In a post from 28 July 2007 (link), I mentioned date paste being able to increase the volume of a finished loaf. 4% of date paste helped baking an airier loaf, more than 4% decreased loaf volume again. Trivially, when adding an ingredient to a bread dough (i.e. flour, water, yeast and salt in certain proportions), it can either have a positive, a negative or no effect at all. And if the first case is true, there must be a certain point, at which this effect is reversed, yielding inferior voume – for example when adding 200% of honey to the dough.
I don’t know if the “point of no return” is really a point or more of a plateau and if so, how wide it is, however it seems logical that a huge amount of “weird stuff” in our dough will not improve it.
In a book for aspiring German bakers (amazon link) there is a formula for an all-natural and organic dough improver for bakers who do not wish to rely on the chemical substances found in traditional (in use since World War II) improvers. The book says to add this to a basic white dough in a quantity of 3% in relation to total flour weight. Oven spring was drastic. In terms of loaf volume a success. The flavor is that of a plain loaf made within two hours with the difference that it may carry more roasting aromas because of the added sugars.
- 10g bio honey
- 10g bio butter
- 9.5 bio orange juice
- 0.5g dried bio egg yolk (I used 10g fresh bio egg yolk)
Organic Whole Wheat Toast Loaf (1 loaf)
- 300g organic strong white flour
- 100g organic whole-wheat flour
- 260g warm water
- 6g fresh (bio) yeast
- 8g sea salt
- 12g bio bread improver (16g if fresh egg yolk is used)
Bulk Fermentation.45 minutes
Final Fermentation.60-75 minutes
Bake-Off. Bake for 10 minutes at 240°, reduce heat to 210°C and bake for further 30 minutes. Turn off oven and take out bread 5-10 minutes later.