The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts


SourFlour's picture


I recently tried a diamond pattern for my miche, and got a very interesting result:

 on Twitpic

I love the ear, although it is quite a bit larger than I've seen, and none of the other slashes really opened up properly.  Has anyone seen this happen before?  My gues is that I slashed a bit deeper on that side, although I don't recall doing so. I'd like to be able to recreate similar effects, but obviously a bit more controlled.

This dough was 68% hydration, fermented for about 14 hours, and proofed for 3.

Danny - Sour Flour

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

Cutting it open might give you your answer.   That is not an "ear"  it's a bulge!

Could be from uneven tightening of the dough while shaping.  The patterns in the crumb may prove interesting...  also heat distribution may be a factor.

If low slashing is the cause, then try slashing higher up on the loaf, closer to the middle top and away from the outside edge.  Keep in mind the dough tends to rise and expand into the slashes.  The more rigid unslashed surface becomes a sort of exoskeleton for the loaf holding back expansion.  Slash where you want the dough to expand.  The beauty and fun in slashing is the result of these two forces in the first 10 - 15 minutes of the bake as the loaf expands. 


dmsnyder's picture

Hi, Danny.

If you get an asymmetric bloom like that, there must be asymmetric pressure from within or asymmetric resistance from the "skin" of the boule. My hunch is that there was an existing weak spot in the boule that you happened to cut through in scoring, thus compounding the weakness there.

This effect is not uncommon. Yours is just an extreme instance.


foolishpoolish's picture

I've had repeated difficulty with exactly the same problem. Since, it was only ever the score line facing and parallel to the back of the oven that exploded,  I ended up having to accept it was likely an oven problem.