Grrrrrrr...bread

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Willow
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Grrrrrrr...bread

Post by Willow » Tue Oct 07, 2008 7:56 am

Hey all,
despite my being a good cook, I can't seem to make bread, it either turns out really grainy, doesn't rise, cooks unevenly. Something always seems to go wrong, i have tried every fool proof bread recipe I can find. Anyone got a good one? I want to be able to use yeast and do the kneading...I want to make real bread!!!
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Kystar
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Re: Grrrrrrr...bread

Post by Kystar » Tue Oct 07, 2008 9:43 am

Honestly, I'm in the same boat. I get bricks. Seriously. Though, I've discovered the humidity in your kitchen can affect the rising of the dough. I think my problem is that I have a cold, dry house.

Have you tried looking at http://www.foodnetwork.com and seeing if Alton Brown's Good Eats has any helpful hints? His show seems to have a lot of the science behind food, so he not only gives you the recipe, but the HOW it works and what conditions it needs. Don't know if they have any info on baking bread...but it's worth a try.
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Re: Grrrrrrr...bread

Post by Bandersnatch » Tue Oct 07, 2008 10:22 am

While making bread is not a problem...I can't make a pie crust to save my life. Well, maybe it could save my life - its usually tough enough. :badgrin:

Do you know anyone who makes good bread? Get them to come give you a hand. My theory is - I know when the dough feels 'right' and until you get that instinct you will not get what you want. If someone who does make good bread can give you that experience it might help. Of course that didn't work for my pie crust problem, I finally gave up and buy the ready made crusts.

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Re: Grrrrrrr...bread

Post by Crazy Healer Lady » Tue Oct 07, 2008 8:03 pm

Bread: Knead until you can grab a small coin-sized piece and stretch it until you can see through it. If it rips, the gluten is not released. You cannot over-knead bread! I always add a little more yeast than the recipe says, too. To me, it sounds like under-kneading is the problem; a good 15-20minutes should do. And the Good Eats guy is amazing, by the way!

Pie crust: Hey, skip the rolling! In a food processor, process about a cup of pitted dates and a cup of almonds until it forms a "doughy" consistency. Press into the pie pan. Now, I haven't cooked this recipe, but sense tells me it should be pretty yummy. You just may want to coat the pan with a bit of of flour or almond flour to prevent the dates from sticking.
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Re: Grrrrrrr...bread

Post by Lotus » Tue Oct 07, 2008 10:34 pm

My Grandma made wonderful bread. Here is what I remember:
Yeast is a living thing...it need heat and "food" to grow. Too hot then the yeast will die....too cold it will not grow. Exact temperature is the key. To warm the rising dough they would keep the oven on to heat the house and they would cover the bread. After the first rising then you punch it down and do not work the dough too much.

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Re: Grrrrrrr...bread

Post by Willow » Wed Oct 08, 2008 6:04 am

Hmmm, maybe I don't knead enough, i like that test.

Unfortunately I don't know anyone super close who I can ask to help. But I will keep my ears open.

As for pie crust, I have no problem with that. I have a fool proof recipe I can whip together in minutes. Wierd how somethigns work eh?

Havce you ever heard of oiling bread? Rubbing the dough with oil while it is rising? Apparently all Italians do this.
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Re: Grrrrrrr...bread

Post by Kystar » Wed Oct 08, 2008 7:38 am

Rubbing it with olive oil makes it crust nicely in the oven when it's cooked, and makes it easier to handle when it's done rising.

the only part of bread-making I've got down is getting a nice crust!
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Re: Grrrrrrr...bread

Post by Bandersnatch » Wed Oct 08, 2008 7:55 am

Thanks Crazy...that sounds like the yummiest pie crust ever. I'll try it for Thanksgiving this weekend and use my apples that I only got 10 of this year. (Late frost) :-(

I have always put some type of oil or butter on my bread while it rises. It makes a nice crust but also keeps the bread from drying out...very important when you live in Alberta!!!

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Re: Grrrrrrr...bread

Post by Crazy Healer Lady » Wed Oct 08, 2008 11:21 am

Yes, the oil is a good idea :) Like Bandersnatch says, it keeps the bread from drying out. When it dries out, the bread can't rise to its fullest, and you end up with lumpy, lopsided bread.

