Along with beer production, bread production is one of the oldest fermentation processes in the history of food. Fermentation has been around for a long time, because any dough made of flour and water left on its own for a long time is acidified by bacteria present in the flour. Findings from Egypt and Greece show that fermented dough already existed 1,800 years before our time.
Over time, many fermentation processes emerged, based on practical experience and observation. However, with wheat and rye, these numerous variations can be traced back to two principles: single step (e.g. one-step Detmold process) and multi-step processes (e.g. three-step Detmold process – Panettone production). Both methods have advantages and disadvantages.
A baker is actually a biotechnologist, as he cultivates lactic acid bacteria and yeast in his yeast dough fermentation. Depending on the microflora and on the type of yeast used, there are some basic rules to follow. The most important thing is to maintain the correct temperature. Choosing the right temperature depends on the type of microflora used. Equally important is the amount of yeast and the respecting of the correct fermentation times. This applies to all stages of sourdough fermentation to avoid problems, such as less ripe sourdough. The type of process, whether one-step or multiple steps, will define the operational requirements, and both can guarantee a high-quality yeast dough if followed correctly.
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