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Old 12-08-2008, 09:15 AM
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Default Overnight proofing

The schedule worked out for me to proof my shaped olive levain loaf overnight in the refrigerator -- after a nice bulk fermentation with two foldings. It's a light, active dough that had no problems rising. 20% KA general purpose, 60% whole wheat and 20% rye.

My question is whether you should put the loaf straight into the oven from the refrigerator, or let the chill go off it for an hour or so -- before baking?

Thanks for the input.
James
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Old 12-08-2008, 09:57 AM
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Default Re: Overnight proofing

James,

After far, far too many experiences trying to time retarded dough left out to warm with the temp of the hearth, I simply gave it up. Since then, I always take them straight from the fridge to the oven. Jeffrey Hamelman is very good on this point. I've never seen any difference at all between loaves still with the fridge chill on and those that have warmed up somewhat. As Hamelman puts it: what is the essential difference between 40 degree dough and 56 degree dough hitting a 500 F hearth? I've found it's so small that it's really inconsequential. Nancy Silverman champions the warm up the dough approach, but I've found that with a WFO it simply is not necessary.

Jim
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Old 12-08-2008, 10:05 AM
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Default Re: Overnight proofing

Hi Jim,

That makes a lot of sense. I decided to do this one in the conventional oven with one (not two) FB Stone at 440F. It's a little more dense that it might be -- so perhaps I will warm the loaf up for my electric oven and go straight from the refrigerator into my WFO.

I am still trying to work out optimal temperatures and bake times for the heartier sourdough breads. This one has a lot of whole wheat and rye, higher hydration and olives -- all that take more baking time -- but I didn't want to burn it. A longer bake a slightly lower temperature give a thicker, chewier crust.

Decisions, decisions.

Thanks again Jim!
James
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Old 12-08-2008, 05:12 PM
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Default Re: Overnight proofing

Quote:
Originally Posted by james View Post
Hi Jim,

It's a little more dense that it might be -- so perhaps I will warm the loaf up for my electric oven and go straight from the refrigerator into my WFO.

A longer bake a slightly lower temperature give a thicker, chewier crust.

Thanks again Jim!
James
James
I concur with Jim, we saw no difference in baking with the chill or without. As for the dense-ness of the loaf...with that much whole grain in the dough it would be fairly dense...the sharpness of the whole grains tend to tear the gluten and thus give you smaller, denser crumb. In the inside oven you can use the trick of lowering the oven temperature by about 25 degrees at the halfway point. That is about the temperature loss during baking in the WFO and then check internal temp when you smell it...not like a WFO loaf but...as I like to say...in a pinch!!!
Best
Dutch
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Old 12-08-2008, 06:33 PM
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Default Re: Overnight proofing

James,

Dutch is right on as usual. Doughs with a heavy concentration of whole grain will be denser, period. Because there's so much bran in them, the gluten is cut by the sharp edges, as Dutch says. Many of my students believe that the more whole grain, the better the bread. Umm, well, yes and no. I always use at least 50 per cent good, hard bread flour to lessen but not eliminate the gluten problem when using whole grains.

It would be worth looking into Reinhart's recent book, Whole Grain Breads. It's a real breakthrough in this area.

You're getting much better at docking/slashing. Being tentative with the knife never gives you the same volume.

Jim
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Old 12-08-2008, 07:09 PM
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Default Re: Overnight proofing

This is a little off the topic, but I am really proud of the kids. This is a pretty challenging loaf of bread, with a serious crust and pretty dense crumb, and a lot of whole wheat and rye flour. And our 10 year-old was munching on a piece doing her homework and said "can I have another piece of that great bread." How cool is that.

Take that Wonderbread. :-)

James
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Old 12-08-2008, 09:07 PM
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Default Re: Overnight proofing

Quote:
Originally Posted by james View Post
And our 10 year-old was munching on a piece doing her homework and said "can I have another piece of that great bread." How cool is that.

Take that Wonderbread. :-)

James
Right on! I'm proud of them too! We will have to do that with some of the adults around here I think. We have some people who have come to our market booth and asked "Don't you make any soft bread?"
Best
Dutch
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Old 12-09-2008, 02:13 AM
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Default Re: Overnight proofing

Still completely off topic here...

But when I was in Texas years and years ago, and I told them what Swiss bread is like (i.e. with the thick crisp crust on), they figured that it was because we in Switzerland were less "advanced" than people in the US. And from then on, any disagreement would include something along the lines of "you watch out, or I'll hit you over the head with a loaf of Swiss bread!"
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Old 12-10-2008, 10:35 AM
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Default Re: Overnight proofing

I remember when I wanted squishy bread because everyone in school had boloney sandwiches with white bread. I'm so glad my mother was firm in her resistance to the chemical junk. I'm so excited about making bread in the WFO. My regular oven's bread is great, but...
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Old 12-10-2008, 11:40 AM
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Default Re: Overnight proofing

The only white bread I ever ate growing up was my mom's homemade bread. She NEVER bought white bread except when we were going to feed the ducks at the pond- so white store bread was, and still is, "ducky bread". My kids probably eat ducky bread at college and think how wonderful it is... since I wouldn't ever buy it either!
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