View Full Version : What part of breadmaking makes bread tough?

05-30-2009, 04:23 PM
The ingredients rarely change - flour, water, yeast, salt, and honey - but the processes seem to make all the difference in the world between tender, chewy sandwich bread and tough (although airy), firm "sandwich" bread.

What part of the breadmaking process is making my bread so tough with such a firm texture? Too much kneading? Too little kneading? Too much flour? Too much rising time? I'd like my bread to be a little more tender.

05-30-2009, 06:43 PM
It could be a combination of things. But keep in mind that home baked bread will be heavier than a store bought bread.

I'm not certain, but I would say that it could be not enough kneading ad too much flour. When you knead your dough, how long do you knead? Does it get a nice shiny look to it? If not you don't knead long enough. It usually takes my dough at least 20 to 30 minutes of kneading.

I know there are other bread bakers here that can be more help. Hopefully they will chime in. But just keep in mind that your home baked bread will be heavier than store bought.

06-02-2009, 10:00 AM
I would say too much flour. That will definitely make bread tough. I always leave my dough a bit on the sticky side and it makes great bread. I also use honey as a sweetener which helps to keep it soft and fresh.

06-02-2009, 09:24 PM
also kneeding it too much could lend to toughness. I like to kneed just enough to form into loaves.

06-03-2009, 03:20 PM
also kneeding it too much could lend to toughness. I like to kneed just enough to form into loaves.
....but.... if you fail to knead long enough, you can't develop the gluten properly.

06-03-2009, 10:56 PM
Well I will not be much help. I just mix the ingredients, knead till it feels right than cover and come back to it to fold over and put into pans. Family loves bread, it tastes great, don't have a bread machine or mixer, just go by feel. I am glad that I did not know it was hard to make bread when I first started making it. Now when cinok makes bread..... he is restocking the NHL with hockey pucks... watching him, he just uses to much strength and beats the dough up ;D

06-04-2009, 06:45 AM
I don't knead bread at all, it will develop the gluten if you just let it set for 12 to 16 hours before forming into a loaf. I always have some dough rising in the kitchen, even if I haven't decided what I'm going to make with it.(Loaves, rolls, pastries, etc.)

06-04-2009, 01:50 PM
I don't do a lot of kneading, but don't get tough bread either. Didn't want to hijack this thread so put the bread recipe on another thread: Replacing store-bought sandwich bread (http://www.backwoodshome.com/forum/yabb/forum.pl?board=foo-bread;action=display;num=1244130541;start=0#0)


06-04-2009, 01:54 PM
I will say this.... *under-kneading can also make a heavy bread. *Yeast will just about rise anything. *But, the gluten does not develop without some kneading. *The gluten is necessary for a rise. However, I'm not saying that everyone has to knead for 20 or 30 minutes. But the age old test is when the bread gets a nice sheen and the length of time can vary a great deal based on the type of flour, amount of moisture, humidity, weather, elevation, etc.

06-04-2009, 02:30 PM
annabella1: Do you let your dough sit for 12-16 hours at room temperature or in the refrigerator?

06-04-2009, 11:32 PM
when my bread gets a nice sheen I know it is time to stop ;D I just have no clue how long it takes .. lol

06-23-2009, 03:45 AM
I let my dough rise at room temperature for 12 to 16 hours, if I decide not to use it after that then I will put it in the refrigerator. It needs to be a loose dough for the gluten to develop this way. I usually have to add 1 to 2 cups flour to form the loaves or rolls or whatever. Gluten will develop without kneading. As soon as you add water to flour, gluten will begin to develop. Kneading will lengthen and align the gluten strands to make a loaf. Leaving the dough to rise for a long period of time will also allow the gluten strands to lengthen and align. If you are using 100% whole wheat flour, you can knead forever and never get long strands of gluten.