The bread I made

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Joined May 10, 2001
Well, I think I succeeded with the loaf I made yesterday. I am not sure it raised as much as it was supposed to in the oven but everyone liked it so it must have been okay.

I made m brown's recipe and I just made a big round loaf, I am not sure if that was what I was supposed to do but I think it worked.

I did go out and buy Ultimate Bread a DK book so it has lots of good pictures but the one thing I am wondering is some of you have said that sticky dough is okay and it shows dough that isn't very sticky at all.

We have a favorite italian resturaunt in town and they have little loaves of bread that come with the meal. They are so good but I am beginning to think they might come to them frozen and they just stick em in the oven. I wish I could make that!

I have learned a bunch from all of you.
Thanks!
Heidi
 
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Joined Mar 4, 2000
Heidi,

I'm happy to hear that your bread was a success. You can make mini loaves out of almost any kind of dough, as long as you have the mini loaf pans. Try another simple recipe, and gradually try more challenging ones. Eventually, you'll feel more confident, and you'll be able to produce breads EVEN BETTER than you imagined.
 
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Heidi:

I mentioned the distinction between sticky and tacky dough. The most common error that novice breadmakers make - including myself - is a dry loaf, too much flour. A dough that is slightly tacky probably won't be dry. Again, I achieved success by the 6'th or 7'th loaf.

Also, my hand kneaded dough never quite resembled the dough pictured in ULTIMATE BREAD. The dough kneaded by the Kitchen Aid certainly did. The dough looked really silky. Practise practise practise with only minor variations, you'll get it.

[ June 04, 2001: Message edited by: kokopuffs ]
 
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Heidi,
They are right, the more you practice the better you'll be at it. Remember, you can always eat your mistakes :D
 
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Joined Mar 13, 2001
I'm glad your bread turned out well-enough for you to be happy.

About the water: After you're more comfortable, experiment with more water. The rule of thumb calls for 6.3 pounds of water to every 10 pounds of flour. You can move up to 75 percent radio for some breads. The wetter the dough, the harder it is to work with. The dividend is a more irregular, chewy bread.

Repeat the same recipe: My teacher strongly recommended that beginners make the same bread repeatedly, toying with one variable at a time to see differences. In the end, you'll have a perfect loaf and a whole lot of learning.

Practice shaping: If you're cursed with ten thumbs, bread may taste and smell delicious, but it will never quite look right. Just keep making it; there's nothing to practice on but bread dough. If you've shaped a loaf and you don't like it, put it aside, let it rest for ten or fifteen minutes, then try again.

Buy a scale and a thermometer: A cup of flour scooped out of the bag tends to be compacted and weigh about 5.5 ounces, by King Arthur. It should weigh only 4 ounces. Especially in large recipes, that's the difference between a chewy loaf and a doorstop. To avert that calamity, use a kitchen scale. A thermometer is essential both for the water used to dilute the yeast, and to test the heat of rising dough--try to keep it at 70 to 75 degrees. These are modest expenses. Why guess?

There are more tips, but they can be summarized thus:
  • read,
  • experiment,
  • enjoy.
Bread making can be as intensely personal an experience as you like. If it speaks to your soul, as it may, you can take flight at the sight of a working sponge. If it doesn't, you still get a nice loaf to eat.

:rolleyes:

[ June 03, 2001: Message edited by: Kimmie ]
 
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Kimmie, that was beautiful, thanks.

To tell you the truth I had no idea baking was so mathematical. Luckily my hubby is a brain so he is helping me with the calculations you and other people have given. I do both a thermometer and scale so I will be sure and use them. I typically use H2O at 110 degrees and add yeast, is that a good temp?


When should I measure the dough temp? At each rising before punching, shaping etc?

Does it make a difference if you use fresh yeast or a packet of yeast. I read that you can actually get cubes of yeast, I don't know if I can get them where I live but if that is better I will see if our little natural store in the area has some. Otherwise all I have seen in the stores is Red Star and Fleichmans.

