How to Proof Dough Quickly in Winter
Bread making is really satisfying, and the smell of dough baking over winter is so comforting. But, how do you proof dough in winter?
Yeast is the active rising agent in bread and this living organism likes a warm humid environment. So proofing bread in winter can be a challenge!
Once we understand how to create the ideal bread microenvironment, the breadmaking process becomes much simpler and quicker. You can employ these quick proofing methods in summer, to get an even quicker proofing time.
Tips to Speed up Dough Proofing
- Always use warm water or milk in the dough. 37.5 degrees Celsius or
- Prime the yeast 5 -10 min prior to commencing the breading making. (See priming technique here)
- Cover the dough and ferment in a warm sunny place away from draughts like a window.
- Cover and place the bowl of dough in a sink of warm water.
- Turn the oven on to its lowest setting 50 degrees Celsius. Once heated turn the oven off and place the bowl of dough in the oven (covered) Close the oven door.
- Place the covered dough in the car and par the car in the sun
- Place a bowl of water in the microwave. Heat for 2 minutes. Push the hot water to the side and add the covered dough to the microwave. close the microwave door so that the steam from the hot water heats the dough.
How long do you need to Proof Dough?
This is a difficult question to answer as there is no set length of time. The time of the proof depends on the microenvironment which has been provided to the yeast. You will know the dough is sufficiently proofed when it has doubled in size and looks soft and airy. This may occur quickly in warm temperatures or more slowly in cooler temperatures. You need to always ensure that the dough is proofed sufficiently in the first and second proofing to make a successful yeast-based product.
Dough Proof Note
Even though I am outlining techniques to proof dough quicker, the tastiest doughs are those which proof slowly. It may appear that your dough isn’t active in the colder temperatures but it will still proof. It will just be slower. If you have time to wait for the process to occur naturally you will be rewarded with a nicer tasting end product.
- Avoid letting the dough reach above 45degrees celsius or 110 Fahrenheit as the temperatures will kill the yeast.