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If you enjoyed this post, please consider sharing it with others using one of the social sharing buttons above. Thanks, Jeff and Zoë

446 thoughts on “I posted a comment to this site but it hasn’t appeared. What happened?

  1. I just made a batch of dough in a 6 qt container. whole wheat dough. Pg 53 recipe with vital glutan. The dough has raised over the container down the sides. Is the dough over the sides good dough? what did I do wrong? Next time what should I decrease?
    Thank you. Have both books. Arrived yesterday.

    • Hi Pat,

      Your dough rose over the sides of a 6-quart container? Wow! I’ve only had that happen once with the brioche dough I tried making in a slightly smaller bucket. Yes, the dough is just fine to use, just scoop it back into the bucket, it probably will not rise again in the bucket so it will be just fine.

      The only thing I can imagine is that you possibly used more yeast than is called for and the water must have been warm enough to make the dough rise very rapidly.

      Any chance you live at high altitude? This is something that would happen in high altitudes as well.

      Let us know more details and we can try to help, Zoë

  2. hi, i was making sticky bun usring your no knead dough, but i think my dough is too soft, it’s a bit hard to roll up, when i try to form the dough into ball, it’s sticky, i had to keep adding flour. and my sticky bun dough didn’t stand up well, since it’s soft. what should i do? thanks.

    • Hi Yvonne,

      It sounds like your dough was a bit too soft. Was the dough chilled before you tried to use it? The brioche dough is really unworkable until it is thoroughly chilled.

      Did you use the scoop and sweep method of measuring? If you use the spoon and sweep method you will end up with too little flour and the dough will be too wet.

      You can add more flour to the remaining dough and let it rest again to let the flour absorb the excess of water.

      Thanks, Zoë

    • ML: Those are always quick-breads, leavened with baking soda/powder. But Healthy Bread in Five Minutes a Day (http://amzn.to/aqrCl9) has great vegetable based (yeasted) breads, I’m guessing you could swap in zucchini for beets, parsely, and other ground-up vegetables we use. And we do have a banana-based breads.

      No plans for putting these up on the web anytime soon- publisher will kill us if we put up everything! Jeff

  3. hello Zoe
    i chilled the dough for two days, then I made the ball and unchilled it on the counter before rolling into sheet. Should I not unchill it?
    thanks!

  4. I live full time in an RV. RV refrigerators are small like 8 cu ft. Too small to hold a large container of dough. Question: Can I cut your basic Whole Grain master recipe ( pg. 54) in half and still get the same results? Plus, RV ovens are very, very small. Bottom shelf to inside top of oven is only nine inches. Bottom shelf is only 2 inches above propane gas flame element. If I used a 5/8 to 3/4 inch baking stone on the bottom shelf will this be sufficient clearance for proper baking either directly on the stone or in a clay or dutch oven baker? My middle oven shelf is only five inches from inside top of oven and not enough clearance for a clay cooker or dutch oven. I’m really committed to using the bottom shelf
    Please advice…from an eager RV baker!

    • Hi John,

      Yes, all of our recipes can be cut in half!

      I bake my pizza on the bottom shelf of the oven, and I get a wonderful bottom crust. I think it should work for you, but be careful that the bottom isn’t burning. You may want to start it on the bottom and then move it up after about 75% of the baking time. You may have to do a little experimenting with the first loaf or two.

      Enjoy and happy travels! Zoë

  5. I make spelt bread. I have used the 100% Whole Wheat receipe on page 79, with whole grain spelt. Because I am avoiding the extra gluten, I simply added dough enhancer. The first batch was a wonderful surprise, very soft and VERY small loaves. The second time, there was so much liquid ontop of the refrigerated dough (about 7 days after storing) that I had to throw it out. Does spelt give off the liquid you add if left too long? How long is too long to refrigerate spelt dough? Any adjustment ideas for a loaf of 100% spelt bread?

