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Old 11-13-2007, 09:54 AM
Frances's Avatar
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Default Does the oven have to get to pizza heat for baking bread?

...or could you start with a middle sized fire, get the oven up to the heat needed to bake bread, and keep the fire going at that size until the bricks are heated up all the way through? I supose wood-wise it might work out the same, i.e. a longer heat up time with a smaller fire.

And why do you have to rake out the coals before baking bread? I didn't today, because I haven't got a copper wire brush yet, (or a coal shovel for that matter)... so what would have been different without coals?

This bread-baking novice would be glad of clarification
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Old 11-13-2007, 12:37 PM
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Default Re: Does the oven have to get to pizza heat for baking bread?

You need to get the oven hot enough, long enough, so the masonry is not wicking heat our during your baking. This causes the temps to decrease pretty rapidly.

See the discussion on this thread:
http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f11/...bake-1208.html (Dissapointing Bake)

As to why you have to rake out coals, I am not sure you have to, but it makes your bread cleaner to sweep the hearth clean...

Drake

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Old 11-13-2007, 02:33 PM
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Default Re: Does the oven have to get to pizza heat for baking bread?

Thanks Drake. Actually after posting this question I started reading the e-book on WFO cooking, and...

Seem to be two kinds of people in the world, the ones who read the instructions BEFORE trying something new, and then people like me
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Old 11-17-2007, 10:29 PM
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Default Re: Does the oven have to get to pizza heat for baking bread?

Frances
Definitely try to get your dome to burn clean and then spread the coals out across the floor. After about 30 minutes remove the coals and allow the oven temperature to stabilize...sometimes the longer the better if you have a good door and insulation...both of which you probably have. You may even damp mop the floor but it is not necessary. As for the coals question you generally will remove them because it will allow for a better baking atmoshpere inside the oven...meaning you will have the steam available to allow for nice oven spring...if there are hot coals they will make the oven bake drier.
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Dutch
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Old 11-17-2007, 11:39 PM
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Default Re: Does the oven have to get to pizza heat for baking bread?

Quote:
Originally Posted by DrakeRemoray View Post
As to why you have to rake out coals, I am not sure you have to, but it makes your bread cleaner to sweep the hearth clean...

Drake
Raking out the coals and letting the oven settle for a while will give you a more even heat. I get lazy and leave the coals in the oven, and one side ends up hotter than the other, and you have to turn your loaves, or you get one side that is too brown. If you spread the coals around the edge of your oven, the floor it too hot relative to the dome.

Of course you can just leave the coals in, and still make it work.
James
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Old 11-19-2007, 12:50 AM
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Default Re: Does the oven have to get to pizza heat for baking bread?

Thank you, that is very usefull!

I'm still getting used to the fact that its all more flexible cooking in a WFO.

One problem I have been having is that the bread bakes too fast from above, probably because I didn't leave the coals in for long enough (yep, I removed then last time round)... but if it still doesn't work I can try putting them round the edge.
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Old 11-19-2007, 06:24 PM
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Default Re: Does the oven have to get to pizza heat for baking bread?

I suppose you could use them smoke blanket style to avoid the problems James referred to but Drake makes the most sense - most breads (all yeast breads I can think of) prefer a humid or outright moist environment. A dry oven isn't going to bake them as nicely.
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