The Poke Test - Give that ball of dough a firm poke with your finger. If the indentation fills back quickly, you're good to go. If it stays looking like a deep dimple, continue kneading.

I use the water and the whole wheat flour only. After kneading the dough for 15 minutes I poked it. The hole didn't fill up.

Is there a proper way to knead the dough which I may be missing?

This dough is supposed to be used for making Parathas and Chapatis.

  • 3
    You have to knead dough made with whole-wheat flour for longer than white flours. Keep going! Commented Apr 11, 2014 at 8:11
  • 1
    I have researched several paratha recipes, and they are fairly uniform in not mixing or kneading the dough for very long. They may not require a lot a of glutent development. Why do you think your dough needs to pass this test?
    – SAJ14SAJ
    Commented Apr 11, 2014 at 11:06
  • 1
    Gluten development (or lack of it) is not going to help with that. That is a factor of staling, and flat breads are going to stale quickly, especially if they are lean and not enriched (not loaded with fat, sugar, and so on).
    – SAJ14SAJ
    Commented Apr 11, 2014 at 11:11
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    Chewiness and structure. Ability to hold leavening from yeast.
    – SAJ14SAJ
    Commented Apr 11, 2014 at 11:51
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    I don't know about the length of chewing, but it would certainly have a chewier mouth feel.
    – SAJ14SAJ
    Commented Apr 11, 2014 at 12:28

1 Answer 1


The "spring back poke test" is a function of gluten content. Whole-wheat doughs have a hard time building gluten networks, because the sharp edges of the bran cut through the gluten strands as you knead. In general, you should never use more than 50% whole-wheat flour in a standard bread dough. Cook's Illustrated successfully increased that to 60% by soaking the whole-wheat flour in milk for at least 8 hours before making the dough, and using bread flour instead of all-purpose for the other 40%.

  • It's fascinating what happens at the microscopic level in everyday things!
    – cst1992
    Commented Mar 2, 2021 at 6:50

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