Hello fellow Sourdough enthusiasts,
I have a question for you. Yesterday and today I baked 2 loaves that were the same in many respects but exhibited a marked difference in oven spring. In outlining the differences between the two bakes I'm hoping to learn more about how to keep and possibly improve upon the spring in my second bake.
Firstly, here are the two side by side (Baked 24hrs apart):
The one on the right has a more open crumb, is higher and rounder on the top and not so bottom heavy. Also notice the 'Gringe' has opened up considerably more on loaf 2 (The one on the right).
Both were prepared from the Pane Fresca(1) recipe using Sourdom's Slash and Burn directions. Both were bulk fermented in a covered olive oil brushed stainless steel bowl and proofed in a wicker, lined baneton at room temp (no retarding). Oven was preheated for 45mins at 220C with a baking stone and reduced to 210C when bread was inserted along with half a cup of boiling water into a baking tray below the stone. Oven temps were verified by an oven thermometer and the water in the tray stayed around for the first 10 mins.
Now for the differences:
|Loaf 1||Loaf 2|
|Characteristics||Less oven spring, more 'sagged'||More open crumb, more oven spring|
|Bulk Fermentation||3.75hrs @ 20C, 64-67%H **||4.75 hrs @ 21C, 55-59%H|
|Proof||9hrs @ 16-19C, 64-68%H||9.75hrs @ 16-20C, 59-65%H|
|Flour||Kiala organic stone ground||Kiala organic stone ground|
|Water||Carbon filtered||Collected rain water (previous day)|
** During the BF time for Loaf 1, there was heavy rain (outside :o)
I also took a 63g sample of the dough of each just after mixing. Loaf 2 was baked just as the sample had doubled 14.5hrs (one hour earlier it was less than double) and at bake time the Loaf 1 sample was a bit over double in size.
One more difference Was that I held Loaf 2 at bulk fermentatin for one hour extra (with one extra fold) as an experiment. I also noticed that on the 3rd fold of Loaf 2 it was already much stiffer than Loaf 1 at the same stage.
So, here's the quiz:
Loaf 2 proofed slower (just doubled in 14.5 hrs vs over doubled in 12.75hrs) but was stiffer during BF. It had lower average humidity but similar temperatures (proofing was overnight so could not take intermediate temps). Loaf 2 also used rain water verses carbon filtered tap water and had one extra fold and hour rest during BF.
Which of those differences contributed most to the improved oven spring?
Although the starters for both were at similar growth and consistency, the starter for Loaf 2 was made with carbon filtered water and the starter for loaf 1 was made on tap water.
Here's some more pics:
and loaf 2: