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Thread: Cold counter tops

  1. #1
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    Cold counter tops

    I have a new counter top that can be quite cold to the touch. I made bread the other day and was afraid that kneading the bread on that cool surface would make the dough too cold and cause the yeast to get too cold too. So I put some large pans filled with hot water on the surface to warm it up.

    Am I being too cautious? Or, does anyone else deal with these cold surfaces?
    Penny

  2. #2
    Super Member Chasing Hawk's Avatar
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    According to this site cold counter-tops are good for pastry making and pie crusts. Warming your counter sounds like a good idea. This site says a good wooden cutting board is great for bread making.

    http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/7263/kneading-surface
    Last edited by Chasing Hawk; 12-27-2017 at 12:39 PM.
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  3. #3
    Super Member SouthPStitches's Avatar
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    I leave in the northeast and often, household temps are cool enough that it impedes the bread products rising. I usuallyl make the dough in my breadmaker on the dough setting. After forming into pans, I then put the pans on a heating pad and put tea towels over the pans (medium setting). Within 45-60 minutes, the product is ready to go into the oven. Many years ago we had a heated water bed. Would lay a large towel on top of the bed quit, then nestle the bread pans onto the towel, finally covering with a couple of tea towels. That worked like a charm also.

    Incidentally, I store my yeast in the freezer with no problem. Literally keeps for years and performs well. Have taken frozen bread dough out of the freezer, greased the bread pans and let it thaw and rise in the refrigerator. It all works, just takes longer.

  4. #4
    Power Poster QuiltE's Avatar
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    I found that the best place for dough to rise in my home is
    under the warmth of the lights in the fan above my stove.


    Now, you all have me thinking, "Make Bread!"
    ..... but with no yeast in the house, not going to happen.
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  5. #5
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    Just an FYI:

    Be careful of setting pans that are too hot on the counters. If there is already a fissure in the counter top it can cause a crack right through. In other words, be careful of significant temperature changes.

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    I live in the northeast and my counters are cool to the touch in winter. When I knead dough, I don't do it long enough to inhibit rising. When I want to let dough rise, I preheat my oven for a minute or two before covering and setting dough to rise in it.

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    Just sharing--I made some of the crockpot peanut clusters to take to my daughter's for Christmas. When we finally came to a point that people were looking for sweets after dinner, they were soft. The container had been sitting on the countertop above the dishwasher and was warm enough to soften the chocolate!! Oops!

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    nothing to do with counter top, but I place a rack over my sink, fill the sink with hot water and put my bowl with dough on top of rack with tea towel on top....when the water cools, I put more hot water in the sink......In the summer the air condition is too cool for dough rising....I cover the bowl with a tea towel and put it in my car with windows up.....boy it rises fast...perfect....my husband and his family think I'm crazy....but they sure make short work of the rolls!

  9. #9
    Power Poster Onebyone's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by QuiltE View Post
    I found that the best place for dough to rise in my home is
    under the warmth of the lights in the fan above my stove.


    Now, you all have me thinking, "Make Bread!"
    ..... but with no yeast in the house, not going to happen.
    Keep yeast in the freezer. I have a l lb package of yeast in the freezer that I use that is over 8 years old and still active.
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  10. #10
    Super Member meanmom's Avatar
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    I don't think kneading your bread on a cold counter top would hurt it. I store yeast dough in the refrigerator for days and it is fine. The only thing it might do to it is your dough might rise a little bit slower. I make caramel rolls all the time and store the rolls in the refrigerator before baking them.
    Bread sounds good. It is cold here, I might have to make some today.

  11. #11
    Power Poster Onebyone's Avatar
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    I do all my bread kneading and shaping on parchment paper sprinkled with flour. I don't like to have the mess on my counter top to clean up. My counter tops are butcher block so it seems to be room temp. I let my dough rise in a pre heated low warmed oven.

    Tip: If parchment paper won't lay flat, wad it up and then smooth it out. Lays flat on the counter and on a cookie sheet.
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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mkotch View Post
    I live in the northeast and my counters are cool to the touch in winter. When I knead dough, I don't do it long enough to inhibit rising. When I want to let dough rise, I preheat my oven for a minute or two before covering and setting dough to rise in it.
    I just turn on the oven light,it warms the oven very well also the dough. Did just the light to rise my pizza dough on Sunday.

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    Thanks, everyone, for the info. Interesting how we always make do!
    Penny

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    What kind of yeast do you use?

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    You got lots of great advice already.

    I have an oversized wooden cutting board that I use for kneading bread dough and rolling pie crust. My house is on the cools side and I never have any problem with dough rising. If the room is too cold, it will take longer for the dough to rise, but it will eventually rise, even in a fridge.

