely in the fridge as the temp wasn’t cold enough to stop the fermentation...

Can anybody confirm my doubts?? Or maybe there’s something else that I have overlooked...


Thanks a lot for your feedback!


The recipe is the one I’ve been following for weeks now, with a few tweaks:


350g Strong white bread flour / Organic / 75%

150g Red Fife Anita’s organic / 25%

375g Water /75% (instead of 70%)

100g active sourdough starter  /20% / 50/50 Bread flour + Whole Wheat – Fed twice the day before

11g salt (about 2%)


Autolyse 1h RT 20° (instead of overnight)

Mix and rest 15mn

Gentle kneading

6h30 Bulk at 25° / 3 coil folds during the 3 first hours / Until vol*55-60%

I decided to use my oven as a proofing chamber, but at some point, the oven reached 37C for at least an hour before I noticed it..It didn’t seem to bother my dough very much though, it was still looking very much alive!

Shaping (really challenging ...)

30mn proofing at 23° then fridge for 15h

Baked in a Dutch oven at 240°C for 30 mn with the lid on + 3 ice cubes / then 15 mn without lid at 230°C


Here is a picture of my dough sample at the end of the bulk fermentation stage:


BernardH's picture

I had similar problems when I first tried proofing overnight in the fridge, so this discussion may be of interest: Other TFL members offered helpful comments.


SunnyGail's picture

Oh yes, really useful indeed! Thanks a lot :-)

Benito's picture

Nice bake, I’m guessing you’re in Canada as well based on your use of Anita’s Red Fife, so am I.

First of all your hydration is actually 77% rather than 75% assuming your levain is 100% hydration.  I’m going to hazard a guess that you didn’t build enough structure during bulk fermentation with only 3 folds and that is partially why your dough spread in the oven.  It might be a touch overfermented because of the time in the fridge when the temperature was too high but overall it isn’t badly overproofed, you did get a nice ear.

You could try it again making a couple of minor changes.  Get your fridge colder say 3ºC and measure that temperature with a glass of water on the shelf where the dough will sit to ensure it is a true 3ºC.  Also do another couple of sets of folds during the first half of bulk will also help build more structure in your dough so that it can hold up better while baking.

Pop large bubbles of trapped air during folds and pat down a bit during shaping to reduce some of the larger holes in the baked bread.


SunnyGail's picture

Benny thank you so much for your insight, it's so useful!!

I am indeed in Canada and have been struggling A LOT with the flours, trying to figure out what is what and how come all the flours here have a protein content of 13,30% !!??!! (I'm originally from France) - I just read your comment about the protein content of Canadian flours in my other post and I thank you very much for that as well, it's definitely very useful to know!

I was even thinking of posting a cry for help on TFL to all the Canadian members to see if it could be possible to gather in one post all the info we could have about Canadian flours specifically, but first I need to see if there is not such a post that does already exist...

The glass of water in the fridge is a great tip! So far I was putting a thermometer directly in the fridge but the temperature did not seem to be constant and the variations a bit too large to be trusted. I'll definitely do the glass strategy from now on!


You are absolutely right about the hydration, thank you for the reminder, I always forget the starter in the formula!


My next loaf is scheduled for tomorrow, I'll definitely implement the few changes you recommended!


Thank you again for your help :-)