The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Baking Tray

Midnight's picture

Baking Tray

Please be patient with me, I'm just a beginner, this one may be a very obvious question.

Should the oven cast iron baking tray be hot or cold before laying the bread over it? I'm asking because I don't want to use any synhtetic/aluminium mats or trays so I have to lay the bread directly over the iron tray(with some olive oil), but I can do that only if the tray is previously out of the oven since if I try to take that tray out hot and move the dough "à la last minute" I ruin the rising resulting in a cracker more than a nice high bread. How can I solve this problem? But here comes another question: is heating the extra virgin olive oil(between the tray and the dough) safe at very high temperatures?


Thanks in advance

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

Baking parchment is the answer to one of your problems and you won't need oil which causes smoking and breathing that in is not healthy for you.  Cut yourself a nice piece of cardboard bigger than your bread.  Put some parchment paper on it and then your loaf.   Carefully slide the parchment with loaf onto the hot iron and at the same time slide the cardboard out.   You will soon be able to place it with accuracy.

If your loaf is rising in a banneton, cover the dough with the parchment and then the cardboard and invert the whole thing.  Then transfer to the oven.  Parchment paper can be found in most supermarkets.  Comes in boxes like foil and plastic wrap.  Halfway thru the bake, slip the parchment out from under the baking bread and use it for another loaf.  You can get more mileage on it.

The other possible problem, is that your loaf falls too easily, this could mean overproofing.  The loaf has expanded too much and is in danger of deflating with a little movement.    Try putting it into the oven sooner to avoid overproofing.  When you indent your loaf lightly with your fingers, to test for readiness, does it put up some resistance?  It should.  If it doesn't it may be overproofed.  You want to bake it before it gets that far.

Questions?  Please ask.