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Volume III
February 22, 2013

Weekly Home / Cook'n & Eat'n

What Went Wrong with this Bread?!

By Sydney Hill

Mistakes happen. especially in the kitchen (sadly). I've been on a bread-making craze and have found this mistake thing to hold true with it as well. But as we have all heard, we can learn from our mistakes. They aren't for nothing! So when I found this chart in "Sourdough Cookery" pg. 12 about why your bread went wrong, (not just sourdough), I was thrilled! That way, when the bread doesn't come out perfectly (or comes out completely ruined), I know what to change. Hopefully this gets a close to perfect loaf next time.

Hopefully this will be helpful to you, as it was to me.

Problem Cause
Poor texture or color, low volume or heaviness Inferior flour, oven temp too low, over-rising, milk not scalded
Coarse texture or dry crumb Too much flour, under-kneading, over-rising, milk not scalded
Undesirable flavor Over-rising inferior yeast or flour, too much temp while rising, oven temp too low, under-baked
Bread won't rise Weak or inactive yeast, dissolving yeast in water that is too hot
Streaks through loaf Poor mixing, under-kneading, too much flour on board, top of dough drying before shaping, using greased hands to shape loaves
Uneven shape Too much dough for pan, improper molding or shaping, over-rising before baking, rising in a draft, pans touched in oven
Flat loaf that brown too quickly Yeast killed with hot water, under-rising of loaf, over-rising of load which falls in center before completely baked
Porous bread with pale crumbling crust Over-rising, too much flour, dough too stiff
Thick crust Over-rising, under-kneading oven temperature
Cracks in sides or top of crust Dough too stiff, under-kneading, uneven heat in baking, too rapid cooling in draft
Tough crust Inferior flour, too much salt, too much handling, needs more shortening
Pale crust Too little sugar, too much salt, drying of dough during rising, oven heat too low
Bulging Under-kneading dough not punched down before shaping, loaf molded without removing gas bubbles, over-rising.

Davenport, Rita. Sourdough Cookery. Tucson, Arizona: HPBooks, 1981. Print.

2 Breads Image:

Holey Bread:

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