    • Maryanne: I’m not surprised there was too much liquid with 100% spelt and no VWG– this isn’t going to store well at all, that’s why we went for the VWG.

      You could try bringing down the water, but I still think you’ll have trouble. Jeff

  6. Using Artisan Bread in 5 minutes a Day, page 74, Light Whole Wheat Bread, my dough was really wet and could not be shaped even after 2 days in the refrigerator. Can I adjust the remaining dough in the refrigerator by adding flour (after 2 days in the refrigerator)?

    • Elizabeth: Yes, you can work in some more flour until it looks like the doughs in our videos (see tab again). Have you had this problem with other doughs from the book. It’s odd, that one isn’t all that wet. Jeff

  7. I would like to incorporate some oat bran into the healthy breads, and I wonder if I should just add a couple of tablespoons to the existing recipe, or whether I should reduce the amount of flour by a couple of tablespoons.
    I’m on a real kick with making these breads, and having a lot of fun experimenting.

    • Hi Irene,

      If you are just adding a couple of tablespoons you can probably do it without adjusting the water. If the dough seems a bit too stiff add a tablespoon more water as well.

      Enjoy, Zoë

  8. Hi Jeff and Zoe,

    I’m living in Kenya. One day I was searching in the internet for artesian bread and I found your web page recipe. Then I
    wanted to buy all the tools and ingredients to make the bread, but I didn’t find a place where I can buy a baking stone, cast iron or enameled cast -iron like Le Creuset. I went to pre-owned pot store and I bought a cast iron pan it was old, rusty and expensive.
    I made the bread and it was good.
    Is there any-differences between baking stone or a cast-iron in the result?
    Thank you!!!

  9. I made the master recipe-whole grain artisan free-form loaf. I saw the video and I wrote down the ingredients.
    I don’t have any of your book. I’m so sad for that. I’m thinking to buy it on internet and ask someone to bring it to Nairobi Kenya.
    Jeff
    I have a better idea, perhaps you can come for a safari trip with your family and bring the book.(I’ll buy it of course)
    Is there e-book version of ‘”Healthy bread five minutes a day?

    My second hand cast iron pan doesn’t have a lid, is it any differences in the result?

    Thank you so much.

  10. Hi: I am new to your method of bread baking but love the process. I have made the Deli Rye and everyone loved it!

    I was wondering if you have any suggestions to adding the water to the pan for the steam? It seems I lost most of the steam before I could pour in all the water and get the oven door closed. I have spent some time reading over others questions and have been unable to see if anyone else had any helpful hints. Would appreciate yours. Thanks.

    • Hi Jo Ann L,

      The steam is only in use for the first 10 minutes of the baking, so you don’t need that much water to achieve this. However, if the water is evaporating before you can get it in the pan I suspect you aren’t using a full cup. The most important thing is to add the water quickly and shut the door to trap the steam.

      Thanks, Zoë

  11. I love both books, especially the second one where I won’t have to use so much white flour. Quick question: can I freeze all the dough recipes? I want to try several, but have a small family and we won’t use them fast enough for fridge storage.

  12. Soft American-Style White Bread in ABin5 pg 204

    Would substituting margarine for the butter in this recipe yield the same result? I have a child with a dairy allergy.

    Thank you!

    • Hi Kimberly,

      Yes, you can substitute margarine in that recipe. It will have a slightly different flavor, but I bet your child won’t even notice.

      Enjoy, Zoë

  13. Can I freeze any of the doughs in AB5? We are a household of 2 people and if I make even a half-recipe; we’re eating pumpernickel for nearly two weeks. Would especially like to freeze and then bake the peasant breads.

    Thanks

    • Yes, Kathy you can freeze all of the doughs.

      Wrap them well and freeze. Let them defrost still wrapped and then treat them as thought they just came from the bucket.