    I too, make cinnamon buns the night before and leave in the fridge overnight.

    I also keep yeast in the fridge or freezer, it does not harm the yeast for it to be kept cold. I use a brick of yeast every 6 months or so.
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    Quote Originally Posted by QuiltE View Post
    I found that the best place for dough to rise in my home is
    under the warmth of the lights in the fan above my stove.
    I let my dough rise in the microwave. Works perfectly. I make the dough in the biggest Tupperware bowl I have. (Holds a gallon or two. Large "That's A Bowl"?) Then I put a large glass of water into the microwave and get it boiling. Set this hot glass of water into the back corner and put the bowl of dough into the microwave. Close the door and set a timer. The dough rises faster in this warm moist environment.
    If it starts to run over, it makes a mess, but it doesn't hurt the dough. Don't ask me how I know that. That's why I use the timer.
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  17. #17
    Super Member SusieQOH's Avatar
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    I love making dough and appreciate all these great ways to make it rise!
    Sorry I have no advice about cold counters though.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by maviskw View Post
    I let my dough rise in the microwave. Works perfectly. I make the dough in the biggest Tupperware bowl I have. (Holds a gallon or two. Large "That's A Bowl"?) Then I put a large glass of water into the microwave and get it boiling. Set this hot glass of water into the back corner and put the bowl of dough into the microwave. Close the door and set a timer. The dough rises faster in this warm moist environment.
    If it starts to run over, it makes a mess, but it doesn't hurt the dough. Don't ask me how I know that. That's why I use the timer.
    Holy Cow! How big is that microwave?
    Penny

  19. #19
    Super Member QuiltingNinaSue's Avatar
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    I knead the bread dough in my Kitchen Aid mixer with a dough hook. I turn my oven light on,and its warm enough to rise the bread without any heat setting.

    My microwave is large enough to cook a small turkey in it...up to about 16 pounds. Just 15 minutes, turn, repeat until all sides are done. Put paprika on the turkey before putting it in the microwave. Use to do it before we took our youngest to the baby sitter before school started. She wanted some food for him from time to time and that was quick and easy to do. I only used butter ball turkeys.

  20. #20
    Senior Member leighway's Avatar
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    I do the same thing and I also use my microwave when I make cultured vegetables...it's a nice cozy environment. We no longer use the microwave for cooking because of the negative effects on the nutrition in the food, so I'm pleased to have a use for it.


    Quote Originally Posted by maviskw View Post
    I let my dough rise in the microwave. Works perfectly. I make the dough in the biggest Tupperware bowl I have. (Holds a gallon or two. Large "That's A Bowl"?) Then I put a large glass of water into the microwave and get it boiling. Set this hot glass of water into the back corner and put the bowl of dough into the microwave. Close the door and set a timer. The dough rises faster in this warm moist environment.
    If it starts to run over, it makes a mess, but it doesn't hurt the dough. Don't ask me how I know that. That's why I use the timer.

  21. #21
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    Loved hearing all the ideas, I also have a cold kitchen and love making bread. I put it in the oven the pilot light is a bit warmer than my kitchen. Bread does rise in a cool environment it just takes a longer time. Enjoy your yummy bread
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  22. #22
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    I have stone counters that are cool too. I knead and shape my bread on a large cutting board, which is actually made out of compressed rubber, so it's not cold. (Cheap item, got it in a restaurant supply store many years ago.) It's also very easy to clean up. I just take the board over to the sink and the counters stay relatively clean.

    Making bread is a 2-day process for me. I don't use packaged yeast anymore...just starter. I keep that in the fridge and take it out the night before to warm up and come to life. The next morning, I add flour and water to the starter and let it sit and bubble half the day. I then put some starter back in the jar and into the fridge for future use. I add more flour and water to the rest and let it sit and bubble over the afternoon. I make my dough and put in the fridge over night. The next morning, I cover the top fo the dough with oil and a cloth, then let it rise in the oven with just the pilot light for warmth and then bake it. The bread rises better when I take my time and it's also much more flavorful and sour tasting. I make bread a couple of times a week this way. Once you get the timing down, it's easy.

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  23. #23
    Super Member QuiltnLady1's Avatar
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    When I make bread, I use my Kitchen Aide mixer with a dough hook to do the kneading. I let it rest covered on the countertop for about 20 minutes. I then shape the bread and put it in the refrigerator for at least hours up to about 48 hours, then I bake it. I have one recipe that I have to make in a more traditional fashion, but I do use the mixer then put it in the oven (now I have a proof setting, but I used to heat the oven to 200 while I was mixing the bread and then turned the oven off before I put the bread in it). I had a friend who complained that she could not make this bread -- she assumed since I put it in the refrigerator she set it in front of an open window and her bread fell flat....
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