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I used this Portuguese sweet bread recipe. The bread came out with a great crumb, great flavor, and a great crust. The problem is that the crust on the top separated from the crumb on the top of the bread:

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I followed the recipe. The only change I made was that I refrigerated the dough after the first rise and shaping for 12 hours and baked it the next morning after letting it warm to room temperature. Anyone?

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What caused it: it's gotta be gases from the yeast exhalations which are unable to escape the air-tight envelope of the crust layer. So they just build up in a bubble right under the surface. Cutting some of those large gashes or cross-hatches into the top of the bread before baking should break up the outer skin of the loaf to let some of that gas out without detaching the top of the bread.

  • I'd always wondered what the slashes on some breads were for. – JAB Feb 8 '17 at 22:18
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    I agree, but it is odd how the gasses formed one big bubble at the top crust and yet the rest of the crumb is fairly even and small. This is a low hydration high fat content bread which are not known for creating large crumb. Have you ever seen Brose with slash mark? – Amar Oesterly Feb 8 '17 at 22:43
  • @JAB Scoring (the more common name) is mainly meant to let the bread expand more easily and uniformly without cracks, by basically giving more surface area on the top. See cooking.stackexchange.com/questions/33098/… – Cascabel Feb 8 '17 at 22:49
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    @Amar Oesterly, I have no experience with Portugse sweet bread, or Brose (is that another name for it?) scoring. But I have seen the detachable crust phenom. on my own bread, and even to some extent on store-bought bread (esp. pseudo-rustic type w.w.). I see your point on why does all that CO2 just want to emanate right under crust, and there aren't giant caverns elsewher in the loaf. Speculating, but maybe dough exhales gently as the gas diffuses through the loaf on its way to the surface,..but hermetic skin keeps it in..? Wonder if that "off-recipe" stint in fridge hardened the crust – Lorel C. Feb 8 '17 at 23:20
  • Might there be effects from the way the loaf was shaped? – Cascabel Feb 9 '17 at 0:38

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