Re: bread feels like a damp sponge when cooked!

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"ME!" wrote:

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Even aprox., no way.

That hydration is too large.

500g flour and 450 ml water, I don't think there is a flour that takes 95=
hydration, lucky if you make 75% a reality with a 14% protein flour.

No wonder it's a wet sponge.;-)

I suspect your protein content of the flour has changed.

C=A6-)=A7 H. W. Hans Kuntze, CMC, S.g.K. (_o_)
"Don't cry because it's over, Smile because it Happened"
_/ _/ _/ _/ _/ _/ _/ _/ _/ _/ _/ _/ _/ _/ _/ _/ _/ _/ _/ _/

Re: bread feels like a damp sponge when cooked!

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I'm not in Australia, so I'm unfamiliar with the brand names.  However, your
statement "I thought it was our oven, but just moved house and the same
thing is happening."  caught my attention.  Did you mean you moved?  If so,
it may be a matter of changes in house temps/humidity.  I don't see where it
would be the yeast, I assume it's still doing the job of raising the bread
properly?  It could be the flour.  Is this the same brand you were using?
Are you getting it at the same store? If so, I'd call your store and ask if
they've had any changes in suppliers/storage.  One thing I've learned to do,
and I suggest it to anyone who's having problems with the interior not
getting completly cooked, get an instant read thermometer and check the
inside middle of the loaf before you take it out.  It should register
between 190 and 205 deg F when the bread is fully baked.

Re: bread feels like a damp sponge when cooked!
Thanks to all the replies.

Problem was in both houses. So too much water, will try less. and will try
the thermometer as well.

Bread is rising well, 1st and 2nd rises. we do think it is the flour so I
will try another brand as well - all to eliminate each item to find the
problem - fingers crossed as we hate supermarket bread!

-- - a local perspective of the Gold Coast

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Re: bread feels like a damp sponge when cooked!
Wow, lots of yeast.  My basic recipe is

2t yeast
835ml water
~10c flour, more or less depending on the weather and how accurate I am with
the water
1t salt
2T honey
1T oil

If you're really using only 4c of flour you need maybe 1/2-3/4t yeast, and
you'll need salt to moderate the yeast activity.  If reducing yeast and
adding salt don't do the trick, pick up a new (small) packet of yeast and if
THAT doesn't fix it buy a new bag of flour and see what that does.

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Re: bread feels like a damp sponge when cooked!
Do you have a scale in your kitchen?  If you can weigh the flour and water,
you might find that your hydration is very high, as a previous poster noted.
I make a bread at 100% hydration, but it's more like a batter.  Where is the
salt?  a loaf this size should take 1-2 teaspoons salt, depending on your

What do you bake the bread in?  If it's a very high hydration bread and you
attempt a boule, you could well have a wet interior.  Try making the bread
into a flat bread shape, like a foccacia.  I literally pour my 100% dough
onto a greased sheet and bake it.  My experience is that high hydration
breads are tricky to make in large, high loaves, because it's difficult to
get complete baking before the crust burns.  In some cases I use an aluminum
(aluminium, to the people who speak British <g>)  foil tent over the top to
slow down the browning.

What color is the bread when it's finished?  It may be that you're just not
baking long enough.

I use Fahrenheit, but your Celsius is equivalent to 390F, so it's not too
different from what I use for some breads.  You might try 450 F (230C) for
10 minutes, then 350F (175C) for 15 to 20 minutes (Maybe a touch more as you
do now out of the pan, possibly with the oven off.).  The initial higher
heat will start the browning and the longer lower heat will give a thorough

All in all, it sounds like you have a very high hydration bread that's not
baked long enough and that lacks salt.