      Thanks, Zoë

  14. I’d like to use almond flour in the gluten-free crusty boule (Page 236 in Hbin5). I’m thinking it would be healthier than using cornstarch. How do I substitute almond flour for another type of flour? By the way, the only measurements I have had to change living at a 7,500-foot altitude have been the size of my jeans. Your book has changed my life!

    • Hi Denise,

      You can’t really replace all of the cornstarch with almond flour, it is far too heavy and will have an entirely different textures. It will result in a very dense loaf. If you don’t want to use cornstarch I have had good results using tapioca in its place. If you want to incorporate a little almond flour I’d start with about 1/4 cup and see if you like the result and go from there. Do a half batch to start with.

      Good luck and let me know how it goes! Zoë

  15. I Used to be able to say I never baked bread, my wife said i was crazy to try, but try i did. Now my wife tells me she can’t bread that I didn’t bake! Thank you I guess?

    My question is I would like to make a large batch of doe so I can bake bread to put into my staff’s Christmas baskets. Do i need to worry about the doe not rising correctly if i make a batch of the mater recipe for about twenty loaves? Is there something else i should also worry about? I am using the recipe from your book ” healthy bread ifive minutes a day”.

    Thank you and happy holidays!

    Sorry if you receive this in duplicate.

    • Ossi: You should be able to make a huge batch like that, so long as the container’s large enough, and you can adequately mix it. Good luck, and thanks for the kind words! Jeff

  16. I have been baking bread from your book for a couple of years now….but havent been able to get this question answered. When baking the bread, I often get a strong, almost vinegar type smell that is not pleasant. I never get a “bread is baking” pleasant smell in the kitchen. The bread is good, but the smell is very troublesome.

  17. I’m planning to make the whole grain rosemary potato dinner rolls on pg. 125 of your Healthy Bread book. For the potatoes should I use a waxy potato such as yukon gold, or a mealy type such as Idaho, or doesn’t it matter?

    Thanks.

    • Hi Randy,

      It doesn’t really matter which type of potato you use, but the waxy type will hold its shape a bit better and have a little more toothsomeness.

      Thanks and enjoy, Zoë

    • Hi June,

      They must be referring to quick breads, not the style you will make from our books. Most of our recipes call for a 450 degree oven, but with a convection you often need to reduce by 20-25 degrees. Best to check the manual. Be sure to watch for intense browning too quickly. After the first loaf you will figure out exactly what settings are best.

      Enjoy, Zoë

  18. On P.59 in Healthy Bread in Five minutes the variation section states to add seeds, nuts, etc. to the water mixture. If you are using the bread over the course of 14 days won’t the seeds/nuts go rancid?

    • Hi Juliann,

      If the dough is refrigerated for that time the seeds and nuts will be just fine, assuming they were in good shape prior to using.

      Thanks and enjoy, Zoë

  19. Howdy,

    I’m wondering what the difference is between savory/cheese bread recipes that call for a mixed dough (spinach-feta) and those that you add aggregate to before the rest period (sundried tomato-parm)? Just tradition?

    Finally getting some regular use out of my Lodge 2-burner flat top griddle! Bread is fun.

    Thanks,
    Tyler
    STP

  20. once i have shaped the dough – you state i need to allow the dough to rest with loosely covered plastic. do i have to use plastic? can i use a clean cotton tea towel and get the same result?

    • Angela: for wet dough like ours, we find that cloth sticks to it too much. If you don’t want plastic to touch the dough, cover the loaf with an overturned bowl or similar, roomy enough to allow for expansion. Works just as well. Jeff

  21. I tried your method with Canadian flour (Robin Hood unbleached) and the bread was quite dense and underbaked in the center. I’m aware that our flour is different than that in the States, and wondered if you have any ideas to get a better loaf. Thanks

    • Marlene: Which of our recipes (which book and page number) are you using, so I can better answer?

