Questions about kneading, baking, storing, and culinary use of any kind of bread.

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Techniques for making sourdough starter in cold/altitude

I want to try my hand at making sourdough starter but live in high altitude and cold weather. I'm not sure if the altitude is an issue but I don't think my house is warm enough on its own to allow a ...
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1answer
237 views

What happens with bread at >= 94˚C/201˚F? Or: Is temperature a reliable indicator of doneness?

So I baked a rye bread last night (in a bread pan). It was a new recipe for me and I had to adjust some things in it due to missing ingredients, so I could not fully rely on the time and temperature ...
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725 views

domestic bread steaming -> will my stone be okay?

Trying to maximise the oven rise of my loaf, and think I will try the steaming method, but what is the best way to do this in a domestic electric oven, and will could it damage my bread stone?
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Why and what kind of breads should be scored?

Inspired by this question How can I score wet bread dough more easily?, I am quite keen to know why and what kind of breads should be scored? What will happen if we don't score the breads?
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What is the secret to baking bread with a very fine crumb?

I've noticed bread purchased from the local baker always has a very fine crumb. How is this achieved??
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Why does bread with filling separate and how do I prevent it?

Sometimes when I make sausage kolaches or cinnamon rolls the bread layers pull away from the sausage or the filling and leave an open space inside. The separation is cosmetically unattractive, and can ...
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How can I create steam in a normal oven to promote bread oven spring?

Oven spring and a crisp crust on bread are largely due to high heat and high humidity. Commercial bakery ovens have steam injectors. How can I replicate this high humidity environment in my home ...
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4answers
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Yeast Aftertaste

When trying to bake white bread, I use yeast to make it rise. The problem is that I always get a sour yeast taste with my bread. How do I avoid this "sour bread" effect?
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What to do about yeast that doesn't work?

I am using a new container of yeast from the store; I keep it well-sealed (it's a small jar) and refrigerated. I make sure to use warm water in bread recipes - I check the temperature using a ...
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1answer
319 views

How does halving a bread recipe impact rising time?

I'd like to try an English Muffin Bread recipe, which makes two loaves, but I only have one pan. I assume that I can simply cut the ingredients in half, but the one thing I'm unsure of is rising time. ...
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2answers
880 views

How careful do you have to be with adding flour for kneading?

When you're working a dough (kneading or rolling out), instructions often say to flour the surface you're working on and your rolling pin or hands. This helps the dough to stick less. However, I ...
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2answers
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What happens during a cold fermentation that makes bread taste so good?

Many techniques for bread highlight a long cold fermentation. I've read that this gives enzymes more time to work and it contributes to a more 'complex' flavor. What do the enzymes do and why don't ...
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1answer
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What is the purpose of oil or butter in bread?

Specifically in wheat and potato breads, what is the purpose of adding oil or butter to the dough? I have always assumed it was just for flavor, but I suspect there is some background chemical ...
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2answers
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Techniques for mixing bread dough with stand mixer

Can anyone tell me what the best technique is for using a stand mixer to make bread dough? I just got a stand mixer with a dough hook and have started using it for mixing and kneading bread dough. ...
7
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1answer
2k views

Kneading before or after rising?

I've found a pita bread recipe (that turned out well) that indicates to knead after rising the dough (for about 3 hours). What's the difference between kneading before or after rising? It's even ...
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1answer
189 views

Should any liquid, or liquid-like ingredient, be included in the water proportion calculations for bread?

So I am just beginning on my bread making adventures and have been studying the concept of water to flour proportions for baking bread. My question is about experimenting with other types of ...
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2answers
223 views

When is the best time to use my sourdough starter?

When I feed my sourdough starter and leave it out to make bread, it reaches max size in about 6 or 7 hours, then it begins to fall back. Is this the point at which I should make bread in order to get ...
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3answers
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What defines a bread as 'artisan'?

