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Old 09-29-2013, 12:45 PM
okn okn is offline
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Default In search of bread baking tips

Well I double jays recipe found at post 17:

http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/11/m...h-17654-2.html (My first attempt at bread and making sourdough starter.)

And the results can be seen in the pictures. Here are some of the tips/pointers I am looking for:

1) Do I need to slash deeper? I'm using a razor, does anything else work much better?

2) What's the best way to transfer from where the dough is proofing to the peel? It seems as I am deflating the dough as it is somewhat sticky and doesn't transfer all that easy.

3) What's the best way to load the oven?? I know my oven is small, but throwing them in there seems challenging. I see others with all their loaves lined up perfectly and it makes me wonder how they are doing it. I always seem to be rushing trying to get the loaves in as fast as possible.

As you can see in the pictures, one of the loaves (picture 3) looks like it had a weird blowout, however, that was caused by it sticking a bit to the peel when I launched it.


Any advice or constructive criticism would be greatly appreciated!

Kevin
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  #2  
Old 09-29-2013, 03:31 PM
TropicalCoasting's Avatar
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Default Re: In search of bread baking tips

Looks good and I bet it tastes good
I will keep and eye on this thread for tips too but it seems what you are doing is ok by me
Razor blade is what I use
I would call the blown one a split vienna and not worry
http://www.ourdailybread.com.au/WebR...ienna_4.00.jpg
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Old 09-29-2013, 03:34 PM
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Default Re: In search of bread baking tips

Quote:
Originally Posted by okn View Post
Well I double jays recipe found at post 17:

http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/11/m...h-17654-2.html (My first attempt at bread and making sourdough starter.)

And the results can be seen in the pictures. Here are some of the tips/pointers I am looking for:

1) Do I need to slash deeper? I'm using a razor, does anything else work much better?

2) What's the best way to transfer from where the dough is proofing to the peel? It seems as I am deflating the dough as it is somewhat sticky and doesn't transfer all that easy.

3) What's the best way to load the oven?? I know my oven is small, but throwing them in there seems challenging. I see others with all their loaves lined up perfectly and it makes me wonder how they are doing it. I always seem to be rushing trying to get the loaves in as fast as possible.

As you can see in the pictures, one of the loaves (picture 3) looks like it had a weird blowout, however, that was caused by it sticking a bit to the peel when I launched it.



Any advice or constructive criticism would be greatly appreciated!

Kevin
I think they look real nice but some of the x-spurts are sure to chime in on this. I always eat my mistakes. The neighbors get the nice looking ones.

If you are having trouble with sticking try proofing and cooking on parchment paper it is easy to load the peel and the paper tans a little but who cares. I also use a narrow peel for bread to two to a wide peel that way they nest better in a round oven. I steam just prior to first bread going in and then after last one.

Try to put first and second on each side so they can come out first, back and middle can come out last and be moved if needed part way through the bake. See my post on the door with a window. It is great for viewing the bread without removing the door and losing heat.
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Last edited by mrchipster; 09-29-2013 at 03:42 PM.
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Old 09-29-2013, 04:37 PM
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Join Date: Mar 2010
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Default Re: In search of bread baking tips

1) Do I need to slash deeper? I'm using a razor, does anything else work much better?

Razor will work just fine. You can buy a fancy lame. However, it is not likely to change the result. In my humble opinion, slashing bread is by far the most challenging part of baking bread. I still don't feel like I have mastered it and I have baked hundreds of loaves of bread. Here are some tips and tricks that I picked up on the way:

* home-made lame - go to Starbucks and get a wooden stir stick. Arch one end of it through the holes in the razor blade so that the blade edges run parallel to the wood stick. The stick will lower the risk of you cutting yourself with the blade. It will also give you better leverage for slashing the bread.
* under proofed bread - practice slashing on bread that is not completely proofed. If the final rise calls for 60 minutes, then think about practicing the slashes around 45 minutes. If your dough is too developed, it is extremely challenging to get a great slash.
*ears - if you are looking for slash to lift up and curl a little (i.e. the ear), you will want to slash the bread with the blade at a 45 degree angle to the bread surface. This will create the lip that will result in the desired effect.
* traditional slash - you can slash the bread however you want. In reality, the slash is just there to provide the bread with an ideal place to expand. The most common or traditional slash tends to run on a diagonal across the surface of the bread. To create that diagonal slash, you actually have to start with a slash that runs pretty much straight down the center of the top of the bread. Slightly overlap each slash. As the bread backs, those slashes will become diagonals.

