Some questions

northwestsourdough's picture

I have been going over some of the discussions on this board and I find many things very interesting!
In one of the discussions on how to regulate the "sour" in sourdoughs..
I found some very interesting ideas on how you let the starter sour longer before making bread and how you can leave the dough ferment more after the kneading process but before forming your loaves.

Do you know how that would translate for the dough shaped and left in the fridge overnight? After I form my dough with a dough machine, I leave it in the bowl to proof for 6 - 8 hours. Then I form loaves, put them into proofing bowls, and let them sit 1/2 hour to 1 hour then I refrigerate them. Next morning they are warmed up for 1 - 3 hours and then baked. If I were to try a bread with a softer dough, and I wanted it to sit up higher during baking, how could I change my technique to do this? Am I making sense?

160 users have voted.


SourDom 2006 February 13


you could try a longish cold retard either during the first or second rise.
For example, instead of a proof at room temp, you could put the dough in the fridge after kneading/mixing; leave for 12-24 hours. Then you could shape as you currently are doing.
Alternatively you could extend the second cold proof. You don't necessarily need to warm the loaf again. You could put the shaped dough in the fridge for 12-24 hours, and bake from cold (sounds strange, but it works...)

You could try also try doing both of these. Let us know how you go.


northwestsourdough's picture
northwestsourdough 2006 February 17

[quote]you could try a longish cold retard either during the first or second rise[/quote]

(I don't know why it shows the quote tags)

Okay so I made a sponge of whole wheat bread with about 1/3 of it white flour. I let it sit overnight to proof. Next morning I added the rest of the flour,made loaves and I let one loaf rise and popped it into the oven after about 4 hours. It turned out really great and is already eaten! (I have nine children). However, I could tell the gluten was breaking down because it cracked horizontally along the whole side of the loaf and the dough was really sticky almost gluey. It still had a nice crumb, was holey and had a terrific sour flavor.
The second loaf I put into the refrigerator all day and took it out this evening to rise for about three hours so far. It looks like it will soon be ready to pop in the oven. So I will let you know how it comes out compared to the loaf I did not refrigerate. Thanks for the input and ideas,

Bill44's picture
Bill44 2006 February 17

I cant figure out the sour bit myself, I've made two loaves of identical recipe with different sour taste.
1. 12 hour sponge, 4 hour proof, shape, 4hour rise, bake, = realy nice sour taste.

2. 18 hour sponge, 4 hour proof, shape, 12 hours in fridge, 3/4 hour warm up, bake, = magic loaf (see my post) but hardly any sour taste.

Go figure?

northwestsourdough's picture
northwestsourdough 2006 February 18

and I believe it was the best tasting whole wheat bread I have ever made. My family was raving! Anyway, there were some issues. The bread didn't want to raise very well before I baked it. I went ahead and baked it and it was certainly underproofed as it burst the side of the loaf and cracked the whole side of it. The texture wasn't as open and holey as I usually get. My guess is that it needed much longer for the second proof or that the sponge was too depleted before I made up the loaves. Does this sound correct? I noticed when I mixed the rest of the flour into the sponge in the morning, that about two hours later the dough looked perfect. I let it sit longer though and at that point I probably overproofed it.

Post Reply

Already a member? Login