I'm new and having great problems getting my sourdough to rise rather than spread out. (From what I've seen elsewhere, it's a common problem.) Anyway, I think my problem may be in knowing for sure when the kneading of the dough should stop and the next stage begin.
I've tried using the "windowpane" test and it's never formed a proper windowpane regardless of whether I've kneaded by hand or machine or for 5 minutes or 25 minutes. Poking the dough always seems to get a hole that stays almost as soon as the dough is coming together.
I've learned to distrust the indications in recipes on how long to knead. No matter which time I've used, the results always seem to be a flat (Ciabatta-like) loaf and not a boule or French loaf.
The tast is always fine.
Can anyone offer advice on how to really make the tests for a fully-developed but not over-developed so that the gluten is broken up?