Ever feel the urge to have freshly baked bread for a meal or a dinner party, only to discover that the only dough in your house is frozen solid? There are several ways to fast-thaw your frozen dough so that you are not stuck waiting the typical four to five hours it takes for bread to traditionally defrost to room temperature.
Put your frozen bread dough in a large sealed bag. Fill your sink full of hot water, then place the dough in the water. You may have to change the water a few times if the frozen bread makes the water too cool. Make sure the bag is sealed against the water. This method can cut the thawing time in half, but be careful that the water is not so hot that you activate the yeast in the dough!
Turn your oven to its lowest setting, no more than 175 degrees, and put the bread in the oven on a cookie sheet. If you take the loaves out and turn them every so often you will speed up the defrosting process even more. This process should take an hour or so, but be careful to turn the loaves frequently to avoid uneven defrosting.
One way to defrost anything in a hurry is by using the microwave. Place your loaves on a microwave-safe plate and use your auto-defrost button on your microwave. By rotating the bread and checking its progress often, you shall have defrosted bread dough in a short length of time—using the lowest power setting, put the loaf in for 5 to 8 minutes, and repeat this cycle as often as is needed, with 10 to 15 minutes between cycles. This is a great way to quick-defrost bread dough, but with most microwaves you will need to be careful, because some tend to have hot spots that will cause certain parts of your dough to defrost faster than others.