Today it is cup cakes for my sons end of the year school party.
Happy baking all.
Annastacia
 
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Joined Feb 21, 2001
As far as yeast goes, the little cubes of fresh yeast cost about 1.59 around here for 3/5 oz and you can buy the stuff wholesale in 1 or 2 lb blocks for 50 cents a lb. Active dry yeast is available in a whole food chain around here for 4 bucks a bag, vs 1.59 for three measly envelopes in the supermarket. I don't use much fresh yeast because it's too much of a pain to store. At work I use mostly saf instant yeast, and the instant only means that it doesn't need to be rehydrated in water. Active dry needs to be rehydrated in warm water. I never add flour or sugar to that water. I have also been using an osmotolerant yeast that is for breads that have more than 10% sugar or less than 60% water and it works amazingly well. If your're just starting out baking bread I would stick with active dry. Sometimes the amount of instant that I wind up using is not much,and it would be easy to make a mistake measuring.Some breads I make use a slurry of 1/4 tsp of yeast to a cup of water, and then you only use one tsp of that. You couldn't weigh that amount of yeast without a scale like pharmacists use. I don't know if it's in this thread or the other one about the lemon juice, but I think most yeast already has ascorbic acid in it. Yeast that we can buy in the supermarket is fairly limited. Apparently the yeast industry can customize the stuff to do whatever you want it to. One of the best pieces of advice I ever heard pertaining to breadmaking was go deep before you go broad. That means master one loaf before you start freelancing with a lot of other stuff. And temember that time and temperature are the two most important ingredients. Wait the bread out. If it doesn't look ready, for punching or baking or whatever, then it probably isn't. Go read a book for half an hour and come back to it. And you can do everything right up to the point of putting it in the oven and then screw it up.
 
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Dear Annastacia,

Here are a few more answers to your questions on this topic.


Dough temperature
Most doughs are at their best when kneaded to between 76°F and 80°F, and just long enough for the gluten to develop. Take the temperature after 8 minutes to see how you're doing, if you are using your KA mixer.

Hand kneading usually takes 12 to 20 minutes, slightly longer than it takes by machine. The ball of ingredients will change before your eyes from a coarse mixture into a smooth, soft, elastic, and springy dough. Check the temperature after 12 minutes.

Yeast equivalents
If your recipe calls for instant yeast, any yeast will work if you make the proper substitution. The ratio is as follows: 100 percent fresh yeast equals 40 percent active dry yeast equals 33 percent instant yeast. In other words:
  • Multiply the amount of instant yeast by 3 for the equivalent amount of fresh yeast.
  • Multiply the amount of instant yeast by 3 for the equivalent amount of fresh yeast.
  • Multiply the amount of active dry yeast by 2.5 for the equivalent amount of fresh yeast.
Dry yeast is more concentrated than fresh yeast because it contains no moisture.

When converting a recipe from dry to fresh yeast, remember to weigh twice as much fresh yeast as you would dry yeast and to do the same when you measure by tablespoons.

Sorry for the delay and have a great weekend!

:D

[ June 22, 2001: Message edited by: Kimmie ]
 

isa

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Joined Apr 4, 2000
Kimmie,

I am curious, could you please tell me where you found all this information on yeast?

Thanks!
 
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Joined May 11, 2001
Kokopuffs' comment about KA dough and hand-kneaded dough is so on target for me. I don't have my KA with me here in Springfield, so I have to knead dough by hand. I used to get it pretty close to KA (after a very long time), but now my arms and wrist start hurting pretty quickly (I work on a computer all day). I don't knead it as long and it doesn't look like KA but i doesn't taste bad.
 

isa

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Joined Apr 4, 2000
Kimmie,


I've made quite a few loaves of bread but never went further then regular white bread and its variations. I've made cinnamon buns, brioche, etc.

I am far from an expert on bread making. I really got into it last winter. Read a lot on the topic, got really interested in yeast and tried a few new recipes. I could use lots more practice, which I intend to get very soon.


Thanks for the info. Now I am getting really curious about Nancy Silverton’s bread book, I’ll have to go to the bookstore this weekend.

[ June 22, 2001: Message edited by: Iza ]
 

isa

3,236
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Joined Apr 4, 2000
Thanks Kimmie. I read a great review on the Epicurious website about Pastries From La Brea. Too bad they never reviewed her bread book. The only negative thing they said about it is that she used extra large eggs when the rest of the world used large eggs.

I really have to find both of her books and have a long look at them.
 

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