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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hope this is the right forum...<br><br>
I have made bread for about 20 years, with both sourdough and store bought yeast. But I have to confess...my bread is always dense and low. It rises, but never high in the pan.<br><br>
I remember when I was a kid, my mom's dough after the first rising, was always high above the bowl before she punched it down. Mine has never done that. It barely doubles in bulk. I give it enough time, I keep it warm...<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"><br><br>
Any tips?
 

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I've noticed my bread rises better when the dough is on the wetter side, so you might try making a wetter dough. Also in my experience, my bread rises better at room temperature than if it's too warm (sometimes when I'm in a hurry I use the warming drawer, but I never seem to get my best results that way.) And if you're making sourdough, you might want to make sure your starter is really active... Just some random thoughts; maybe something will click!
 

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It's hard to say, but my first guess would be that you're not kneading it enough. Even in a KitchenAid mixer, I have to knead my whole-grain sourdough for 10 or 15 minutes to fully develop the gluten. You should be able to grasp a chunk of it and pull it into a thin-ish sheet with your two hands before it rips. The sheet should look translucent, with little flecks of bran, etc. (See Laurel's Kitchen Bread Book for more details about this). THEN, the bread is ready to rise high, given a warm spot.<br><br>
I discovered this when working with a new sourdough culture. The first time, I was concerned about overkneading in the mixer, and I only kneaded for about 4 minutes, and ended up with a brick. The longer knead time I now use gives me a bread that is truly bakery worthy!
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
All good ideas...thanks for the tips! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/eat.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Eat">
 
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