How long should dough be steamed in the oven? In his book, BREAD, Jeffrey Hammelman states, "From 4-6 seconds of steam is ample." (p. 100) in 460 degree oven. In stark contrast, in BREAD BAKING, Daniel DiMuzio states, "The quality of the crust in hearth loaves in enhanced by exposing the loaves to steam for the first 5 - 10 minutes of baking." (p. 130)
That's a huge difference. Any reasons for this disparity?
I'm pretty new to both sourdough baking and TFL, but I was asked for my recipe, so here we go...
A while back I had a discussion with David about when he used steam and when he used a cloche (or something like that), and I think his reply was some like "I'm still working that out". I've been trying to work that out over the last 3 or 4 months now too, so I thought it might be a nice time to share my thoughts and get the opinions of other TFLers.
When is it better to use steam and when is it better to use a cloche (I'm using cloche here as a generic term for an inverted roaster, tin foil pan, Le Cloche, etc.)?
Thinking about baking with a cover and steam injection, but I don't have that equipment. I put my baking stone on the top shelf of the oven, slightly over 3" down from the top element of the oven. My pan o' rocks for steam was on a middle rack. I misted the baguettes before they went in the oven and then baked with steam at 515 for 10 minutes and another 12 after removing the rock pan. Far and away the crispiest crust I've gotten yet.
Two simple questions regarding my new FibraMent baking stone:
Does one place a La Cloche or other bread pan on top of this baking stone?
Will steam crack a FibraMent stone?
I'm doing some computer work for a local engineering firm that specializes in heating ad AC systems. They design and sell a lot of steam boilers and are very familiar with the industry and the sub specialty of bakery's. I noticed a client name that I recognized as a old name in the community that is a well known bakery and asked what they were doing. I was surprised to find they were working on the steam system for a large commercial tunnel oven.