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Making large batches of dough

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  • Making large batches of dough

    ok - so I don't have a large enough bowl to hold 10kg of dough.

    So my question is, can you make it just on the bench?
    It should be fairly easy to mix & knead on the bench, but for proofing, does the dough need to be contained (i.e. in a bowl) for it to proof properly?

    Obviously - I could make 5x2kg batches of dough - in 5 smaller bowls
    but that sounds like 5 times the work and mess.

    -also-

    here's my recipe (scaled VPN)

    Flour 5523g
    Water 3590ml
    Salt 166g
    Yeast 22g
    (this will make a 9.3kg batch)

    Will I really need 22g of yeast?

    I'm planning on doing an overnight no-knead method, and then letting the dough balls proof in the fridge for about 10hrs before using.

    What do you guys do for big batches?

    cheers,
    Mitch.
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    My 2nd Build:
    Is here

  • #2
    Re: Making large batches of dough

    honestly, it seems like it would be impossible to properly work a 10kg batch on dough all at once on the bench but I'm thinking from a kneading perspective and if you're doing no-knead....
    but that's still an awfully big blob of dough! do take some pictures, won't you?

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Making large batches of dough

      I've done almost that amount (5000 grams of flour), but in 2 batches (2500 grams each). My Electrolux DLX has handled up to 3000 grams of flour in a single batch and that's about it's limit. So for me, mixing it up isn't an issue, but rising in the fridge can be a handful. I have 2 large tupperware containers for bulk rising. They normally have the tops popped by the end of the rise. I've been thinking of using a food grade 5 gallon bucket and hand kneading the 2 large dough balls together. I'm just not sure how much of an issue it will be getting all that dough out of the container.

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      • #4
        Re: Making large batches of dough

        I have a big plastic, food grade "tub" that looks like a plastic storage box - about 18 inches wide, 30 inches long and 8 inches deep that I make big batches in by hand. This is bread dough and not pizza! So I don't retard it which (along with your refrigerator size) would influence what will work for you. Making dough in a tub is pretty cool and tidy. I mix it, let it autolyze, knead it a bit, rest a few minutes and then fold a few times every 45 minutes for an hour and a half and it's ready to go. While I knead my pizza dough more up front and (especially with Caputo) form it early, I think that approach would work for conventional AP doughs.

        Good Luck!
        Jay

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Making large batches of dough

          Originally posted by texassourdough View Post
          I have a big plastic, food grade "tub" that looks like a plastic storage box
          That's a great idea!!
          I'll go to the local hardware store and get one.

          but how big do I need?

          since 1 cup (250ml volume) of flour weights 150g...

          That means the flour will take up around 10 litres of volume.. (9205ml)
          I'll estimate the same weight for the salt & yeast.. ~320ml
          and say 3600ml of water..

          means I need a container -at least- 14L in volume just for mixing...

          so 30L+ to allow for proofing area...

          So the rule of thumb is to treble the weight to get the volume required in litres...

          I think 45L to be safe
          Last edited by Mitchamus; 08-13-2009, 03:59 PM.
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          My 2nd Build:
          Is here

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Making large batches of dough

            Originally posted by splatgirl View Post
            honestly, it seems like it would be impossible to properly work a 10kg batch on dough all at once on the bench
            Challenge accepted!
            -------------------------------------------
            My 2nd Build:
            Is here

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Making large batches of dough

              Hey Mitch!

              That will be about 12 gallons. Getting pretty big there! But it will keep the mess in one place and that is very helpful. You know, I bet 8 to 10 gallons would work!

              Also... Splat may think 10kg can't be done on a bench. I haven't done that much but I would certainly not be afraid to try!

              Good Luck!
              Jay

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Making large batches of dough

                Originally posted by texassourdough View Post
                Hey Mitch!


                Also... Splat may think 10kg can't be done on a bench. I haven't done that much but I would certainly not be afraid to try!

                Good Luck!
                Jay
                maybe the difference between manpower and womanpower
                seriously, photos are a must!

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Making large batches of dough

                  Originally posted by texassourdough View Post
                  You know, I bet 8 to 10 gallons would work!
                  yeah - you're right, I might be able to get a 40L (10gal) bucket or tub,

                  I'll just have to wait and see what they have available in the target size....

                  I think as long as I get just over or around 30L I'll be fine, and with a lid will be handy.
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                  My 2nd Build:
                  Is here

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Making large batches of dough

                    Originally posted by splatgirl View Post
                    seriously, photos are a must!
                    I'll try and remember to take some.
                    -------------------------------------------
                    My 2nd Build:
                    Is here

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                    • #11
                      Re: Making large batches of dough

                      Be careful though Mitch!

                      Don't get it too hydrated or we may hear reports of a white slimey blob spreading across the outback of Australia!

                      Boy did I get the size of my dough tub wrong! It is about 20 inches by 14 by 7 and that is almost exactly on cubic foot or 28 liters. So it won't need to be very big! I got mine a a bakery supply store and it has a lid!

                      Good luck!
                      Jay

                      G

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Making large batches of dough

                        your local restaurant supply store will probably have a bucket/lid that big that's foodsafe, or you could source one online. Not that I think you'd grow an 11th toe or anything, but using plain old plastic storage bins or bags for food storage is ill-advised, at least according to the experts. Which is not to say I wouldn't/haven't done it on occasion.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Making large batches of dough

                          Originally posted by splatgirl View Post
                          your local restaurant supply store will probably have a bucket/lid that big that's foodsafe...
                          Yep - I'm going to check there first...
                          -------------------------------------------
                          My 2nd Build:
                          Is here

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                          • #14
                            Re: Making large batches of dough

                            Hi Mitch,
                            My parents went to Italy years ago and my uncle there has a brick oven that was big enough inside you could probably fit 3-4 people laying down in it. They used to mix thier dough in a large plywood box. I know it doesnt sound like the most sanitary thing, But no one ever got sick from it. Im sure as long as you have the arm power you can mix the BIG BATCHES. I also remember from when i was young my grandmother putting 10 lbs (4.5kg) of flour on the formica table and making a mountain out of it, then making hole in the middle to add her ingredients and kneading it from the middle out. It was pretty neat. Good luck, and I i can find the pictures of my uncle's oven I will post them.
                            Mark

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Making large batches of dough

                              I found this interesting article about mixing large quantities of dough by hand. It uses "stretching and folding" rather than your traditional heavy kneading. Sorta makes sense, because 100 years ago bakers didn't have mixers...

                              The article is here: Sourdough Home - Stretch and Fold - A Gentle Way To Develop Dough

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