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Covering bread when rising

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
Most recipes call for using a dish towel or, occasionally, a moist towel to cover bread dough when it's rising in a bowl. However, several recipes I use specify using plastic wrap and sealing the bowl. Why the difference? What is the advantage of trapping the air in the bowl? It's not to keep the dough soft, since the dough was placed in a greased bowl, then turned over to grease the entire surface.
post #2 of 7
Covering the dough is not to trap air, it is to keep the surface of the dough from forming a skin.
post #3 of 7
Thread Starter 
But the top of the dough is greased. I would think that would keep it from forming a skin.
post #4 of 7
Greasing the bowl (and thus the dough) provides some protection from forming a skin as does using a damp (vs dry) towel. It really depends on the composition of the dough. Sweet doughs, and especially puff pastry really do better with plastic while bread doughs are ok ith just a damp towel. Unfortunately, I don't know why it works this way, only that, in my experience, it does. Any pastry chefs out there that can explain why?
post #5 of 7
The purpose of greasing the dough (and the bowl) is to keep the surface of the dough pliable as it rises, not specifically to prevent it from drying out. The purpose of using cling-wrap over the proofing bowl is to trap the humidity. Both work to prevent the harm which occurs when a skin forms.

Cling wrap is less messy and generally easier than a damp towel. It is less green.

If you wonder how effective covering is in preventing a skin, it's easy enough to find out. Proof your next bread dough in two batches -- one covered and the other open.

BDL
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post #6 of 7
you can always just cover the top with a dish, pan cover or use a plastic box (bench box)
bake first, ask questions later.
Oooh food, my favorite!


Professor Pastry Artswww.collin.edu
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bake first, ask questions later.
Oooh food, my favorite!


Professor Pastry Artswww.collin.edu
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post #7 of 7
Instead of being green and instead of using cling wrap, I simply cut a slit along one side of a bague plastique from Wally's and use it to cover my dough bowl. :roll:

Best and I'm a foodie.   I know very little but the little that I know I want to know very well.

 

-T

Brot und Wein
(1 photos)
 
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Best and I'm a foodie.   I know very little but the little that I know I want to know very well.

 

-T

Brot und Wein
(1 photos)
 
Reply
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