November 22, 2022 - 2:35pm
Any thoughts about the crumb?
I always strive for a lacy crumb with evenly distributed small, medium and large holes. But for many times, I failed to do so. It's very frustrating especially for a sourdough baker who is not a beginner. Can anyone kindly troubleshoot this crumb? Is it fermentation or gluten structure building or scoring (I didn't do traditional single slash scoring this time)?
some info about this loaf:
80% bread flour, 20% whole wheat flour, 75% water, 20% levain, 3% purple sweet potato powder, 2% salt
bulk fermentation 10hr (7hr at room temperature 60.8℉ + 3hr in the microwave oven w/ a cup of hot water in it, dough temperature 70℉)
5 sets of folding (stretch & fold *2, coil fold *3)
I shaped the dough when it almost doubled
13hr cold proof at 35℉
Drop the water a few % and rougher final handling. Enjoy!
Can you please explain final handling a bit?
Treat it rougher - that'll pop the big bubbles. Enjoy!
If it was a long time from the final fold until it was shaped that can happen. You didn’t mention a pre-shape and resting period which is a good time to detect large bubbles. A light pat down or degassing should pop them.
Another thing to consider is a steady temperature during the bulk fermentation so the entire dough ferments at the same rate.
Your reply has inspired me a lot. I'll definitely try your advice next baking. And do you have any thought about the small holes in the crumb? How can I open them more?
The small holes will grow larger with the absence of the larger bubbles taking up space. I doubt that the hole size can be completely pre-determined and the outcome is likely a more of a random chance. It is mostly a matter of nailing the fermentation point and hoping for the best.
I've learnt a lot. And happy Thanksgiving!