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Old 03-03-2007, 01:45 PM   #1
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Question ISO help: Bread slow rising

Hello everyone, new member here....

I was wondering if you all would have any tips as to why my bread dough takes so long to rise... is 68-70 degrees in the room too cold?

~I know the yeast was active, I started in a little water and sugar and it bubbled right up.

~The yeast was not expired, and is Fleishmann's active dry yeast.

I know there are ways to get the dough warmer: put the bowl it's rising in into a sink of warm water, put it in a warm oven, etc... but I was just wondering if there was something else I was doing wrong as to why it always takes so long just sitting on my table like a normal person lets dough rise!

Thanks for your help!!
COTK

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Old 03-03-2007, 03:34 PM   #2
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Your temp range (68-70F) is fine for dough to rise. I assume the bowl is not in a drafty place.

What do you mean by "it always takes so long"? How long is long? How long do you *think* the dough should take to rise? How long does it *actually* take?

Different doughs require different rising times. If you could post your recipe we could help you better.

PS - dough can fail to rise if it has not been sufficiently kneaded - the yeast is active but the air bubbles they give off are not trapped in the dough, so the dough doesn't rise. Could this be part of the problem? How are you kneading your dough (by hand? by bread machine? by stand mixer?). Do you know how to determine if your bread dough is sufficiently kneaded?
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Old 03-03-2007, 04:16 PM   #3
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I usually knead about 5 to 6 min... is it done when it's done sticking to your hands? I've found if it reaches the point when it's done sticking to my hands, then continue on a minute or two, it starts sticking again... so then i add a little flour, knead more, it stops sticking, but if I continue on, same thing happens, sticks, add flour... which is why I now stop after 5 or 6 mins right when it stops sticking... is this not correct?

by long time i mean 2 to 3 hours, when the recipie calls for 60 -90 mins... it just doesn't seem to grow that much. I wonder if it has to do with the size of bowl i use to let it rise in. Maybe if I used a smaller bowl, I would notice it growing more?
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Old 03-03-2007, 04:27 PM   #4
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I gather you don`t follow a recipe then (judging by your method).

bread isn`t Hard to make, but can be stuborn if not done to Some kind of tried and tested recipe (even if it`s one of your own bourne of trial and error).
it CAN be done peicemeal as you`ve outlined but the results are often less than fantastic, do you keep the bread covered with a damp tea towel?
are all the ingredients you add up to temp also?

too much Salt or Salt added at the wrong time can also arrest the prooving, it could be a million things dude :(
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Old 03-03-2007, 05:56 PM   #5
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hi COTK,

puleeeeze post the recipe you're using :) That will really help us target our answers.

Question: are you mixing and kneading by hand? (I asked this before - from your response it *sounds* as if you are, but I'm still unclear).

You raised some interesting questions in your response. I have some photos on my 'puter that show the kneading process and how an all-purpose kneaded bread dough should ultimately look. I'm going to find and upload them in a subsequent response.

While I'm doing this, see if you can post your recipe (pretty please!)

yours - SF
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Old 03-03-2007, 06:20 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by COTK on Mar 03 at 04:16 PM
I usually knead about 5 to 6 min... is it done when it's done sticking to your hands?
Not necessarily! It depends *a lot* on the *kind* of bread you're making. Some kinds of doughs will always be sticky (bakers call this a "wet" dough) and they'll *really* stick to your hands. Even an all-purpose bread designed to be baked in a loaf pan should leave a small residue on your kneading surface or a small residue on your hands when kneading is done.

Quote:
Originally Posted by COTK on Mar 03 at 04:16 PM
I've found if it reaches the point when it's done sticking to my hands, then continue on a minute or two, it starts sticking again... so then i add a little flour, knead more, it stops sticking, but if I continue on, same thing happens, sticks, add flour... which is why I now stop after 5 or 6 mins right when it stops sticking... is this not correct?
Yes you are basically correct. I'll explain further *why* you experience this in a subsequent post as soon as I find my photos.

Quote:
Originally Posted by COTK on Mar 03 at 04:16 PM
I wonder if it has to do with the size of bowl i use to let it rise in. Maybe if I used a smaller bowl, I would notice it growing more?
If you have the dough rise in a straight sided container, it will be easier to judge how much the dough has risen. Pretty much any material for a rising container is fine (stainless steel, pottery, ceramic, glass, pyrex, plastic) bowl. If you don't have a straight sided bowl, do you, for example, have a sufficiently large pot or stock pot? If you're using a slanted type container/bowl (eg: wider at the top than the bottom) then its harder to judge how much the dough has risen.

With any straight-sided container, after you've *lightly* oiled it, put in the dough and covered it with plastic wrap, take a bit of masking tape and put it on the outside of the container at the level where the dough is now. This can help you judge how much the dough has risen.

Waiting to hear from you...stay tuned...SF
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Old 03-03-2007, 08:36 PM   #7
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Silly question, I guess. But does your bread turn out the way you want it to?
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Old 03-03-2007, 10:01 PM   #8
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The bowl size does not matter the dough should rise regardless.I still say take it out of the mixer and knead by hand until it feels right.I worked in bakeries and the big mixers do in fact mix the doughs quite well but I never liked the KAs they just dont do the job they get the job started but there is nothing better than working that dough with your own two hands.
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Old 03-07-2007, 01:29 PM   #9
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Hey, sorry I haven't gotten back to this... thank you so much for all the replies and offers for help!

As far as recipies, it doesn't seem to matter as far as when it's time for the bread to rise. No matter the recipie, it always takes longer than they call for. Most recipies I use call for 60-90 minutes. For me, letting the bread rise the first time takes on average 2 to 3 hours.

My original question was just if there was something I could do differently "technique-wise" to get the bread to rise like it calls for in most recipies I use. The replies so far have been helpful: that some dough is meant to be slightly sticky, from YT2095, "It could be a million things, dude!" and so on... :) I think I'll just need to work more proactively in providing a warmer place to let it rise, the oven on a very low temp, etc, and also use a different bowl to let it rise in, I love the masking tape idea!! And I think it might boil down to just needing more practice!

As far as whether the bread turns out like I want it to, it's really 50/50 right now. Sometimes it does, sometimes it doesn't. When it doesn't turn out, most of the time it's still "doughy" in the middle after baking. Is that from not letting it rise long enough the second time? I've also found that working with whole wheat flour is a lit different than white bread flour. WWF seems to be a lot more heavier than the white.

The day I originally posted this question I was baking three batches from three different recipies: a dinner roll recipie, a white bread, and a whole wheat bread. The first two turned out beautifully, the WWB didn't make it. Was still doughy and sticky in the middle. Is there a trick to working with the WWF?

Again, thanks for all the replies. I had forgotten I posted these questions until I checked my email today. I will be checking back more often now that I remembered I had posted on this forum. Thanks for your patience!
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Old 03-07-2007, 06:57 PM   #10
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COTK, Have you tried the New York Times Bread Recipe? Or mixing your bread using a food processor? Check out the threads...All questions and answers about bread making.
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