Skip to main content

A Soft Bun is a Soft Bun

Exactly, that's why they call it Soft Bun. Referring to Hamburger Buns, Hotdog Buns, Pan de Limon, Pan de Agua, Pan de everything else that is supposed to be soft, meaning edible soft for a sandwich or plain snacking, without putting it in a toaster to make it again, soft.

One of my students told me her Soft Buns gets moldy in 2 days, and i say no way. The recipe that i have does not have any Calcium Propionate, no anti-mold of some sort and they stay fresh for 5 days. After 5 days, spots of greenish mold starts to appear at the bottom of the buns and you know it has ended its stay on earth. Which is just about the average shelf life of yeast dough breads, it has nothing to do with your formula, it is just how Mother Nature intended it to be.

What commercial bakeries do is to use an anti-mold to keep it mold free for up to ahem, you know how many days ( i might get sued over this). Incidentally, it is amazing how many law firm ads are here in the US, more than shampoo commercials in the Philippines and i thought Sunsilk and Palmolive own tv networks. Please, i cannot afford a lawsuit, in just 3 weeks i managed to crash my laptop, and just this morning, my cellphone went dead so have a heart. Okay back to the breads, I can tell you this, i have experimented on store bought breads and some of them stay without molds for weeks. That bad. Now you know why a petite girl like me is into breads. I have nightmares that they talk to me while i sleep. See the Tales from the Crypt where Stephen King got all moldy??? Yeah, that one.

Which brings me back to the topic of rock hard, brittle dry soft buns still being sold in groceries. Well, if it ain't moldy, then it might be good. So you grab a pack of 6 and you slice it open. You know what's next. What happens is that the moisture in the bread and in all of your baked products evaporate into thin air during storage, or while they are in your grocery shelves. They will not mold, nope, but they will simply dry out.

So what makes this Soft Bun so delicious especially when it is fresh? What makes it so soft?
The secret is in the water. I must say that from experience, the more water i use in the dough, as seen in the second image below, the softer the buns are. If you use less water (which happens when you use that nasty dough roller) then you reduce the hydration level of the dough, ergo, less volume, less tenderizing effect. Water is your all natural softener, it does not cost you more than a cent per cup, and it is sugar free. Whew! I have to take 2 years of Culinary Study to know that huh.

The kind of flour you have determines how much water your dough will absorb. Obviously this batch has risen so well, the volume is perfect because the amount of water was maximized during mixing. That is how i look at it. When i moved to the US last February, i have to adjust the water level, reducing it to as much as 30% because the quality of the gluten is just not at par with the ones i use back home. Disappointing but that is how bread making is all about. You adopt to the many changes day in and day out and learn how to trouble shoot when a problem occurs. Amen.

Observe how soft the dough is, not forming a rounded ball the same way a pizza dough behaves, but there is a tail left at the bottom of the mixing bowl.

Once again, seeing these images makes me want to go home right away to my mixer in New York and back home to the Philippines. The buns maintain their shape, which is very important, although they looked puffed up, they SHOULD RISE MORE when you bake them, around 10 minutes during baking time.

The baked Soft Buns with Sesame Seeds. Buns did not collapse, no shrinking which happens if you over proof them.

Buns are now snugly close to each other which happens during baking. You need at least half a centimeter of space between each buns during load time to create this effect. Takes practice but it is worth it.

Will post more on this in the future...

Best bread flour i have tried so far, Pendleton from Restaurant Depot sold in LA. Restaurant Depot also has this baking rack and rack cover that are reasonably priced if you can get inside. I think you can have at least a one day pass to buy something but you need a business registration to be able to do more shopping inside.

Barryfarm so far has the cheapest instant yeast and dough enhancer compared to the other vendors in the internet, and my students seem to think so too.


Popular posts from this blog

3rd Class Flour, What's It All About

For starters i cannot make this Hard Monay if i did not bring any 3rd class flour or soft weak flour to New York. Once i ran out of 3rd class and tried Cake Flour, it turned bad, do not even think of using All Purpose, it will be soft but not chewy as this one made with yes, 3rd class indeed. So third class is hard to find here in the US if you will use that term. You have to say or look for soft wheat flour, that's it, not hard wheat flour, not cake or All purpose but something in between these two. It is easy to find in the Phil., just ask your local bakery suppliers and they know it is Tercera. Tercera is not for bread, bakers use it basically for cookies, cakes and other pastries, but we bakers know how to create bread recipes using part of this flour with the bread flour or hard wheat flour. It makes a softer version of any of your fave breads, with a cheaper price tag. Plus if i own a bakery, i get to use the third class for my cakes and cookies, lowering my food cost i…

Baking Pandesal, Once Again on Proofing

I finished my one one one last August, fortunately my student arrived and made it on time before i left or went back to New York. Originally, she was asking for a September 23 to 27 date and since my flight was September 7, i had to decline her request.

I was surprised to hear from her a couple of days later when she changed her mind and decided to go home so she can catch up with me. Paid her deposit and we set the date. 3 days later, she sent me a photo of one of her cook, badly burned and all bandaged up from the hospital. Class postpone. I prayed for her that she gets well so my student can still make it. I was thinking, she would have to wait till December and well, December being a busy month, i have a feeling we will not make it and i have to return her deposit.

Praise G-d, she made it and we had a really really fun session. Her goal was to bake Pandesal and Ensaimada. She has a restaurant in Taiwan and she caters to Pinoys there selling Chicken Inasal which judging from her st…

July Session

This is the only session I had so far where i used 2 different brands of flour which is Globe by Universal Robina and Sun Moon Star by Pilmico.Now, if you have attended my class, and I know some of my former students still read my blog then you know that i preach water and adore first class flours with a high protein content. Anything that is lower than my expected level is out of the book just like this popular brand I will call Brit (not it's real name). If you know your history and you bake breads, you know what this brand is. Now, you can certainly email me so I can divulge to you in secret what this horrible I mean disappointing brand of first class is.First off, it does not deserve it's price tag. Too expensive for an over P800.00 per sack flour when a P720.00 sack can use up more water. Why is that important? Well, too long to discuss but I hope your teacher can tell you why. If not, then you went to the wrong school.So here I am, using my student's flour ( they alr…