Bread not rising as expected.
Posted: 05 October 2011 01:48 PM   [ Ignore ]
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Hi!
I use the Bread Bible all the time now.  Nearly every weekend I make the Cinnamon Raisin Loaf for our family breakfast on Sunday.  The first rising goes great, but after putting the bread dough in the fridge as recommended in the recipe, the last rising is extremely slow and the dough never reaches to 1? inches above the loaf pan (I use a pyrex pan).
Last time, I thought it might rise better using the proof setting in my oven.  That helped a little but after over 1? hours it was obvious it wasn’t going to go any further.  I am very careful measuring the ingredients by weight.  What could be going wrong?  And what could I do differently?

Thanks!
Elaine

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Posted: 05 October 2011 03:15 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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EBell - 05 October 2011 04:48 PM

Hi!
I use the Bread Bible all the time now.  Nearly every weekend I make the Cinnamon Raisin Loaf for our family breakfast on Sunday.  The first rising goes great, but after putting the bread dough in the fridge as recommended in the recipe, the last rising is extremely slow and the dough never reaches to 1? inches above the loaf pan

Could be a number of reasons.  Is your gluten developed adequately?  Can you windowpane the dough?  Are you degassing the dough before proofing?  Might your pan be a bit larger than what Rose is calling for?  Could you be overproofing during the primary fermentation phase?  Are you using the fingertip test to determine fermentation/proofing times, or basing it solely on volume?

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Posted: 05 October 2011 08:06 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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I had not thought of windowpaning the dough.  Is that how you tell whether the gluten is adequately developed?  I should add that I use a Kitchenaid moxer.  Using that it is pretty easy to tell when the dough is not a shapeless mass in the bowl.  As to degassing, I thought I was supposed to keep as many much air in as possible, just work out the biggest air bubbles.  The pan is the correct size, though.

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Posted: 05 October 2011 09:20 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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EBell - 05 October 2011 11:06 PM

I had not thought of windowpaning the dough.  Is that how you tell whether the gluten is adequately developed?

Yes.  Dough can be a long way from optimal gluten development even once it achieves some coherence in the bowl.

As to degassing, I thought I was supposed to keep as many much air in as possible, just work out the biggest air bubbles.

I didn’t look at the recipe and it might well say that; many of them do.  Still, that’s usually something that’s applied to an artisan type loaf, not something you bake in a loaf pan where you’re not really after large holes.  One of the reasons we “punch down” the dough is to redistribute the yeast food so that they can keep producing CO2.


Edit:  Took a look at the recipe and she mentions “deflating and folding the dough”,  so there is some amount of degassing expected.  Still, she cautions the baker to “maintain as many of the air bubbles as possible.”  I think what she means here is don’t overdo it.  Even for the artisan types loaves, when you watch videos of the professionals, they still take a firm hand to the dough to eliminate large air bubbles.

Regardless, the first thing I’d check is your gluten development.  Rose calls for as much as 10 minutes on #4 in a KitchenAid, which is a pretty long time.  (KA says don’t go over 2, BTW)  If the dough is sticking to the bowl, then even that might not be enough.  That’s why a gluten window would be a good check on this progress.

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Posted: 06 October 2011 12:52 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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That makes sense.  I hadn’t been punching down the dough, just giving it that “business letter fold” after the first rising.

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Posted: 06 October 2011 05:15 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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It does sound like your yeast is running out of energy. As Charles points out the dough requires some work between rises. This is because yeast are not motile so they have to be pushed into contact with fresh food. Another possibility is temperature. If your refrigerator is too warm or too cold that will throw off the rising times so it is important to work more from volume than time. So too warm and the yeast is consuming too much. Too cold and the yeast is just not recovering. I would guess that the dough is spending too much time in the first rise.
As for gluten development. I like to put a pinch in my mouth. Some of the dough will dissolve away but in a fully developed dough a small ball of gluten will remain. Like a piece of chewing gum.

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Posted: 06 October 2011 10:06 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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EBell - 06 October 2011 03:52 AM

That makes sense.  I hadn’t been punching down the dough, just giving it that “business letter fold” after the first rising.

That’s fine.  Deflating the dough is part of the folding process, so a traditional “punch down” isn’t needed.  Also, note that folding isn’t a “business letter” fold.  When folding, all four sides get pulled towards the center, which isn’t the way a business letter is folded.

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Posted: 06 October 2011 09:09 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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Thanks for the help.  I will try it this weekend and see how I do.

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