'Artisan' is a term thrown around a lot right now in the bread world. What defines something as an 'artisan' bread? Is it a function of the recipe, the technique, or the person? Note, I'm not ...
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2answers
488 views

How can I make this very low hydration bread more home baker friendly?

The recipe is something like that: 400g of flour 180g of water 2g of yeast 7g of salt Part of the flour and water can be used to prepare a biga or a poolish, let's ignore that to keep it simple. ...
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1answer
522 views

What can I do with a failed bread?

So I attempted my first loaf of bread tonight and I blew it. It's flat and way wide (I tried a free pan loaf). It's about 2 inches tall and very spongy. It has roughly the consistency of a corn ...
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843 views

What type of flour should I feed my starter with?

Different sites recommend different flours for the feeding of my established starter, so I suspect it depends on the purpose, but I can't find a definitive answer. Should I be using the flour I plan ...
7
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2answers
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yeast subtitution in a recipe with no water

I have found this recipe, but I want to use dry active yeast, rather than easy blend. My question is can I proof (right word?) the yeast in the milk? and how much should I use?
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1answer
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How do I modify sourdough recipes for use with my small starter?

I have a 125% hydration starter that I got from some chef friends of mine, but I've been instructed that if I care for it properly I should be using no more than 90g of starter from the base culture ...
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1answer
460 views

How to ship bread or bread dough?

I've been thinking about starting a boutique mail order dinner roll business. Dough While I'd really like to ship dough and allow customers to bake (per roll) at their leisure, I'm beginning to think ...
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4answers
318 views

How should I incorporate oil into focaccia?

Last weekend, I tried making focaccia for the first time. I tried two recipes at once, the one from The Bread Baker's Apprentice and a traditional Genovese focaccia recipe modified for quick-rise (I ...
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2answers
319 views

What characteristics should a bread peel have?

A peel is the utensil used to transfer loaves into the oven: Image source: Wikipedia I've done a couple of them using some wood boards I had on hand. I made them for a home electric oven. But now I'm ...
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How do I prevent burning the bottom of the bread when cooking over a campfire?

Over the weekend I took my dutch oven and tried to bake bread over the campfire. I had two problems, one was getting enough heat. That is really my problem and I just lowered the grate over the fire ...
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3answers
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Is bread that can go mouldy better than that which does not?

I've recently moved from Holland to the UK, and one thing I've been noticing is that the available bread here (which I feel is highly inferior to Dutch bread) does not go mouldy. When left in the ...
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729 views

How to get uniform slices from bread?

We make bread for sandwiches a few times a week, but slicing them is always a pain. The pieces just don't come out uniform. I end up with angled pieces as the knife doesn't end up going straight ...
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2answers
548 views

Baker's Math Formula System - Why Isn't the Flour Mass in Corn Bread Formula 100%?

I am currently in the middle of a challenge to bake every formula in the Bread Baker's Apprentice book (BBA). This book describes a principal called the Baker's Math Formula System where all ...
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3answers
412 views

What's the difference in baking bread in a loaf pan vs. in a Dutch oven?

When I bake bread, I always use my loaf pan (something like this). Recently, I've seen some people who bake bread in a Dutch oven (or something similar). Why is this? What are the differences between ...
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3answers
25k views

How to convert a recipe calling for active dry yeast into rapid rise yeast?

I have a recipe for rolls where the first stage calls for 2 packages active dry yeast, 1 tbsp sugar, and 1/2 cup warm water to be mixed until the yeast is proofed, and then 1/4 cup cubed butter is ...
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Toast bread slices in a convection microwave?

Does a convection microwave make decent toast, as a toaster oven would or a bone fide oven set to broil? I have read far and wide on the internet and in operating manuals for Sharp, Bosch, etc. ...
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Where can I buy American style bread flour in Europe

I live in Germany, and all the flour here is made from soft winter wheat. I can get some durum semolina imported from Italy and sold as "hardwheat flour" (Hartweizenmehl), and that's about it. But ...
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4answers
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How do I feed a sourdough starter?

