Preferment

Dough pre-fermentation is a technique in baking where a portion of the dough’s ingredients, such as flour, water, and yeast, are fermented separately before mixing into the main dough. Common methods include Poolish, Biga, and sourdough starters, each contributing to enhanced flavor, texture, and structure in the final baked product. This pre-fermentation process promotes the development of complex flavors, improves the dough’s texture by breaking down carbohydrates and proteins, and can extend the bread’s shelf life due to natural preservatives produced during fermentation.

Pre-fermentation methods include Poolish, Biga, Sourdough Starter, Pâte Fermentée (Old Dough), Sponge and Dough Method, Levain, and Ripened Dough.