The Fresh Loaf

A Community of Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts.

Nothing too exiciting here

Sugarowl's picture

Nothing too exiciting here

So I made a loaf of bread last week. I think I really need to knead longer and/or ferment longer. My starter seems to rise just fine, but even after several hours, the bread itself doesn't rise as much as with commercial yeast. My house is 76F. I would put it outside but our screens are torn and the squirrels would chomp on it.

For today's bake, I'm trying out a multigrain loaf for a possible upcoming community bake.

134g Bread Flour (25g in starter)

133g Whole Wheat Flour (25g in starter)

13g Rye flour

60g Oat Flour

60g Cornmeal

30g Malted milk powder

1 T Olive oil

8g Salt

100g Starter (50/50 water/flour mix)

Mix ins:

10g Sunflower seeds

20 grams Pecan pieces

20g Bulgar wheat


320g Liquid

         50g water in stater

        40g hot water for soaking the bulgar wheat

       200g hot apple cider for soaking the whole wheat

What I did:

Day 1: fed starter, left it out until puffy, then put it in the refrigerator overnight.

Day 2: Soaked the bulgar wheat and whole wheat for 2 hours. Bulgur had absorbed all its water. I mixed in everything but the mix-ins in my mixer until it formed a ball (about two-3 minutes). Let rest for 30 minutes, then mixed on low/medium for about 3 minutes then turned out onto table for hand kneading. Kneaded until  smooth-ish (see picture, probably kneaded more). Let rest for a bit (I don't know the exact time). then stretched it out and added mix-ins and did gentle stretching and folding to incorporate without tearing the dough. I realized at this point I had added too many pecans, but it didn't look like enough when I measured them out, hence the 20g instead of 10g pecans pieces.

Left out on  counter for 2 hours, shaped into a loaf, put into bread pan, then put in refrigerator at about 3:30pm.

Day 3: 7:30am Took pan out of refrigerator. At 11:57am it was noticeably bigger, so I preheated the oven to 325F (dark pan). Scored bread and put in cold oven. Oven came up to temp at 12:05pm. Started timer for 30 minutes.

Dough had a sandy feel while kneading, I might soak the cornmeal next time.


Pictures still to come, but I'm pretty sure I didn't knead it enough since that seems to by my self diagnosed problem with bread.


semolina_man's picture

High mass % of mix ins.   

Mix ins (seeds, et. al.) do not, themselves, "rise".  They detract from raising a loaf of equivalent total weight. 

Back down on the mix ins. 

pmccool's picture

so no big deal and no need to reduce them.

In general, your point is correct.  In this specific case, Sugarowl's dough has enough strength (66% wheat flours) to carry the load.


pmccool's picture

Especially when you're working with a new combination of flours, grains, and seeds.  You start with a “sounds good” number in mind and then adjust from there.  Your notion of soaking the cornmeal might be just the ticket for the next bake.  Or you could treat it as a porridge.  Lots of possibilities.

Looking forward to seeing the finished bread.


Sugarowl's picture

Thanks Paul. I'll try again after the holidays. I found a crumb shot of my bread and posted it on my blog yesterday, but I can't find the picture I took of the whole loaf. Yesterday I had to wait 3 hours for my bread to rise, so I think it definitely needed more rising time. I currently have cookies in the mixer, with muffins and biscotti waiting their turn. I seem to only get motivated at the last minute. I did enjoy the nuts and bulgur wheat, so I'll definitely include those again.