The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

transfering Tartine dough into hot pan

  • Pin It
bikeprof's picture

transfering Tartine dough into hot pan

I have gotten a lot more comfortable working with higher hydration doughs, mostly through making variations on Tartine basic country loaves.  One of my remaining challenges is transferring the dough into the hot Lodge pan without resorting to parchment, and I vacillate between just flipping the banneton over into the pan with one rather quick movement, or trying to provide some temporary support to the dough while turning it over.  Both methods have produced lots of ill-shaped loaves, but I would like to avoid resorting to parchment, as I'd rather not use the resources (even reusing pieces) and it seems like cheating...


emkay's picture

I heat only the top (deep) piece of the combo cooker and leave the bottom (shallow skillet) piece unheated. My Tartine basic country loaves seem to come out the same whether the bottom skillet is cold or hot.

P.S. I admit to cheating by using parchment. My bread sticks to the enamel of my Le Creuset combo cooker if I don't use parchment and I don't like cornmeal, semolina, excess flour, etc on the bottom of my loaf. 

Happy baking!


LindyD's picture

Check out how Ken Forkish does it:

It's the Baking Bread video, at 2:20

I've refined his technique to dusting a small peel with corn meal, then flipping the dough from the banneton to the peel.

The dough then easily slides from the peel to my preheated Lodge combo cooker.

Hope it works for you as well as it has for me.

bikeprof's picture

I can't imagine picking a really high hydration loaf with my hands to put it in the pan!

I've also used a peel much like you describe.

My question is not so much about a workaround as how to best go straight from banneton to pan, particularly with higher hydration loaves.  I think I'm too timid in thinking each loaf has to be completely babied, as I've watched a number of videos, like Forkish's and others, who almost slam the thing down.

Like most things, more practice would probably be the solution.

David Esq.'s picture
David Esq.

And I was inspired to try to pick up the dough and put it in the pan.  However, at least with my tartine basic country loaf, it was not really doable as the dough was too heavy and too slack to pick up without distorting its shape.

Even if you can "slam" the basket down to get the dough, you don't see Forkish doing that onto a hot dutch oven. There is a good reason for that...if the dough does not come out cleanly, you have a mess and little hope of recovering.

As for cheating, using the dutch oven is a cheat if by cheating you mean doing something the "professional" baker does not do.  I like the peel because it enables me to make sure the dough comes out of the basket and allows me to reach up into the basket to help the dough along if it is sticking a bit, without worrying about setting my hand on fire.

bikeprof's picture

Yes, the best thing about the peel or parchment is the ability to do some trouble-shooting.

Going straight into (particularly a hot) pan leaves little room for that.

I initially veered away from using a peel, because even when I could ensure a good release/sliding, on a well risen high hydration dough, going down into the pan (shallow half of the Lodge Cooker), it would often get a bit lopsided.  I'm much more confident transferring loaves from peel onto a stone.

hanseata's picture

Who wants to risk burns or deflated, misshapen loaves from dropping them from above? I cut a piece of parchment around the bread, like this, and have no problems.


bikeprof's picture

Of course it's not really cheating since there are no rules.

It is a matter of wanting to know and be skilled how to do it without, as a number of people apparently can do. 

I want to learn.

PetraR's picture

I agree with you, it is not at all cheating, it must makes life easier.

I do not even cut the Parchement Paper aroung the Bread, though it is a great Idea and i should do that tomorrow!!!

David Esq.'s picture
David Esq.

Works well.  

You can make the first load with only the deeper pan preheated so that you are placing the dough in a cold shallower pan.  But, loaf #2 will present the hot pan challenge. (If you are putting the dough in he deep pan, stop that). 

PetraR's picture

Why would you not use Parchement Paper? There is nothing wrong with using it.

I have great looking loafes of Bread that way.

I put a Semolina and AP Flour mix on the Parchement Paper first, carfefully put my Dough out of the Banneton on it, score the Dough and lift it in to the hot LeCreuset Dutch oven.

It makes life much easier.