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Measurement


David802
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Ok, Where I work we do everything in pounds (I'm told its more accurate), my problem is I wana make some of the breads at home that I have seen at work, but well I dont have the equipment to mix a 8 gallon white bread (8 gallons of water, 100 lbs of flour(About) 1 lb yeast brick, 50 lbs of starter, 2 lbs of salt) and so forth...you may be able to see my problem if you have ever seen just how much dough that really is, So my question is what (if any) is the conversion ratio from lbs to cups, I mean I know you cant do it exactly, there different measurement types, but there has to be a thing like 3 cups of flour is equal to about 1 lb of flour?

If anyone can awnser my longwinded question let me know.

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You may also want to try converting the original formula into baker's percentage and weighing your ingredients instead of using volume measures (a good scale for home use is not expensive.) Using this technique, flour is always 100% and other ingredients are calculated as a percentage of flour. Once you know the ratios, it is easy to scale a formula up or down. Here's an example using your formula:

Flour (100 lbs.) = 100%

Water (8 gallons @8.3 lbs per gallon = 66.4 gallons) = 66.4% (say 66%)

Yeast (1 lb.) = 1%

Salt (2 lbs.) = 2%

any other ingredients would be calculated the same way.

If you wanted to scale this back to 2 lbs. of flour, you'd add 1.32 lbs. of water (66% of 2), etc. etc.

You'll have to include the starter ingredients as well. One of the posters in this forum, Glennbech, has developed this conversion tool that you might find helpful.

Once I learned about baker's percentage and used it a few times, life became easier. :smile:

Ilene

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I would break the recipe down as chefpeon states or convert to bakers percentages as Beanie states, but I wouldn't necessarily convert it over to cups. Weight is more accurate. For not a lot of money, you can invest in a home scale and keep on using the weight for accuracy, just not making that gigantic batch of dough....

But, if you still want to convert it, I use the site chefpeon mentioned, with great results.

Cheryl, The Sweet Side
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I think I understand what beanie said...but where did he get this "@8.3 lbs per gallon "

that part dosent makes sense, the other stuff makes sense, but why 8.3 lbs per gallon ?

is that something I Dont no? like how much a gallon of water weighs?

also beanie what do you mean the starter ingrediants, couldent I just do a percent off of the flour for that to?

please remember I've never been to any kind of baking school, I'm 16, and I have a job as an assistant baker, thats turned to a hobbie I enjoy at home as well.

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There is an old saying "A pint's a pound the world around". So a pint of water weighs a pound. There are 8 pints in a gallon, so a gallon of water weighs 8 pounds. I haven't weighed a full gallon myself, so I think the extra .3 is because the EXACT weight of a gallon of water is 8.3 pounds.

Edited to add -- this works for water only. Because fat is less dense than water, a pint of cream, for example, does not weight a pound. Nor does a pint of honey, or vegetable oil, nor milk... you get the drift.

Edited by SweetSide (log)
Cheryl, The Sweet Side
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David802,

As SweetSide said, a gallon of water weights 8.3 lbs. (I just noticed my gallon calculation above says 66.4 gallons when it should say pounds. :wacko: ).

I didn't realize you were only 16 and am really impressed at your motivation and passion. I don't want to present information that will complicate things and turn you off.

Your original post said that the bread formula at work included 50 pounds of starter. Do you know the starter ingredients and weights? You can include them in the overall list of ingredients and percents. If you play with Glennbech's calculator tool, you can enter the ingredients in the starter and the dough and you'll see the percentages calculated automatically. There's a feature at the bottom that enables you to scale it back. If you scale it back to only .10 you'll get a recipe that calls for about 13 lbs. flour total.

I encourage you to read the numerous eG threads on bread baking. Here are a few:

Baking with the Bread Baker's Apprentice

Dan Lepard's book & bread

There are many excellent books available as well. I especially like Reinhart's Bread Baker's Apprentice and Jeffrey Hamelman's "Bread, A Baker's Book of Techniques and Recipes."

Good luck.

Edited to add: What kind of yeast are you using? 1 oz. of fresh yeast (about a tablespoon) is equivalent to 0.4 oz. active dry yeast (about 1.25 tsp.) and 0.33 oz instant yeast (about 1 tsp.)

Edited by Beanie (log)

Ilene

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The yeast we use comes wrapped in a plastic wrap, and is like a brick....I Think its fresh yeast but I could very well be wrong...

I will have to remember A pint's a pound the world around. I dident no...but that will make life easer..

Thanks for all you guys help...I Will deffinatly read those links you posted..

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The yeast we use comes wrapped in a plastic wrap, and is like a brick....I Think its fresh yeast but I could very well be wrong...

...

Yep, that's fresh yeast. Active dry and instant are both more granules that you can "pour".

Cheryl, The Sweet Side
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The bakers persentage is the best method to go by. How ever you break down your recipe I wouldnt guarentee that it will be the same as quality as what you made commerically. You might have to make it a few times and made changes to achieve something like you make at work.

Before I bought my scale at home I commonly took the recipes I made professionally and used the Book of Yields (see link) to convert the recipes to cups, teaspoons, etc. Time consuming yes, but it worked (and I already had the book from school), and this is what you will have to due if you want to share professional recipes with the home baker.

Note** - I agree with the notion that weighing your ingredients for a recipe is more accurate, but dont be so quick to assume that thats the best way or thats how all professionals do it. Of couse its easier (and more accurate) to weigh out 20 pounds of flour, as apposed to mesuring that same amount in cups. But if you are in a restaurant and making small quanities of something its not a bad thing (and some of the top restaurants I worked at in NYC do it) to use cup mesurements. Although there are some ingredients (baking powder, salt, yeast, etc) when I think that one paticular ingredient is good to weigh out. Many resturants find recipes/ideas online or in cookbooks and change them around to fit a flavor profile or idea that they have in mind. Commonly these recipes were written for the home user.

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Oh, the British just need to be difficult and one up us on the size of things.... :raz:

UK measures are bigger than US measures (don't know the background of the difference), but the same holds true for cups, teaspoons, quarts, gallons, etc. I forgot about that when I used the quote...

Cheryl, The Sweet Side
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