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.
So i was mulling over baking techniques and adding a few things together. Namely:
- professional restaurant ovens are optimally sized to bake whatever they're baking. eg pizzeria ovens are just tall enough to clear a pizza. this reduces wasted energy, heating only a volume of air that is in contact with the baked good.
- heating a small space is cheaper and quicker than heating a large space.
- the Oven in an Oven method traps moisture from the dough and keeps it close to the crust.
All the "artisan baking" (I know the adjective is "artisinal," Mike!) books I have provide instructions for humidifying the oven to approximate the function of steam injectors in professional bread ovens. Some recommend using ice cubes. Some recommend hot water. Some recommend humidifying the oven before putting loaves in. Others humidify after loading the loaves.
I didn't the last time, and I think the loaf could have risen better. Does it matter much if I use hot or cold water in a cold oven? One of these days I'll rig some steam injection, but that's a ways down my project list.
I didn't want to hijack the other question where BROTKUNST suggested a turkey roaster cover so I thought I would start another thread.
I just made 3 french baguettes, and scored them on top. To give a more indepth insight this is what I did: