Windowpane. Does anyone use that term anymore? It means a pane of glass in a window.
Bet you’re wondering how this ties into baking. Drumroll…..
Let me introduce you to a little bread making hack called the windowpane test.
People use the windowpane test to determine if they have kneaded their dough long enough. If you have, there will be a strong gluten development.
How can you determine a strong gluten development?........ The windowpane test.
How to do the windowpane test: Take a piece of dough about the size of a golf ball. Gently spread your thumbs and forefingers apart until you have a translucent membrane. If it gets that thin without tearing, it has strong enough gluten development. If not, put it back with the rest of the dough, continue to knead for a few minutes, and try the window pane test again after about 15 minutes.
As with all rules, this one is made to be broken. If it doesn’t work that doesn’t mean it won’t bake a good loaf of bread.
As you bake more bread, the look and feel of the dough will become more intuitive and you might find you no longer need the windowpane test.
All for now,