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February 7, 2024

Addressing 5 Common Bread Making Challenges & Expert Solutions from Our Bakers

Bread making is an art that combines science, patience, and creativity. Whether you’re an experienced baker or a novice in baking, encountering challenges in making bread is quite common. This blog discusses some common problems everyone experiences while making bread and expert solutions from our experienced bakers to help you achieve the perfect texture and taste of your homemade bread.

Common Bread Making Challenges

1. Bread Isn’t Rising

One of the most common problems every baker experiences in bread making is dough isn’t rising enough or rising very slowly. The probable reasons for the slow rise are:

  • Insufficient Yeast: If you have used inadequate yeast, then your dough can not rise fully; therefore, always check the quantity for the recipe you are following.
  • Yeast is Expired: It is important to do a ‘yeast freshness test’ before adding it to the mixture to check if it is active.
  • Yeast is Killed: Using water that is too hot can kill the yeast; therefore, it is essential to make sure that water is at the right temperature.
  • Slowed Yeast Activity: Adding too cold water slows down the yeast activity, resulting in a slower rise of the dough.
  • Too Much Salt: If you accidentally add more salt than mentioned in the recipe, it can inhibit the yeast activity and reduce the rising of the dough.

If your dough didn’t rise, the reason is that yeast isn’t properly activated, and yeast activity can be hindered due to any of the above mentioned reasons. To avoid disruption in the yeast activity, ensure that your liquid’s temperature is not more or less than lukewarm and that the measurements are precisely the same as mentioned in the recipe. Also another reason that hinders the rising of dough is storing it in a cool place. Shift your dough for proofing in a slightly warmer place for a little longer, and you might feel the difference.

2. Bread is Too Chewy

Everyone likes bread that is fluffy and soft, but achieving perfection in bread making can be tricky. If your bread turns chewy and gooey from the inside, then the probable reasons to blame are:

  • Not baking enough: If you didn’t bake for enough time or at the right temperature, then chances are that the bread is still not fully baked from the inside. Try baking it for a little longer, and it might work.
  • Over-Kneading: A chewy texture can result from over-kneading, as it breaks the gluten built into the dough.

To avoid over-kneading, knead the dough with your hand until a smooth and elastic dough is formed. Additionally, measure your ingredients precisely to prevent using excessive flour, as this can lead to a denser, chewier loaf of bread.

3. Bread is Dry

If every time you bake a loaf of bread, it turns out to be too dry, then it can be due to the most common mistake, which is baking your bread for too long. Overbaking tends to evaporate the moisture in the bread and make it dry. To prevent dryness, consider adjusting the hydration level in your recipe. Moreover, baking time and temperature play crucial roles in bread making, so keep an eye on your loaf in the oven to avoid over-baking.

4. Bread Is Too White or Too Brown

If you are struggling to achieve the perfect brown colour of your bread, then try these bread making tips by our bakers:

  • If the bread is too white, increase the temperature slightly or bake for a bit longer.
  • On the other hand, if it’s too dark, reduce the temperature and cover the loaf with foil during the latter part of the baking process. This will not make it darker while baking.
  • To achieve the perfect brown colour of your homemade bread, make sure you use light-coloured baking pans, as shiny pans might reflect the heat and affect the colour of your bread.

5. How to Tell Your Bread Is Ready

Knowing when your bread is fully baked is a skill that comes with bread making experience. However, a method suggested by our experienced bakers is to tap the bottom of your loaf and if it sounds hollow, then this is the sign that your bread is ready.

Using the ‘ Toothpick Test ‘ is another foolproof method to determine if bread is fully baked. Insert a toothpick in the middle of your bread, and if it comes out clean without bread crumbs, then it is ready; otherwise, continue to bake it for a few more minutes.

Embrace the bread making journey, learn from your mistakes and don’t shy away from experimentation in baking. Check out our blogs for more bread making tips and recipes.

The Bishops Bakery

To experience the unparalleled taste of our variety of bread in various flavours, delicious cakes, cupcakes, scrumptious sandwiches and a large variety of freshly baked goods visit The Bishops Bakery or order online.

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