Chapter 22: BREAD FAULTS
A good bread should be judged by its volume, bloom, shape, color, texture,
sheen, moistness and flavor. In general, one should examine the external
area and the internal (crumb) area of the bread.
Bread faults can arise from many causes. Flour varies in grade, in gluten
content and quality. Color also varies and so does the maltose content. When
examining the faults in the loaf of bread, the temperature and timings,
methods of manipulation, addition of materials, errors in setting and timing
of machinery, all must be taken into account.
1. Lack of volume: The major causes of this fault are
- a dough that is too tight and with too little yeast
- too much salt will cause under ripening, conducive to small volume.
- flour with low maltose will produce bread of less than normal volume.
Over bleached flour or the excess use of chemical improvers, will also
produce this fault.
2. Excessive volume:
- low salt content
- excess final proof
- loose moulding
will produce a bread of excessive volume
Excess salt decreases the stability of gluten. An excessively slack dough
also produces a bread with excess volume. This can be adjusted by altering
the proving time. A cool oven causes fermentation to continue in the oven.
Therefore there will be too much oven spring.
3.Lack of Crust Color: Baking the bread in a cool oven renders the loaf
colorless. The other causes for lack of crust color may be:
- over ripe dough, due to extended fermentation period (all the sugar is
- excess water content
- lack of maltose
- lack of salt
1. Excess Crust Color: The likely causes are
- insufficient fermentation
- excessive use of sugar
- flour might have been milled from sprouted wheat (partially)
- baking too quickly and at too high a temperature
2. Shell Tops: This is due to the formation of a crust on top of the loaf
before maximum expansion has taken place. The pressure from within
the loaf exerts itself in such a way that the top of the loaf lifts in the
form of a lid.
3. Rough Surfaces: The crust of over fermented dough is always rough.
Use less yeast. Bad molding can also cause unsightly crust surfaces.
4. Collapsing Bread: Collapsing bread is caused by insufficient tensile
strength of the dough. Such dough is mainly due to too much water, malt
or gluten improvers. Other causes could be
- over proving
- baking in cold oven
- Disturbance of the dough before entering the oven.
Extraneous matter that may have been an accident, can lodge itself in the
mass of the dough. However there can be no excuse for dark smears caused
by dirty tin grease, finger marks or the dirt from unclean racks and boxes.
1. Holes in the crumb: A dough made from flour weak in gluten, especially
when the yeast content is high, will cause holes, because the gluten has
little power of gas retention and the weaker cells will break down during
baking. Faulty manipulation after bulk fermentation destroys the
elasticity of the gluten and therefore the expansion does not proceed
evenly, breakage occurs and large holes are formed in the mass.
2. Cores Seams Streaks and Condensation Marks: The most common
cause for cores is the incorporation of pellets or hard flour or dough
particles. Another common cause is the turning in of a dry skin when
moulding. Slight over proving or over malting often cause a core near the
bottom of the loaf.
Seams are dense layers of inedible bread. They are caused by
he careless handling when loading. Movement of the dough in the oven
during baking makes the delicate dough structure tremble and collapse
sufficiently to form a seam or a heavy uncooked layer.
Streaks are evidence of uneven manipulation of the dough in the final
stages. Loose moulding and insufficient final proof are also causes of
streaks. Dark streaks are also caused by high maltose flour.
Condensation marks are due to improper packing.
3. Damp Clammy or Close Crunch:
The common causes are:
- Use of high maltose flour, milled from sprouted wheat.
- Overloading the dough with enriching agents
- Use of very weak flour
- Over machining the dough
- Wrapping the bread prematurely
- Development of a ropy condition
4. Crumbliness: A slack dough will produce crumbly bread. Crumbliness is
related to the degree of fermentation. If the fermentation is
insufficient, then the gluten is not conditioned and the crumb has
neither the resilience nor tensile strength necessary to whit stand the
action of cutting the loaf. Excessive mineral improvers also cause