The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

crispiest crust yet

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Pablo's picture
Pablo

crispiest crust yet

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.


I think that the steam congregates at the top of the oven (heat rises and all that) so maybe it's emulating the bake-under-a-cover-with-steam-injection technique.  My oven is electric but doesn't use the top element to maintain heat, only to achieve the initial setting, then it's just the lower element so there was no broiling of the tops.


Anyway, my bread has always been nice and crisp right out of the oven, but within an hour or so that crispness disappeared.  This time it's still crispy the next morning.  Very different.


:-Paul

Maverick's picture
Maverick

Several authors indicate that baking as high in the oven as possible is best for most artisan bread. I believe Maggie Glezer goes into detail about this in her artisan book. Glad to hear you got great results.

Pablo's picture
Pablo

I've only done two loads this way so far, but I forgot to mist the second batch and it was not as crisp... too little evidence to really state a case.


:-Paul

pattycakes's picture
pattycakes

Paul,


I also noticed that my bread was crisp when it came out of the oven and then softened. I then began copying David Snyder's practice of turning off the oven and cracking the door and letting the bread finish baking for 10 minutes. I find that my bread stays crisp now...


However, I just got a Fibrament stone, which seems to be really terrific, but the bottom of my bread is much thicker and darker than with the thinner pizza stone I had been using. I know this has been dealt with before on this site. Does anyone know a remedy?


Thanks,


Patricia