how do I get my dough to rise up instead of out?
Posted: 15 March 2008 06:07 PM   [ Ignore ]
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For the last few years, we have been trying to replicate my grandmother’s easter egg bread. the bread tastes similar to her’s, but it does not look the same. Her bread had a lot of holes inside and was very tall. (It is a free-form bread.) She didn’t use any special equipment- just formed the dough into the shape of a doll on the same pans that we now use. Her bread came so nice and tall, and ours just spreads out. We do get some holes, which is fine. My main concern is the height.
How can I get the dough to rise up instead of out? Am I not kneading the dough enough? or am I over-kneading? (she used to knead the dough by hand, and I use my KA. Could that make a difference?)
And should I not grease the pan? Would that help stop it from spreading?

Any advice and suggestions would be greatly appreciated. We have successfully made all of her cakes and pies, and would love to do the same with her bread.

Thank you, Chrissy

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Posted: 16 March 2008 05:34 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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Usually bread spreads out when the hydration percentage starts to get in the upper 60s low 70s.  You may need to reduce the amount of liquid or increase the amount of flour, but also shaping technique changes how bread rises.  If you don’t form enough surface tension on the dough to contain the rise, then it can also spread out, even at lower hydration levels.  Perhaps you could post the recipe for more input.

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Posted: 17 March 2008 09:09 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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thanks for your advice. 
the recipe is as follows:
6 eggs
1 pkg yeast (dissolved in a few tblsp of water)
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1 stick butter
5 cups flour

any suggestions are really appreciated!
thanks again!

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Posted: 18 March 2008 01:25 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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I did a bit of analysis of your recipe:

Flour:  100%
Water:  39.5%
Yeast:  1.3%
Salt:  0.2%
Fat:  16.5%

This is a brioche type bread, but the water, fat, and salt levels are much lower than a typical brioche (which normally must be baked in a pan of some type because it can’t hold its shape on its own).  I would normally say add a bit more flour, but your recipe seems like it should have enough to be able to hold its shape.  Have you tried chilling it before shaping?  That would firm up the butter and might make it easier to handle.  You would need to add about an extra hour to the rise if you chill it.  Also, what kind of flour are you using?  I would use unbleached all-purpose for a bread like this.

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Posted: 19 March 2008 10:28 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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thank you so much for calculating the percentages for me.
I use bleached all purpose flour.  Is unbleached flour better
for bread making? 

I let the dough rise in a bowl with a dishtowel over it,
then punch it down, shape it, then let it rise on the baking pan
(covered again with dishtowel)

So to chill it before shaping it, should I punch it down , then
put it in the fridge?  After an hour in the fridge, shape it,
and let it rise again covered with the dishtowel?

Thanks again for all of your help and advice.

chrissy

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Posted: 20 March 2008 11:42 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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Actually,  just changing to unbleached flour might take cake care of your problems.  It has more protein than bleached, and therefore develops more structure when kneaded.  As a general rule, use unbleached all-purpose or bread flour (which is unbleached) for bread making.

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Posted: 20 March 2008 11:53 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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wouldn’t that be great!
I will definitely use unbleached flour!

Thanks so much for your help! 
I really appreciate it! (and so will my family if the bread comes
like my grandmother’s!)

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Posted: 27 March 2008 10:10 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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Matthew-
just wanted to say thank you again for helping me out with the bread!
It came great!  it rose nice and high and was the closest to my
grandmother’s that we have had!
I really appreciate your advice! switching to unbleached did the trick!

Thanks again,
Chrissy

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Posted: 27 March 2008 11:41 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
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Oh good, I’m happy to hear that switching to unbleached worked!

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