      But Robin Hood Canadian unbleached is higher in protein that US AP. See info on higher-protein flours on our FAQs page, about “Flour Varieties…”

      Jeff

  22. I’D LIKE TO KNOW WHY WHEN I SLASH THE TOP OF MY BREAD IT DOSEN’T RISE THE WAY IT SHOULD DURING BAKING?
    I’VE JUST STARTED LEAVING IT SO IT GETS HIGH DURING THE BAKING PROCESS. ANY ANSWERS TO THIS QUESTION?

    • Hi Baba,

      I wonder if you aren’t slashing it too deeply? You want to slash the loaf with a few 1/4-inch deep slashes.

      How long are you letting the loaf rest before baking?

      Thanks, Zoë

  23. MAYBE I AM SLASHING IT DEEPER BECAUSE I FIND I HAVE TO GO OVER THE SLASH BECAUSE MY SERRATED KNIFE GETS STUCK IN THE DOUGH AND I HAVE TO TAKE IT OUT AND TRY AGAIN. I LET IT RISE FOR 90 MINUTES.
    I HAVE A FEW OTHER QUESTIONS. CAN YOU FREEZE THE RAW DOUGH FOR ALL OF YOUR BREADS AFTER PROOFING IT FOR THE 2 HOURS INCLUDING THE GLUTEN FREE BREADS AND FOR HOW LONG? ALSO IF I TAKE THE RAW DOUGH AND DIVIDE IT IN HALF FOR ONE LOAF HOW LONG DO I PROOF IT FOR AFTER TAKING IT OUT OF THE FRIDGE? ALSO HOW LONG WOULD I BAKE IT FOR?
    THANK YOU FOR YOUR HELP!

    • Hi Baba,

      What dough are you baking right now that you are resting for 90 minutes? Which book? The slashing doesn’t need to be lightly done, just about 1/4-inch deep. If your knife is getting stuck it sounds like maybe your dough is a touch too wet? Are you measuring the flour with the scoop and sweep method? (NOT spoon and sweep).

      All the doughs can be frozen after the initial rising time for about 2-4 weeks depending on the type of dough. Those with eggs don’t freeze as long.

      You will want to add about 30+ minutes to a loaf that is twice as large and bake for an additional 15-20 minutes.

      Thanks, Zoë

  24. SORRY ME AGAIN. SO THE SLASHES IN THE BREAD SHOULD BE VERY LIGHTLY DONE? AND ABOUT THE DIVIDING THE RAW DOUGH IN 1/2 AND MAKING TWO LOAVES INSTEAD OF THE 4 IS WHAT I MEAN BY THE THIRD QUESTION.
    THANKS

  25. HI ZOE
    I AM MAKING THE DELI STYLE RYE, THE PUMPERNICKEL AND THE GLUTEN FREE WITH OIL BREAD. THE DELI STYLEL RYE IS FROM ARTISAN BREAD IN 5 MINUTES A DAY AND THE OTHER TWO ARE FROM HEALTHY BREADS IN 5 MINUTES A DAY.
    IF MY DOUGH IS TOO WET THEN SHOULD I CUT DOWN ON THE WATER ADDED DURING INITAL MIXING BY HOW MUCH OR ADD MORE FLOUR WHEN SHAPING? YES I’M MEARSURING IN A MEASURING CUP AND THEN SCRAPING WITH A KNIFE. WHAT DO YOU SUGGEST?
    AFTER I DEFROST THE FROZEN DOUGH SHOULD IT PROOF FOR THE 90 MINUTES OR LONGER. DURING THE DEFROSTING ARE THERE ANY PARTICULAR INSTRUCTIONS?
    I WILL TRY ADDING 30 MINUTES (1 HR 20-30-40 MIN.) IN THE RISING AFTER I SHAPE IT FOR THE LARGER LOAF AND I WILL BAKE IT FOR THE ADDITIONAL 15-20 MINUTES. WILL THAT BE LONG ENOUGH? I WILL DO THIS TOMORROW MY DOUGHS ARE IN THE FRIDGE RIGHT NOW. OH, HOW WOULD YOU SUGGEST TO STORE THE BREAD ONCE IT IS BEING USED?
    THANK YOU FOR YOUR HELP.

