Baking ( For bakers, would-be bakers, and fans and consumers of breads, pastries, cakes, pies, cookies, crackers, bagels, and other items commonly found in a bakery. Includes all methods of preparation, both conventional and not.

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Old 27-01-2004, 10:00 PM
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Default Proofing bread at home.

Some folks use a picnic cooler with a small light inside--40W.
Others have used a heating pad--use a rack to elevate the bottom of
the bowl above the pad--or use a light bulb again--then invert a box
or wrap/cover in towels and blankets.
I used to use my microwave--filled with quart jars of very hot water.

Lately I just let it go natural in my cool house, ~64 degrees.
It takes longer, but the bread tastes better!

Many if the current bread gurus are touting the longer, cooler rise
for making superior bread: more complex flavor elements need
longer rises and cooler temperatures to developed. Some even "retard"
bread development in the refrigerator overnight. See books by Peter
Nancy Silverton, Carol Field, and several others. I have tried it and it
really is the way to go. One can have a bread recipe going all the time if
there is room in the 'fridge! Just fold it down once per day. I made a
really good batch of pizza dough over a full week recently. When we finally
stretched it out and used it, I could not believe the great elasticity of
the dough---and the taste was the best!

Let us know what method you use and what the results are.


"Fred" wrote in message
. net...
I learned how bakers proof bread at the culinary school today. I had a
chance to use the big wet warm cabinet called a proofer. How do you do it
at home? Do you just wait longer in cooler temperatures or is there some
good way to produce the effects of a proofer in a home kitchen?

The Good Gourmet

  #32 (permalink)   Report Post  
Old 02-02-2004, 01:32 PM
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Default Proofing bread at home.

On Sun, 18 Jan 2004 14:54:00 -0700, Janet Bostwick wrote:

and nuttiness to the lean breads. There is no doubt that there is little to
be gained in a retail or commercial baking setting by retarding proof as it
is unlikely that you will be able to price up a loaf to reflect the lost
production time.

Well I worked in a retail bakery (13 outlets) and a small village type
bakery. All the sourdough was retarded for 24hrs. in the larger
operation. In the smaller one I would retard the final dough for up to
three days.

The consideration here was more one of cooler space/energy than production
time which is off-set somewhat by the shorter mixing times.

At home here I'm retarding the lean doughs for at least 36 hours, or
should I say 36 hours in the frig, then another 12 hours til bake off.
This is with 7-9lbs batches however. I think the trade off is frig
energy vs production time gained because I don't use a pre-ferment so
there is only one mix. It's just a drawn out straight-dough method without the
'punch downs'. One mix, one ferment, a long bench rest/proof,
rounding/rest/proof, shaping, a final proof and there ya go.

I think the quality of the bread is dramatically improved.

The longer you can keep that dough fermenting and still hold structure
and a final push the better the bread will be, no question at this end.

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Old 03-02-2004, 11:12 AM
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Default Proofing bread at home.

On Mon, 19 Jan 2004 00:24:31 -0500, Dee Randall wrote:

After I take it out of the refrigerator after
and overnight and warm it up, it might take all day to rise, ALWAYS too
darned lated to have bread even that day.

I have found two things that do this.

I'm using Instant yeast, if this comes in direct contact with cold
water slows things down a lot.

The other is adding the salt too soon after the yeast.

With sourdough, if my starter isn't active enough, it has to be
very active, the dough will just hang.

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