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freezing bread dough

I'm making Ken Forkish's whole wheat bread (from the book flout water salt yeast) lately. it's incredible, but normally i half the recipe since i don't want two loaves (all his recipes are for 2 loaves). last week i used the full recipe, planning on freezing one. the first one (no freezing) came out beautiful, literally perfect. the second i shaped and froze. i defrosted it in the fridge last night, put it in the loaf pan this morning and let it proof, but it wasn't proofing as well as it should. after 3 hours it seemed proofed according to the finger dent test even though it hadn't risen so much... i put it in the oven anyway. i rose only about half as much as it should and came out small. any ideas how to freeze it better in the future? i've heard of needing to double the amount of yeast, or use active instead of instant yeast etc...any advice on freezing bread dough?

asked by CanadaDan 12 months ago
3 answers 658 views
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added 12 months ago

I have no experience with freezing bread dough but I often bake an extra loaf and freeze it. I wrap it in plastic wrap followed by aluminum foil and sometimes put it in a freezer bag as well.

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added 12 months ago

I second this. I've never frozen dough but I often freeze half a loaf of bread. I've recently started freezing individual slices, wrapping in aluminum foil, then plastic wrap, then a freezer bag (as per Lionel Vatinet's A Passion For Bread cookbook). I heat the slices up in the aluminum foil in the toaster oven and they're great and not dried out!

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Nancy is a trusted home cook.

added 12 months ago

For longer-term keeping of bread (when I make a big recipe and don't need all of it at once), my solutions are to store the unbaked dough (punching down as needed) in the fridge and bake later. Or bake and store finished loaf or rolls in freezer.
This article from Red Star Yeast partially explains why it's harder for home bakers than for commercial ones to get good results with frozen unbaked yeast dough.
(Also searched King Arthur Flour site, but had trouble locating their freezing advice.)
The one frozen-unbaked type of recipe I've had success with is baking powder biscuits...they really do puff up when after being taken raw from freezer straight to oven.