  26. Hi Jeff & Zoe
    My girlfriend and I received Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day for Christmas and love it so far! We’ve baked some delicious loaves without issue, until we attempted the Deli-Style Rye (pp. 58-59). We mixed the dough yesterday, let it rest in the fridge overnight, and about 24 hours later pulled it out to bake loaf #1. The problem is the dough is COMPLETELY soaked! There was a puddle of liquid (at least a 1/2 cup!) sitting underneath the main dough mass that got sort of mixed in with the dough when we tried to take a chunk out to bake – needless to say, we were a bit surprised! We followed the recipe and instructions to a tee, being the perfectionists we are, and are flummoxed as to where to go from here. Should we have discarded the liquid? Mixed it back in? Should it even BE there? I hate the idea of throwing out all that nice dough and caraway seed; can we salvage some how? (I can’t emphasize how wet the dough is now.) Thanks in advance :)

  27. Hi again guys,
    We played a little CSI and found the problem. It seems our fridge got unplugged accidentally and a bunch of defrost dripped through the gap in the plastic wrap into the bowl. A serious bummer, but at least the case is solved. We’ll try again I suppose!

    • Hi Nick,

      Glad you found the root of the problem, but I’m sorry about your refrigerator! Let us know how the next batch goes!

      Thanks, Zoë

  28. Jeff, Zoë, I just wanted to thank you for the book and method, I’ve been working on it since xmas. This is my second batch of your master recipe, and this time I baked it in a loaf pan. I think it came out really well.

    http://sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc6/hs061.snc6/167120_1608948822579_1201965721_31418467_2297983_n.jpg

    My first batch, though, while the breads came out ok, the crumb was really dense and a bit doughy. The last bread had a wonderful dark crust, black in bits, but was still a big dense.

    Any recommendations? My second batch did rise a bunch more than the first batch, so that may be the reason.

  29. I had a problem a couple of days ago with dense, heavy bread and a funny taste. Turns out the flour had been in the cupboard for at least 6 years!

    A new batch with new flour–GM, have never heard of King Arthur, must be a midwest local product–was fabulous, like the best fresh ciabatta you’ve ever tasted.

    And that’s with 1.5 tsp of salt, to fit my spouse’s health requirement.

    I’m a fan, guys!

    Bill

    • Bill: Yep, really old flour gives very strange results. The bread just doesn’t taste right. Gold Medal’s the Minneapolis product, so I have to boost it, and King Arthur’s from Vermont, so Zoe has to boost it :-)

      Glad you saw about adjusting the salt (see FAQ above). Jeff

  30. HI
    COULD YOU PLEASE TELL ME WHEN YOU REFER TO 4 ONE POUND LOAVES IS THAT RAW OR BAKED? HOW MUCH RAW DOUGH WOULD YOU USE FOR A LARGER LOAF? I FIND THE ONE POUND LOAVES ARE QUITE SMALL.
    LOVE THE BOOKS AND THE RECIPES. GREAT FUN FOR ME TO BAKE THEM.

    • Hi Baba,

      The master recipe is a scant 4-pounds of raw dough. The loaves loose a touch of moisture as they bake, but not much!

      Enjoy! Zoë

  31. HI ZOE AND JEFF
    WELL I TRIED ADDING 1/4 CUP LESS WATER SO I COULD SLASH THE TOP. THAT WORKED WELL BUT WHAT I FOUND THE BREAD WAS REALLY DENSE. I MADE THE DELI STYLE RYE AND THE EUROPEAN PHEASANT BREAD. ARE THEY SUPPOSED TO BE DENSE? MIND YOU EVERYONE LIKED THEM BUT THERE WERE VERY FEW AIR BUBBLES. WHAT DO YOU SUGGEST? ALSO WHICH DOUGH WOULD YOU RECOMMEND FOR PIZZA DOUGH? DOES FRESH YEAST WORK FOR THIS METHOD WITH THE SAME MEASUREMENTS AND INGREDIENTS?
    THANK YOU F OR YOUR HELP.
    BABA

  32. Baba: Decreasing the water can definitely cause our stuff to be too dense. See our “FAQs” page– click above, and look at the “Dense Crumb, What Am I Doing Wrong?…” line, and others– scan all the FAQs to see if you’re doing something that might be contributing.