2) What's the best way to transfer from where the dough is proofing to the peel? It seems as I am deflating the dough as it is somewhat sticky and doesn't transfer all that easy.

My first advice is to invest in a piece of food grade linen. You can buy a piece from most on-line baking supply companies. I bought a few yards of the material through the San Francisco Baking Institute. They have an on-line store will great prices. You will find that your loaves will not stick to gently floured linen.

Second, you can buy a very expensive piece of thin wood that will help you transfer the bread from the couche (piece of linen) to the peel. Cheaper option is to use a sturdy piece of cardboard. The other day, I saw a baker that was using a collapsed FedEx box to move the proofed dough from the couche to the peel. Doesn't hurt to dust the cardboard with a little bit of flour.

With respect to loading, I will let someone with more experience add their two cents there.

Don't get discouraged. Half the fun of baking bread is that it is so darn difficult. If I could replicate the perfect process each and every time, I would get bored and move onto another hobby.
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Old 09-29-2013, 10:23 PM
Peasant
 
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Location: Adelaide
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Default Re: In search of bread baking tips

In Australia many bakers slash bread with a serrated paring knife.

The knifes do get blunt after a while.

Angle the cuts along the loaf and get a small amount of overlap with the cuts.

Or some other ideas

Scoring Bread, Part 2 - YouTube
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Old 10-06-2013, 03:36 PM
okn okn is offline
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Default Re: In search of bread baking tips

I appreciate all the advice given so far. So, I was baking again today. See attached pictures. I made deeper cuts in the dough, and I think the results were better. I attached (hot glued) a razor blade to a Popsicle stick and that seems to help with the slashing. I also used a smaller peel made out of cardboard to transfer place the loaves in the oven. The smaller peel worked out better for me. I cooked three of the loaves on parchment paper. The three loaves had a different color to them, which I thought looked better. Has anybody else experienced this difference in color? I understand that the bottom would be different, but why the tops? You can easily see in the photos the three that were cooked on parchment. Would love to hear some comments on this phenomenon.

kevin
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Old 10-14-2013, 10:22 AM
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Default Re: In search of bread baking tips

The parchment-baked loaves look like they had better exposure to steam, maybe because they were partly shielded from the hot deck. How tightly does your door fit, and do you spray any water (for steam) before fitting the door?
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Old 10-14-2013, 10:37 AM
okn okn is offline
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Default Re: In search of bread baking tips

Steve, The door isn't air tight but it does make a decent seal. For steam, I used a small cast iron pan with rocks in it (which is preheated), then place a tin foil pan filled with ice on top of the rocks right after I put the bread in. The bread loaves baked on parchment were in various spots on the oven. One loaf was in a corner furthest the steam, one right next to the steam , and one near the middle. So I am at a loss for theories????
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Old 10-14-2013, 11:14 AM
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Default Re: In search of bread baking tips

okn, The parchment paper is acting as a shield from the radiant floor heat as the heat rises it is moving the steam away from the loaves. So the parchment is allowing the steam to hang out around the loaf and not be swept away so quickly.

One other thing you may want to proof your loaf's a bit longer..you have a bit much oven spring going on.

Well that's my two cents anyway.
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Old 10-14-2013, 12:06 PM
okn okn is offline
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Default Re: In search of bread baking tips

Faith, thanks for the 2 cents and parchment theory! I also have to thank you for the recipe. I've been using a combination of your's and Jay's and it seems to be performing quite well.

Kevin
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