The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

cast iron

mrosen814's picture

Cast Iron Cornbread With Caramelized Onion and Chèvre

May 20, 2012 - 5:15am -- mrosen814

I think this quick and easy cornbread is a fantastic recipe (thank you Smitten Kitchen), with an incredible amount of flavor. 

The savory caramelized onion bounce off the sweetness of the cornbread, and the addition of the goat's cheese adds that subtle twang.

I made this the other weekend to bring to my sister-in-law's home for Sunday night dinner -- huge hit. 

Pics and recipe here.

dablues's picture

Size Cast Iron Pan & Loaf

January 17, 2012 - 10:21am -- dablues

I have a 5 quart cast iron pot, and a 3 quart combo and haven't used either one for bread yet.  I usually do the long type loaves instead of the round ones.  I want to make a whole wheat and I use 8 oz whole wheat, 24 oz AP, and 26 ounces water. I also add salt & yeast.  I usually divide in half and make two loaves.  Which cast iron pot would I use for the bread. Should I do it as one loaf in the large pot or 2 loaves in the combo?  Hope someone can advise. 

Kav Daven's picture

Cast Iron vs. Baking Stone?

January 14, 2012 - 6:04am -- Kav Daven

I finally figured out how to make basic sandwich bread and now I'm moving on to greater challenges. 

I would like to get a baking stone but there seems to be a number of people who prefer cast iron. I am already a huge fan of cast iron. I have several cast iron pieces already and enjoy theire durability and versatility. I cook at home with them. I use them on my grill. I've used them at the park on huge out door grills for big events. I've even hiked cross country and used cast iron over the fire.

Breadboard's picture

Sourdough boule in cast iron

December 15, 2011 - 9:51pm -- Breadboard

Still hot this evening fresh from the ceramic oven so I'll wait until tomorrow morning to slice.  I'm baking in cast iron and I'm feeling very satisfied with results.   This is a basic sourdough made by my very own apple peel starter.   The bail on the Dutch oven sure comes in handy when moving the heavy pot in and out of my ceramic oven.   I'm testing out a few things---  The new apple starter,  the Dutch oven, a signature slash to the top of the bread and the quality of the bread.  Will do the taste test tomorrow morning!

Nickisafoodie's picture

Sourdough Rye with Seeds – cast iron bake

First, thanks to Eric Hanner for this post providing inspiration to explore covered cast iron cooking recently:  This is my second bake with cast iron and I like the results!  Flavor and texture were awesome!

I already owned a 5 qt Wagner Dutch oven with a glass lid that has been in the family as long as I can remember.  The diameter is the same as the 3 qt. Lodge combi cooker - the higher capacity of the Wagner being due to taller height.  So I had vessels that would allow two similar sized loaves to be baked at once- albeit with one having glass and one having cast iron cover.  Both loaves came out identical



Sourdough Rye Recipe for two loaves (2,066gr or 2.3 lbs prior to baking)

Overall Formula:

60% bread flour (697gr)

25% fresh ground whole wheat (293gr)

10% fresh ground whole rye (114gr)

5% Oat bran (I tend to add to all of my breads for health reasons - 58gr)

23 grams sea salt

20 gr molasses (approx 2 tbs)

10 gr malted wheat powder (approx 2 tbs) – sprouted, dried and ground into flour (malted barley would substitute)

40 gr mixed seeds: Flax, charnushka/black caraway, sesame, poppy seeds (approx 4 tbs)

72% hydration ratio: 834gr water including starter build up.


Build Stages:

1.      Stage 1 - build rye starter (100% hydration) to 228 grams (11% of recipe).  This uses all of the rye flour.

2.      Stage 2 – add 293gr of whole wheat, 58gr oat bran, 38 gr white bread flour, all of the seeds, 389gr water.  This approximates 39% of the total formula.  When combined with Stage 1 equates to 50% of the total recipe.  Let proof 8 hours at 78° (oven off light on gets works well).

3.      6pm: incorporate remaining ingredients other than salt.  40 minute autolyse.

4.      Add salt, mix 6 minutes on low speed.

5.      Stretch and fold 3 times at 45 minute intervals.  Keep at 78° between folds.

6.      10:00 pm: Preshape loaves, rest 25 minutes, shape into final loaf and place in floured banneton (actually: $1.50 colander from the dollar store lined with a microfiber dinner napkin and lightly dusted with flour- micro fiber wicks away moisture and releases fine with modest dusting)

7.      Place in plastic bag, leave overnight in refrigerator.

8.      Preheat oven 1 hour at 500° - include Dutch ovens and lids

9.      Plop dough into hot vessels, spray with water, score, and cover.  In they go.

10.  Reduce heat to 450° after 5 minutes

11.  Remove cover after 30 minutes

12.  Baked another 5 or so minutes until internal temp is 195°.  Shut oven until internal bread temp was 202°. 

Note: While the loaves came out nice, the crust is not rock hard as Eric was striving for and as was pointed out in his post/link above.   While my crusts were not rock hard after a 30 minute cover, I am still happy with the outcome.  

Perhaps next time I will leave the temp higher and in the oven longer to see what impact that has on the crust. And not spray dough after putting into Dutch ovens?  Or perhaps shut the oven sooner and leave until 210° or so internal?  Any suggestions on that elusive crust would be appreciated!

acb_rn's picture

Cast Iron Loaf Pan - USA made, only until 11/28!

November 15, 2010 - 4:44am -- acb_rn

Lodge Manufacturing makes the only cast iron loaf pan made in th USA that I know of.  Sante Fe and Old Mountain are made in China.  If that's okay with you, that's fine, this is not an argument for or against manufacturing in China.  I just wanted to post this for those of you who may have been searching for a cast iron loaf pan made in the USA.  Lodge sells theirs only once a year, and I wanted to share it with you that they are currently on sale, but only until November 28.

RichmondJim's picture

Inexpensive alternative for a Le Creuset dutch oven / $45 today only!

September 6, 2010 - 8:59am -- RichmondJim

For those of us looking for a less expensive alternative to the Le Creuset cast iron dutch oven, the folks at are offering the Cuisinart CI670-30PC 7 Qt. Enameled Cast Iron Casserole with Lid for $39.99 plus $5.00 shipping & handling. This offer is good TODAY ONLY (Sept. 6, 2010) and the dutch oven is only available in blue at the time of this post (the red sold out).

kgreene's picture

Cast Iron bread pans that stack, general recommendations?

December 4, 2009 - 1:13pm -- kgreene

I'm trying to decide on what cast iron bread pan to get and in addition to other recommendations, I'm specifically trying to find out if anyone has either of these and if they stack.  I have limited space in my kitchen so I would like to be able to store them as efficiently as possible.  I also think I'd prefer one that's larger but it's hard to tell whether the measurements are the internal or external ones.

If anyone has any comments or recommendations about specific brands of cast iron bread pans I'd like those also.  

SulaBlue's picture

One-Day Bread/Cast Iron suggestions?

March 23, 2009 - 6:12pm -- SulaBlue

I remember some time ago seeing a picture of bread that had been baked inside a round dutch oven. I'm a bit short on baking supplies (One loaf pan, one pizza stone) and, quite frankly, very new to baking bread. I have two seed cultures going - one rye, one spelt, but how healthy they will be remains to be seen. In the meantime, I am itching to make some bread!


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