    But I’m guessing you’re going to like the result better with a longer rest time. We said 40 min in the 1st book, but some people prefer 60, or even 90 minutes. Experiment and see what you think, especially if your house if very cool. Jeff

  33. Re: HB in 5…
    I’ve been baking bread for many years and your technique has revolutionized my efforts. But here are a few other ideas for challah I’ve gathered:
    1. Adding some saffron to the warm water gives the bread a glow and wonderful scent.
    2. A nice slicing loaf (like the ones we used to buy from the Jewish bakery around the corner) can be made by cutting the bread into 2 unequal portions. Roll the larger piece into a log (tucking ends under) and place in a well-greased loaf pan (I’m having success w/ a regular loaf tin, lined on the bottom w/ a piece of oiled parchment–no problems getting it out of the pan). With the other part of the dough, divide into thirds and make a loose braid. Set the braid atop the bottom portion and let rise–makes a beautiful squarish slice with the braided top.
    3. An even more elegant challah can be made similar to the idea above. Take a generous portion of dough and divide into unequal halves. Then cut each half into thirds and loosely braid. Set the smaller braid on top of the larger (I sometimes moisten the bottom braid a bit to ensure adherence); let rise. Gorgeous when baked!

  34. I am baking using the Healthy bread book. I have a question about the peppery pumpkin loaf. Can canned pumpkin puree be used in place of the fresh cubed pumpkin? Does the amount of water in the recipe have to be reduced to do that?

    • Hi Monica,

      It would be a very different loaf and will take some experimenting to produce a loaf that isn’t too dense. There is a pumpkin pie brioche at the back of the book that may help you get started!

      Thanks and enjoy, Zoë

  35. I recently received ABin5 and first want to tell you how much I am enjoying it. I have baked three loaves from the “master loaf “, and all have been delicious. My next loaf is to be the “Crusty White Sandwich Loaf”, and here is my question: on pg 44, step 4 it states…..A baking stone is not essential when using a loaf pan; if you omit it, you can shorten the preheat to 5 minutes. If the preheat is 450 degrees how can the preheat time be five minutes??

    • Hi Joe,

      You will want to allow the oven to preheat to 450 degrees. In my oven that is closer to 10 minutes, but for some it is faster.

      Enjoy, Zoë

  36. Thanks for the prompt reply! You guys are awesome. I am 69 years old and this is my first venture into bread baking other than using a bread machine years ago. I am looking forward to exploring many recipes out of your book. The loaves I have baked so far have been loved by everyone who has tasted them.

  37. Hi,
    I’ve been making your recipes for almost a year and love it! The bread is amazing- absolutely delicious! The problem is what my loaves look like. The loaves start out looking perfect when they go into the oven but as they are baking the bottom seems to “burst” out of the loaf and the loaf “tips” to the side. The loaf looks great from one angle yet totally deformed from the other side. What am I doing wrong? Thank you!

    • Hi Lauren,

      This is typically a result of dough that needs a longer resting time before baking. Try letting the dough sit for an additional 15 to 20 minutes and you will probably resolve the problem. You also need to make sure that you are slashing the dough 1/4-inch deep or it won’t open up cleanly.

      Thanks! Zoë

  38. Love your ABin5minday. Tonight tried the pita and I rolled the dough to 1/8″ and cooked for 5 min., then browned on above rack. Put them in cloths, put them in a brown sack, and they all have hard tops. I live at 5,000 feet; could that be an issue? I wonder if I should have made them thicker for 5 min. cook and/or not cooked them for 5 min.?

