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June 05, 2007

Comments

Cat

Good luck with the bread. If you keep it up, you will have strong arms!

I know I am finished kneading when the flour is completely incorporated into the dough so that the dough is smooth with no floury residue on it at all AND the dough does not stick to the board.

If your dough begins to stick once the flour is completely incorporate, it usually means it's ready to eat a little more flour.

Keep kneading until the dough the above criteria are met. At that point you should also notice that it wants to spring back if you poke it with a finger. Springy, smooth, dough is good!

Emira

Hey Cat, thanks for the tips. Is it possible I over kneaded? It seemed like I reached the point you're talking about, then kept going and at that point it got sticky again... is that an option?

dana

Congratulations on making your bread your way. It is always inspiring to read about someone who makes a plan and follows through. Good bread is just frosting on the cake.

Kate H.

Congratulations on your breadmaking effort and results.

Don't know what your recipe calls for, but a good rule of thumb is 2 packets (the little square envelopes) of yeast for heavy, wholegrain breads (2-loaf recipes. 1 packet = 2.25 teaspoons). A cup of water for the proofing seems a bit much, but that doesn't mean it can't work.

As for the kneading, I'm not sure you can overdo it. The idea is to stretch and develop the gluten in the flour. Ten minutes is good, and Cat is absolutely right-- if the dough is getting sticky again, add more flour. (I set the digital timer, turn on some good, rhythmic music, and have at it.)

I've found since I went to strong bread flour for the white flour component (you generally need some for the gluten component so the loaves will rise), my bread has come out much better. Better rise and better texture.

For what it's worth! :-)

sam

I agree with Cat on her advice and add the following -- over kneeding is like being over massaged -- really really really hard to imagine.

Congratulations. I have always thought that making a good loaf was tomb stone worthy.

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