Before I bought a bread machine, I used to Reiki my bread all the time. It never failed. In leiu of Reiki, just send some loving energy to the yeast. Better yet, do an experiment! Same batch of bread, split, knead one without any intention (or negative, if you want), and the other sending love in, with a timer. Cook them up, and see the difference. Like the water experiment, but this you can eat ^_^
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Re: Grrrrrrr...bread

Post by Kystar » Wed Oct 08, 2008 12:25 pm

We actually had worse luck with our bread machine. The silly thing started COOKING the dough during the rising stage. That's about when we chucked it...I think we actually gave it away to someone else, so they could fight with it. LOL.
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Re: Grrrrrrr...bread

Post by Draconia » Thu Oct 09, 2008 4:11 pm

Hopefully this will help,it better, since I went to school for this. If it does not I will be embarrassed :oops: Lotus was right. Yeast is a living thing. And needs warmth and food. What I am telling you is from my recipe for home made bread. Every recipe is different.Make sure you follow the the instructions to a tee. The order of ingredients and mixing methods are important to the final outcome or the product. You need to know what kind of Yeast you are using, since there are different kinds(cake,active,and dry)I active mine in warm, not Hot water. About 85 to 110 degrees F. is best. Then you need to feed it. This is when I add the sugar. They love it !Yum! Yum! It should get all foamy and Happy! Add other ingredients as per recipe. **Hint-the best recipe will have you add your salt along with your flour, since salt actually kills yeast. When it comes to Kneading, you dont want to over knead. Kneading creates gluten, too much gluten will make your bread tough and chewy. You also dont want to add too much flour during this, Just enough to keep it from sticking to your board. Form in a ball, place into a greased bowl, flip so that both top And bottom are oily Place in warm area and cover with damp cloth. Allow to rise two times the size, punch down and allow to rise once more. Form into loaves put into greased pans. Allow to rise slightly again Then BAKE. Bread should be golden brown and you can tap on the crust.Dig in and enjoy. in my Family the first loaf is sacraficed. Every one tears it apart smothers it with lots of butter and home made jelly \:D/ \:D/ :-D



For Pie crust:
Make sure your proportions are right, Fat VS Flour, too much flour will make it fall apart.The key is to use ICE water.

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Re: Grrrrrrr...bread

Post by Crazy Healer Lady » Thu Oct 09, 2008 5:05 pm

:oops: Apparently you CAN over-knead bread!
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Re: Grrrrrrr...bread

Post by Lotus » Fri Oct 10, 2008 1:22 am

Dracionia,

I never quite understood why my Grandmother did certain things until reading your post.
All makes sense now.
She always told me that if you work the dough too much then it will not rise in the oven.


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Re: Grrrrrrr...bread

Post by Willow » Fri Oct 10, 2008 9:50 am

I guess it depends on whch bread...my recipe called for 8 minutes of kneading, maybe I went a little too long because this bread is a bit tough...that also might be becuase it is multi-grain instead of whole wheat or white. But I guess I don't want bread like they make at the store...or else I would just go buy it. Good thing I love to bake, it is fun to have more opportunities to try again.
Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind.
Dr. Seuss (1904 - 1991)

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Re: Grrrrrrr...bread

Post by Draconia » Sat Oct 11, 2008 8:01 am

Like I said I hope it helped. I agree multigrain bread is going to be firmer, and alot more healthy. Each type of flour produces different amounts of gluten. With practice and experimentation you will get the hang of it. I wasn't kidding when I said cooking is an art, but baking is a science. In baking, you are manipulating living organism, controlling gases like carbon dioxide, mixing chemicals that produce certain reactions, ect. ect. When I am cooking I can feel free to add or subtract ingredients as I see fit. In baking if I leave out something the whole product could be destroyed. :roll:
" Drive my dead thoughts over the universe like withered leaves to quicken a new birth!" -Shelley's Ode to the West Wind



Merry Meet, Merry Part, and Merry Meet again and may the god's perserve the craft

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