The cookbook I'm using tells me how to make a sourdough starter, but not how to feed it after I take out what I need for the bread. What do I do with the starter once I've used some? I don't think ...
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2answers
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Cinnamon Roll Filling

There seem to exist two different camps of people when it comes to cinnamon rolls and their filling. Some say to use regular granulated sugar, cinnamon, and butter while the opposing view states that ...
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How can I rescue overproofed bread?

If I make a loaf and slow proof it in the refrigerator, I find that sometimes it will collapse in the middle. I know this is happening because there is a large air pocket in the cling film above the ...
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2answers
634 views

Can I bake bread with long-life milk?

My normal breadmaker recipe uses milk as the main liquid ingredient. Normally I use fresh semi-skimmed milk for this and get great results. However, at the moment I only have "long-life" (UHT ...
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1answer
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What makes bread mold grow; light, air or both?

I'm building a breadbox that will hold multiple loaves of bread. I was wondering if it would be a good idea to put a gasket around the lid to reduce air infiltration but I don't know what is more ...
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1answer
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Why is butter incorporated into the dough last when making Brioche?

I made Brioche for the first time tonight using the Rich Man's Brioche recipe from Reinhart's Bread Baker's Apprentice. The recipe basically leaves out the butter until the very end when the dough is ...
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2answers
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How should I clean, or care for, a banneton (brotform, proofing basket)?

How should I care for a rattan (cane) banneton? It would seem that washing it in water would eventually warp or ruin the basket since the wood can easily absorb moisture. I've seen people suggest ...
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2answers
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How accurate is the window pane test? (breadmaking)

I recently bought Michael Ruhlman's Ratio and started trying out baking. I knead my bread for about 10 to 15 minutes, but the window pane test (pulling a chunk of dough so that it's translucent ...
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2answers
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Dry milk in bread: purpose, and substitutions

I've been looking for a good 100% whole grain bread recipe that I like, and came across one that looks promising in the book Home Grown Whole Grains (pp. 152): 1 package active dry yeast 1 ...
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1answer
805 views

Why does baking bread in a closed pot make a good crust?

I just tried a recipe for bread that suggests baking it in the oven a casserole pot with a lid (Dutch oven?) Suddenly I have a loaf with a wonderful crust which I have never managed to do with an oven ...
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3answers
1k views

How do I keep the paddle of a bread machine from damaging the bread upon removal?

I love my bread machine. However when the bread is done baking, removing it from the machine breaks the bread where the paddle is. I know the paddle is embedded in the bread and it will break the ...
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3answers
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How can I keep my freshly baked loaf fresh until the next morning if I bake it at night?

I wwould like my bread to be fresh the next day when I bake it at night but I know you shouldn't cover your freshly baked bread as it will soften it. Can I leave it on the counter uncovered overnight? ...
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650 views

Baking bread with spelt flour, without using a bread pan

I ran out of "normal" wheat flour a few days ago, so I had to bake my bread with the closest thing - spelt flour. I noticed the dough was a lot stickier than when using wheat flour, and when baked, ...
6
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1answer
108 views

Can I add butter to yeast dough which has already risen?

I used yeast,water,milk,egg,sugar and flour in my dough. I forgot to put the butter the recipe called for. My dough has risen already. Can I add the butter after it has risen or can I make something ...
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2answers
6k views

Why add malt to bread?

Several bread recipes that I have been looking at recently call for rye malt. I know that malt is sweet but what other effect will malt have on a bread recipe?
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579 views

How should I adapt a recipe if using very new dried yeast versus slightly older dried yeast?

I make bread and pizza bases using "fast action" dried yeast (like this: http://www.sainsburys.co.uk/groceries/index.jsp?bmUID=1287396076254 ). My bread recipe calls for one sachet, my pizza dough ...