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Re: bread feels like a damp sponge when cooked!
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HEllo Gayle,Your problem is interesting .Let me have a look at it.
I had an experience with  Defiance  bread flour when I was there, down
under.But it was the 25 kilogram bag Bakers Flour. I have not tried
the 10  kilogram bag sizes that they sell in the supermarket and
For me the Defiance bread flour  is just an average bread flour with a
protein content of around  12%.Its hydration performance fluctuates
just like other bread flour but I have not met problems with
fermentation and proofing.
That yeast ( possibly active dry) is I am not familiar as I was using
mostly compressed yeast there. Indeed occasionally I use the instant
type yeast as well.
By looking at your recipe it is typical of Australian type dough
(usually containing bread improver)but you may have  forgotten to type
or  put in the salt.
A typcal Aussie bread has this recipe either made by home or their
baking industry using instant yeast:
Bread flour  1000 grams(about 8 measuring cups)
Dry yeast    10-15 grams  instant dry yeast(1-1/2 tablespoon or 3-5
Bread improver10-20 grams(1-2 tablespoon or 3 to 6 teaspoon)
salt        15- 20 grams or 4 teaspoon
water         580-650 grams or Milliliters(ml)

The instant yeast is added to the flour then mixed with the rest of
the ingredients.If you are using canned active dry yeast(15-20 grams)
you should have to hydrate it with a small amount of lukewarm water
about 5 times the yeast quantity then  let it bubble up for 15 minutes
and add to the rest of the ingredients to form a dough.
It is then mixed or kneaded until smooth about 20 minutes by hand.
Then its is just fermented for maximum of  20 minutes if using the
maximum amount of bread improver, or 45 minutes  if using the least
amount  then scaled, rounded and given some 10-15 minute rests and
then molded and placed on pans.
Allowed to rise until it reaches the pan rim then baked usually at
215-230 degC for 20-30 minutes or even more for larger size loaves.
Are you familiar with this recipe?
How about trying this and  compare with your own.
If your dough has no salt it can appear more wet and cannot absorb
that much amount of water you are adding.
You also stated later that there was two rise;is it the fermentation
of the whole dough batch and the proofing of the bread in the baking
 The bread improver there is made by either Bakel's , Shclumberger,
Pinnacle, and WestonFoods  and are in similar composition and
performance;usually containing ascorbic acid and potassium bromate, as
well as emulsifiers and fungal and malt enzymes.At that amount which
is the maximum required for such an improver you should not need long
rising time plus the fact that you used large amount of dry yeast.
And if the dough was really soft it will overflow in the loaf pan due
to the exceptional oven spring with maximum amount of bread improver.
And if your dough is really soft, then the inside of the bread should
not have uniform grain like a sponge but will have large holes.If its
underbaked it will collapse instead of showing these damp sponge
Therefore I think  the recipe you gave is not accurate in content and
Just like what other posters suggested its best to weigh your
ingredients and check if you are really presenting  the recipe you
actually used.
From my experience, most Aussie bread (including those made by
hobbyist)are not high hydration type but just normal so I was
wondering what sort of cup are you using as I am expecting it is not
the normal measuring cup;or  was the water really that high and the
dough really wet? You may have difficulty kneading that if its too
wet.Most Aussies do not like to really  a wet dough specially for
normal panned toast bread type.
If you say you bake in the pan then its probably a loaf or toast type
bread.I do not understand why you have to remove the bread from the
pan and continue baking.It will shrink and affect its apperarance as
well as the texture of the inside of the bread.An underbaked bread
once removed from its pan will likely collapse. It should remain
completely baked in the pan before removal.
Baking at 200 deg C is the minimum temperature  for loaf type bread at
home but the baking time is usually 30 minutes to attain an even
bake.If your oven encourage faster browning your should reduce the
heat after 20 minutes and continue baking for at least 10 minutes more
for a proper bake specially for an average size Australian loaves.

Re: bread feels like a damp sponge when cooked!
600g of flour to 450ml water

used the baking stone to shield on the lower rack, cooked on middle rack and
no burning on its' bottom! Well still 'wet' so will decrease the water and
see how I go plus contact the manufacturer.

Thanks to all

-- - a local perspective of the Gold Coast

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