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Why does my homemade bread split on the side when I bake it?

Last post Feb 14, 2011 2:14 PM by Kerry Amundson . 11 replies.


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  • Why does my homemade bread split on the side when I bake it?
    I can't figure out why my homemade breads have started splitting on the side as they bake. I thought it might be rising too much on the second rise so tried to let it rise a little less and still have the problem. It happens with my whole wheat loaf recipes.
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  • RE: Why does my homemade bread split on the side when I bake it?
    You may have had either too much yeast, too much flour, or too much water. Another possibility could be your yeast wasn't dissolved in water before adding it to your flour.

    My bread has split in times past and it was because I used too much flour, especially when I didn't have bread flour and used an all purpose type and used too much.

    It usually occurs because the bread rises to fast and begins to dry out while cooking and as the inside cooks it swells/rises and pushes on the bread.
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  • RE: Why does my homemade bread split on the side when I bake it?
    Underproofing is another reason why this will happen — but honestly, I think sometimes it's because we didn't hold our mouthes right when we put the bread in the oven!
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  • RE: Why does my homemade bread split on the side when I bake it?
    Oftentimes if you are making 100% whole wheat, it will help to put dough enhancer in with the flour, also some wheat gluten. The dough enhancer helps with the structure of the dough and keeps it from collapsing. You can find this at kitchen specialty stores, Bosch kitchen stores and maybe even at health food stores. If you can find SAF yeast, you won't even have to dissolve it in water first. You can order it from King Arthur Flour. (dough enhancer and gluten are both powders)
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  • Re: Why does my homemade bread split on the side when I bake it?

     

    ....and one more reason ;-)

    If the shaped dough isn't covered with a lightly oiled plastic wrap while it's rising in the pan a crust may start to form.  When oven spring occurs  - the last bit of rising in the oven heat before the heat kills the yeast - the bread can't rise normally on top and the sides will crack to allow the expansion.

     

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  • Re: Why does my homemade bread split on the side when I bake it?
    There are two common reasons bread splits. One is not enough gluten in the flour. Gluten gives the dough its elasticity. Thats why I tell people to use bread flour or high gluten flour. I know I will be lambasted for this, but most all purpose flours don't have enough gluten. Also, you have top keep the surface of the dough moist. That's why proof boxes in bakeries have high humidity, usually 70- 80%. What I do at home is put the dough in the oven and turn it on the lowest setting for about 3 minutes. In the mean time, heat about 2 C water in the microwave until its boiling. Put it in a pan next to the dough or below it. Don't cover the dough with plastic because it keeps the moisture off the surface of the dough. And another trick to home baking is when you put the bread in to bake, pour about 1/2 C of water on the bottom of the oven and close the door. This steam will moisturize the bread and will give you a nice crust.
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    When the tides of life are against you

    And the current upsets your boat

    Don't think of things that might have been

    Just lay on your back and float

            Ed Norton     1954

     The Honeymooners

     

  • Re: Why does my homemade bread split on the side when I bake it?

    I love Jetfan's suggestion about using the water when dough is rising and throwing some in the bottom when baking.  It works the best!!  I am wondering if you have some kind of protection on the bottom of your oven.  Don't know if the water would cause rusting?  Probably a dumb question!!  My French bread & rolls have come out the best since doing this.

    Thank You for sending that idea along.

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  • Re: Why does my homemade bread split on the side when I bake it?
    I am so glad this works for you. And I don't put anything on the bottom and my wife always yells at me. What I am always meaning to do is put some tin foil on the bottom under the element, but always forget. I will do it today because you reminded me. Thanks.
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    When the tides of life are against you

    And the current upsets your boat

    Don't think of things that might have been

    Just lay on your back and float

            Ed Norton     1954

     The Honeymooners

     

  • Re: Why does my homemade bread split on the side when I bake it?

    Got a chuckle out of your reply, jetfan!  I think foil is a good idea and I need to do that also.  Did the self-cleaning 'thing' on my oven yesterday so a good time to start.  I know some of them 'speciality' catalogs have things you can buy to put on the bottom of the oven but foil should work well.  Maybe I better do that also!!

    Have a good week--------got up to 44 in our part of Iowa today and seems like spring.  All the melting will just make room for more snow probably??  This can't last but we're enjoying it while we can.

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  • Re: Why does my homemade bread split on the side when I bake it?

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  • Re: Why does my homemade bread split on the side when I bake it?

     I bake in a gas range and use an old 9" X 13" pan I on the bpttom  and heat it with the oven. Pur bread in the oven. In the meantime I have  heated some water to a boil in a tea kettle and using a long handled ladle I put 1 cup of boiling water into the hot pan and immediately close the oven door. Whe I have 5 loaves in the oven I repeat the boiling water treatment 15 minutes later.

    You can't throw water into a hot gas range, it will put out the gas flames and is dangerous. In an electric oven I would put one rack as low as possible and set the pan with the boiling water on it.

    About an hour before I put bread into the oven to rise I turn on the oven light. It heats the oven enough to be a proof box. With a pan with vwery hot water in the bottom of the oven it brings the moisture up while the bread is rising.

    In our bakery we had steam injection into the proofing cabinets and the large brick ovens had steam injection.

     

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  • Re: Why does my homemade bread split on the side when I bake it?

     When I first started baking bread years ago I did not pinch the seam tight enough. And if you do not place the seam side down it tends to move and then the loaf will split. Lately I have just been making beer bread. The dough is "shaggy" and you just pour it into your loaf pan. No seams and no splitting!

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