Mellow Bakers: Hamelman Bread

Bread Talk => How To's and Recipes => Topic started by: jefklak on March 02, 2012, 01:34:27 PM

Title: underproofing & retarding issues
Post by: jefklak on March 02, 2012, 01:34:27 PM
Right, so I did a second batch of Baguettes (,1268.0.html) hoping to improve on my first try (click on the link).

I did not improve anything except the crust (increasing baking time). Oh well, try again & again I guess?
My biggest problem was that after bulk fermentation in the fridge for up to 24 hours (work...), it did rise nicely, but getting it to room temperature took way too long. Shaping didn't go well at all and final proofing neighter.

The dough was very flat and didn't resist at all while shaping. It was very hard to work with.
It looked like this: (sorry for the colors, wrong setting)


After baking:



What are the possible causes? Did I bulk ferment it too long? (It didn't collapse, so I don't think so)
I left it on the counter for 2,5hours after the fridge and final proofing was 2 hours - I didn't have more time that evening, they *had* to be baked. Maybe it should take up to 4 hours? They didn't rise at all during proofing...

I seem to have a lot trouble with over or under proofing. I did a lot of finger poking but couldn't tell the difference... Any thoughts?  :doh:
Title: Re: underproofing & retarding issues
Post by: Paul on March 03, 2012, 05:35:24 PM
Off the top of my head, it sounds like your long bulk proof, even in the fridge, went past the point you needed. Adding another couple of hours to warm up then two plus more to final proof was likely just the killer.

You would do well to give this one a few more goes but try to schedule the bakes for when you have a little more time.

Poke test: Underproofed, the dough remains very stiff so the indent comes back out pretty much totally and quickly. Overproofed, the dough has relaxed and softened too much so a poke will stay poked and not really refill.

Properly proofed dough has just enough "bounce" that it will have a little give, when you poke it will slowly fill back up about half way back.

Hope  this helps
Title: Re: underproofing & retarding issues
Post by: paulo on March 04, 2012, 03:10:01 AM
By the way, in addition to all that Paul said you're also trying to make BAGUETTES, which are the standard used to define if you're a good experienced baker. There's a lot going on in the shaping to get it right, but don't give up ;)
Title: Re: underproofing & retarding issues
Post by: jefklak on March 04, 2012, 05:33:32 AM
the dough has relaxed and softened too much so a poke will stay poked and not really refill.

That sounds familiar! So it was overproofed. Okay, that helps, thanks. I'm never sure whether it's over or underproofed. I did not give up and try another batch (with half of the ingredients, just as an experiment) yesterday, without the fridge. I still managed to get the same flat dough which was very difficult to handle (it was all loopy). I think I bulk fermented it for 2 hours which went good, and after shaping I had to do some shopping, which caused the final proofing to take 3 hours. Whoops.  :whistle:

I'll try to be a lot quicker next time. I always think I have loads of time because the book suggets proofing of 1 hour in 24°C and my kitchen now is 19-20°C so fermenting goes slower here. But I of course don't exactly know how much slower.

paulo: I do have the impression I'm being too rough on the dough while shaping, as it's nice and airy at first but when baking the result isn't. I think I degas it too much. Something else to note the next time. Great.
Title: Re: underproofing & retarding issues
Post by: charliez on March 04, 2012, 01:17:06 PM
Good second try Jeff.

I am also a beginner and decided to follow you in your quest for the baguette.

RIght now they are proofing after dividing, but my problem is that the dough
is very sticky.  Is yours sticky after bulk fermentation?

So I devided them and let them rest for 20 minutes and when I was going to
shape them, they were too sticky... so I added flour to be able to handle them.
Let se if I can score them easily and see how they come out.

I'll try to post pictures of the final product.  I divided the recipe in half and then
divided the dough in three smaller baguettes.

I think my problem is altitude.  Where I live is in the range of 2000-2100 meters high.
I already reduced hydration to 63% but still too sticky.  I guess I need HELP!! hehe
Title: Re: underproofing & retarding issues
Post by: jefklak on March 05, 2012, 07:11:42 AM
All right charliez, let's from some kind of "baguette order", who will design our logo?

I have to say that my dough was also *very* sticky. That's why the first try I added more flour (chicken!) but the next 2 tries I did not. Final proofing on a floured towel isn't great since a simple kitchen towel seems to completely swallow all flour and the baguettes still stick on it. I was unable to successfully transfer them onto the sheet pan...
I suppose a real baker's linen doesn't stick as much?

(I'm at 60m above sea level btw, I didn't know that affected the amount of water you have to put into the dough?)
Do post some pictures otherwise it looks like I'm the only spammer here :)