The Fresh Loaf

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Making breads on the stovetop technique questions

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I'mTheMami's picture
I'mTheMami

Making breads on the stovetop technique questions

Hi there bakers,

Yesterday I was super excited to roll out a batch of sourdough english muffins - actually the first thing made from my new-to-me starter. The taste turned out well, nice big bubbles in the crumb (is that the right wording?) ...

 

However!

Like everytime I have attempted a grilled bread (other attempt was pita, a couple times) the bread burned before it was fully cooked. So I am clearly using the wrong thpe of oil or wrong type of pan. For the pitas I did use high heat , but for the english muffins I used a medium, then tried medium low heat. 

I realize olive oil doesnt have a very high burn point, is that my problem? I only have olive oil (and seasame) at the moment, but of course for bread I can go buy something else. 

 

The first pan I tried to use was my well seasoned deBuyer pan. It burnt quickly, so I switched to a hard anodized steel griddle pan (with grill lines and everything LOL) since those are my only two pans out (the rest are in storage still from our international move here to Mexico). I also have a cast iron ditch oven (but with high sides didnt think it would be easy to flip things in ).

 

My ideal pan for this I am thinking would be my cast iron double sided griddle (the one with a flat side and a grilling side) . Is that correct? Or what do most people use? I am disappointed my deBuyer pan failed, I just made over easy eggs in it the other day and they slide around in that pan like a slip and slide! Sad. 

That one anodized griddle pan is the only "non stick" pan I have, the rst are stainless steel or cast iron (although many of my cast iron behave like non stick, so perhaps they count as well).

 

Thanks so much on any info on changing the oil (or butter, lard, something?) and pan if need be.

 

 

proth5's picture
proth5

I would think your cast iron griddle would be ideal fro English muffins.  I have used a well seasoned electric griddle (heavy cast aluminum) with nothing but a light sprinkling of semolina (no oil) between griddle and dough with no sticking whatsoever. Well seasoned cast iron should be even better.

I've done best with very controlled (med - low) heat.

If I feel the need to oil my griddle, I use a generic "vegetable" or peanut oil.  I pour a bit of oil on the griddle, then smursh (that's a technical term...) it around with a folded paper towel and, indeed, wipe most of it off. 

From what I know of the deBuyer pans, they seem to be a better piece of equipment for things that cook at a higher temperature (eggs - crepes - tortillas) than one would use for English muffins. 

Good luck and as always I remind posters that the good folks on TFL love to see pictures of your finished work!

I'mTheMami's picture
I'mTheMami

Thank you so much for the response!

 

Will dig the CI griddle out of storage ASAP and give it a try. How you describe your seasoning process ishow I do mine as well, with the smushing and all :) yesterday I did buy some vegetable oil and shortening to have on hand. I also used to use lard to season them.

 

if I dont have semolina flour, what would be a good susbitute?

 

will takepics of the next batch for sure! :) 

proth5's picture
proth5

but often finely ground cornmeal, polenta, or corn masa have been mentioned as substitutes for semolina in this application.

I'mTheMami's picture
I'mTheMami

Corn masa we have plenty of around here ;) good to know! Thank you. 

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

needed for the EM's.  Just makes them burn.  I use a seasoned cast iron skillet on medium heat or a non stick electric skillet set to 350.F.

 

I'mTheMami's picture
I'mTheMami

Thánk you! That explains a lot of my problem... Will try again ASAP and forgo the oil. 

mrfrost's picture
mrfrost

Almost any "gritty" cereal or milled grain works fine, in a pinch, or even for regular use, if you so desire

Cream of wheat, malto meal, ...

I'm a malt freak, so I like to load my muffins with whatever type of malt I can find, and when I didn't have any semolina, the malto meal that had been in the cabinet for ages completed the frying task perfectly.

I use a large skillet that has a fitted cover for frying my muffins. Using the cover for the first side and some of the second ensures the muffins are always cooked through. This also cooks the muffins faster and the burner does not need to be turned up very high at all. Takes about 6 min per side at about med-low on my electric stovetop.

I find that, for me, when cooking flatbreads, like tortillas, on the stovetop, after the pan has been brought up to a decent temperature, the pan doesn't need to be as screaming hot as seemingly directed by some recipes.

Good luck.

I'mTheMami's picture
I'mTheMami

Thank you for the detailed input! I will keep that in mind, and also perhaps give the electric skillet with lid that I *think* I did bring along. I did find I was standing at the stove forever (with two young ones , anything longer than 3 mins is enough time for them to get in trouble!) , perhaps using th lid would speed things along. :)