Thursday, 2 April 2009

the world's tiniest loaf of wholemeal bread

This photo does not do justice to the size of my latest loaf of bread. Being on a bit of a bread kick, and loving the wholemeal and seeded breads as we do, we thought we'd give wholemeal bread a go. The first rising seemed to go like normal, but the second rising, whilst normal in duration, did not proceed as high as usual, and after an hour and a half I gave up and threw it in the oven. It was still tasty! Just very, very small. Does anyone have any ideas why this might have occured?

homemade wholemeal bread with nuttelex and strawberry jam

7 comments:

Vegetation said...

I don't bake enough bread to know what went wrong, but I've had things like that happen before.

At least it's also the cutest tiniest loaf of wholemeal bread, right?

Mandee said...

My gf loaves didn't rise very high either! They were bigger than foccacia but not quite a proper loaf!

elektra-lite said...

My first suspect would be the weather - was it more unusually humid/wet/dry/hot than normal? Was the house extra heated/cool? Was the yeast out of date or close to use by?

For breads, that's what I'd be looking at. Apart from that - have you appeased the Gods lately with a libation of wine? Cause sometimes successful bread is as hit and miss as that for me. :)

lauredhel said...

I have read that not only does the wheat germ inhibit the gluten development, but the bran sort of "cuts" the gluten strands on kneading. The latter would explain why it was the second rise that went wrong for you.

I've had good luck making good wholemeal bread by making it 1/3-1/2 wholemeal instead of completely, and by doing a single-rise no-knead bread instead of a double-kneaded or breadmaker bread.

steph said...

It IS the cutest tiniest loaf of wholemeal bread! So that's something.

Hi elektra-lite - I don't think the weather was any different from usual, and the yeast is relatively new...I'm still getting used to this whole baking thing though.

That is interesting, lauredhel! I will definitely try it with half and half or something, that could be it. I'll have to work out how no-knead bread works though, kneading is the best part!

lauredhel said...

I'm way too tired to knead, so no-knead bread is my saviour! It's just a matter of very little yeast, high hydration, and a very long rise (18-24 hours). Then I dump it into a very hot Le Creuset, bake 20 minutes lid on, 20-25 minutes lid off. The long incubation develops the gluten for you without mechanical input. You end up with a bread somewhere between what's usually called "Italian" in shops here, and ciabatta.

Ricki said...

I'm a total loss when it comes to yeast bread, but that does look awfully cute!