    And, anyway to soften them up??
    Thank you.

  39. Hello

    I just mixed everything for the Vermont Cheddar Bread then I noticed that I used bread flour instead of the unbleached flour will it make any difference in the bread. I will also have it for its first proofing longer then the 2 hours. Is all of this ok or not?
    Thanks
    Baba

    • BABA: If the dough doesn’t seem too stiff and dry, you will be fine. If it’s too dry, it won’t store well; you’ll need to use up within 3 days or so.

      To add water, float a quarter-cup on top overnight, most will absorb.

      I’m afraid I don’t understand your second question though; assume you understand that our dough is intended for storage in the fridge way beyond the two-hour initial rise? Jeff

  40. Jeff:
    what I mean’t by the second question is that I had left it longer then the 2 original hours required at the beginning to let it rise. I believe it was 3 hours and 15-20 minutes, but it seems ok though I have not baked it yet.
    Actually you brought up another point for me. I find that my dough has a crust on it in the refrigator where it is kept. I thought it was covered with the lid but it might have been open a bit. Should the lid be tightly sealed after the first day?
    So if my dough feels dry it is ok to just add 1/4 cup of water on top in the fridge witihout mixing it? Does this apply to any of the doughs?
    Thank you
    Baba

  41. Baba: I’ve left it overnight by accident; no harm.

    I generally snap on the plastic lid after 48 hours; by then, most gas formation is done. If you become aware of an “alcohol” smell in the bread, you should continue to vent very slightly. A little hole in the top works.

    To avoid the “skin,” you can decant into smaller containers as you use it up, but I don’t bother with that. In general, a “skin” means there’s too much air in the vessel, or too much air circulation. Or you’re not using the dough often enough.

    Usually that water trick works, but you don’t need to do it if the results you’re getting are fine. Jeff

  42. You mention problems with cutting cinnamon rolls if the dough is too warm. One trick that works well for me is to use dental floss. Take a long string and bring it from the back, cross in front and pull tight — makes a neat cut every time.

  43. I should have said caramel rolls. I’ve made two batches with the brioche and have my first with the Challah in the oven now for comparison purposes. The brioche produced the lightest caramel roll I’ve ever had.

  44. I just purchased two of your books, HIGHLY recommended from my mom who heard you guys speak. On page 76 of Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day, I decided my first loaf would be the 100% WW sand bread that I would make as a free form.
    It should be known baking does not come “naturally” for me, so on my second attempt, I was sure to follow all of the steps. I put my ingredients in a 16 cup container and let sit on counter about 5 hours. Container was one made to “steam” foods in microwave, so i snapped lid on and just let that top valve open (the hole was about the diameter of a pencil). It seemed to be rising ok on the counter, put it in refrigerator. Tonight came home to bake first loaf. My dough was crumbly and wet. Absolutely no way I could shape into a ball. It was almost like I soaked oats overnight. No bread characterisitcs at all. Mom was thinking my “vent” hole was too large.
    Any ideas of what might have caused this? I’d like to go for 3′s a charm tonight – with hopes of bread by Wednesday or Thursday night!
    thanks much.

    • Hi Amy,

      It sounds like your dough was just too dry for some reason? If you add more water to the dough, maybe a few tablespoons, it should be easier to handle and work with. When you mix in the water you will need to let the dough rest longer. One thing to keep in mind is that 100% whole wheat dough doesn’t have the same characteristics as dough made with white flour, so it will never have the same stretch to it.

      Thanks, Zoë

  45. I have both books and have always used the pumpernickel recipe in the first book. Today I want to make the whole grain pumpernickel in the second book, but I do not have a banneton or brotform. What can I do to substitute for that?

    • Chris, you don’t have to use a brotform, can just make the same way you did it for 1st book.

      People have substitute cheap plastic baskets (food-safe stuff only). Jeff

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