Desired dough temperature
As the weather gets warmer, your kitchen and ingredients heat up, affecting how your dough performs, even if you stick to your baking routine. Learn to control the temperature of your dough from mixing to kneading to ensure consistently great results at any time of year.
What professional bakers know
Professional bakers know that controlling the temperature of their dough is the key to achieving consistency. The ideal dough temperature range for wheat-based yeast breads is 75-78u00b0F.
The Desired Dough Temperature Formula
The Desired Dough Temperature Formula allows bakers to calculate the variables that influence dough temperature, with water temperature being the one they can easily control. This figure is an approximation because many variables influence how much heat is generated during the mixing and kneading process.
How the Desired Dough Temperature Formula works
The Total Temperature Factor (TTF) determines the correct water temperature to use in order to achieve your ideal dough temperature by subtracting factors we can’t control, such as room temperature and flour friction.
Testing the impact of dough temperature on your bread
Let’s see how different dough temperatures affect dough development, flavor, and rise in yeast breads by mixing three different doughs. I’ll use King Arthur’s Classic White Sandwich Bread recipe, but half of the all-purpose flour will be replaced with our Organic White Whole Wheat flour.
Dough #1: cold water (50°F)
When using cool or cold water, combine the flour and instant yeast first, then add to the water. The dough’s first rise (in the bowl) is sluggish (though noticeable), but the loaf is ready to bake after an hour in the pan.
Dough #2: very warm water (120°F)
Dough #1 (120u00b0F water, after first and second rises) is definitely over-proofed, but notice how the top of the loaf is bubbling up and sagging?
Dough #3: Desired Dough Temperature Formula
Dough #3 (DDT 75u00b0F) almost doubles in size after the first and second rises, despite the fact that the calculated water temperature is only 59u00b0F! After mixing and kneading in my stand mixer, the dough is exactly 75 u00b0F, and it looks almost perfectly proofed and ready for baking.
Dough #1 (50u00b0F water) bakes into a slightly smaller loaf, but it’s still a good size. Dough #3 (DDT 75u00b0F) wins for the best rise and crumb structure, which isn’t surprising given the 3u00b0F difference in dough temperature.
Flavor and texture
Dough #1 and #3 have a moist crumb and a rich, slightly sweet, wheaty flavor; dough #2 dries out faster and has a bitter, acidic flavor.
Tips for using the DDT formula
The DDT formula does not account for the effect of room temperature, especially if your baking environment is very cool or hot. Using cooler water when baking bread in hot weather can make a big difference.
Do You Use warm or cold water to make bread?
In a word, no. Unlike us, yeast will still work to produce gas at lower temperatures, but at a slower rate, so expect to wait a little longer for your dough to rise and fill out with gas if you use cold water in your dough.
What is the right water temperature for dough?
The ideal temperature for most bread doughs is 75 degrees, and you can’t usually control variables like room temperature, flour, or starter (if using) to achieve this temperature.
How warm should water be for instant yeast?
Use liquid temperatures of 120u00b0F-130u00b0F (very warm, but not too hot to touch) when adding Instant Yeast to dry ingredients. Yeast activity may be reduced if it comes into direct contact with salt or sugar.
What happens if your water is too hot when making bread?
Regardless of the type of yeast you use, once the water temperature reaches 120u00b0F or higher, the yeast will begin to die off, and once the temperature reaches 140u00b0F or higher, the yeast will be completely killed.
What does adding hot water to flour do?
The act of adding boiling water to flour is a common technique used in Scandinavian and Asian baking to pre-cook the starch in the flour so that it takes on a jelly-like texture (via Virtuous Bread), resulting in a softer, squishier bread without the addition of any additional fat.
What temp is tepid water?
Tepid water is made up of two parts cold water and one part boiling water, and has a temperature of around 40 degrees Celsius (105 degrees Fahrenheit).
How do you keep the temperature of dough?
Place your starter and/or bulk fermentation container in the oven (that is turned off), along with an ambient temperature thermometer, and turn the interior light on to maintain dough temperature without the use of a dedicated proofer.
What is room temperature for dough?
If your room is too cold, you can proof the dough in a standard oven (that is off) with no pilot light and the oven light turned on, or in a microwave (that is also off) next to a bowl of very hot water.
How do I know if my water is warm enough for yeast?
To proof your yeast, place it in warm water between 100 and 110 degrees Fahrenheit. If you don’t have a thermometer, test the temperature with your wrist; if it feels very warm on your wrist, it’s perfect for the yeast.
How can I tell if I killed my yeast?
The yeast should be foamy, bubbly, and expanding after 10 minutes, filling over half of the cup/jar and releasing a distinct yeasty odor. This is yeast that is alive and well. If the yeast does not bubble, foam, or react, it is dead.
What happens if you put yeast in hot water?
Patience is advised, not only because such hot water can kill the yeast, causing your dough to not rise, but also because it can harm the structure and flavor of the finished bread by encouraging overproofing or overheating during mixing.
What is the strongest flour?
Bread flour is the most powerful of all flours, with a high protein content of 12 to 14 percent, which comes in handy when baking yeasted breads due to the high gluten content required to make the bread rise properly.
Where should dough be placed to rise or proof?
On a warm day, your counter will suffice; however, if your kitchen is cold, your oven will suffice. Preheat oven to 200 degrees for 1-2 minutes to get it nice and toasty, then turn it off.
Why do you cover yeast bread dough while it is rising?
Keep the bread dough covered to prevent it from drying out and dusting, and place it in a warm, draft-free area of the kitchen while it rises (too much heat will speed up yeast activity, and too much cold air will slow it down). You can also freeze the dough after the first rise.