The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Banneton for 2k miche?

Toad.de.b's picture
Toad.de.b

Banneton for 2k miche?

After trying for most of a year, I finally baked a loaf of bread last weekend worthy of a reprieve from the compost.  Bugger the raccoons, they'll have to fend for themselves this week.  I thought maybe I'd reward myself with a proper banneton and perhaps retire the salad spinner basket that has sufficed up to now.  Does anyone know who sells a banneton that can accommodate a 2kg miche?  It's not clear to me whether the SFBI or others I've seen are that big. 

Thanks.

tdb

OldWoodenSpoon's picture
OldWoodenSpoon

I have two of these 10" Round Baskets with non-removable linen liners from SFBI, and I am certain they will hold at least 2 kg, and I think they could probably go to 2.5 kg without trouble.  I've only had the courage to get to about 1750 grams so far, but one of these days...  Just make sure you get the big ones.  They are huge compared to my "normal" bannetons, and I think they are all of 6 inches deep at the enter lowest point. 

Good luck
OldWoodenSpoon

Toad.de.b's picture
Toad.de.b

Thanks OWS.  Those look nice and --  if you say so --big enough (my salad spinner basket is >10" and barely holds the 2k dough). "Huge compared to normal" sounds about right for a 2k miche.

Those are lined.  Any thoughts on linen versus naked willow?  Maybe I shouldn't be concerned, but doesn't that non-removable linen get grungy enough after a while that you wish you could remove/launder it? 

I've also read pitches online (SFBI? Brotform?) about how the naked willow absorbs moisture and thereby facilitates scoring and improves crust development.  I could use some help on the former -- my gooey hi-hyd doughs laugh at the blade.  And of course there are those professional looking concentric flour rings you get with naked willow on the finished product.  But I've got a lot more pressing issues to address in my baking before I can fuss over how the damn things look.

Thanks again,

tdb

OldWoodenSpoon's picture
OldWoodenSpoon

Linen liners have their pros and cons, and it really is personal choice for you as a baker.  There is a risk of the linen becoming sticky, but I find that if I allow time to air dry thoroughly, and then brush it well (but not so well as to fuzz up the linen) then they stay quite nice.  You also give up the pattern that the unlined baskets produce though.  Many like it, but there are those that prefer the "clean and uncluttered" look that a linen cloth liner produces.  For both the lined and the unlined it is necessary to flour them well to prevent sticking.  This also makes brushing easy and effective for cleanup. 

I've seen many an artisan bakery where the shelves are filled with lined baskets.  I only rarely have seen unlined baskets in one.  I find the lined basket, well floured, less likely to stick with my high-hydration doughs, and I suspect that is the reason commercial bakers (that I have visited) seem to prefer the lined baskets.  All that said, I like the pretty pattern the unlined willow baskets produce, and that is what I use most.  I only resort to liners when I retard shaped loaves overnight in the fridge.  I tried it once in one of my unlined ones and spent way too much time scraping the crud off it afterward. :(   No more of that for me!

This is one of those things where, in my opinion, you get to suit yourself as a baker.
Best of luck with whatever you choose.
OldWoodenSpoon

gerhard's picture
gerhard

Try using semolina flour for dusting the baskets, I have no trouble with overnight retarding in the fridge using semolina but regular flour the loaves stick.  I have also used corn meal successfully and starch seems work well for long proof times.  I really prefer the lined basket but have both.

Gerhard

OldWoodenSpoon's picture
OldWoodenSpoon

Thanks for the tip Gerhard.  One of these days I will get the nerve to test it.  I'm not so confident, with no disrespect to your own experience, that semolina will work any better than the 60/40 rice flour/white flour mix I usually use though.  Nothing ever sticks to rice flour, seriously!  But, given a high enough hydration, and enough hours in the fridge, and the wet seems to win.  Semolina is a little more coarse than rice flour though, so I'll have to try it and see.

I appreciate the tip
OldWoodenSpoon

Toad.de.b's picture
Toad.de.b

Thanks OWS for such a generous  meditation on bannetons, lined and willow.  Extremely useful information.   I decided to go with linen.  

Now  to make my efforts worthy of such classy apparati.

tdb

davidg618's picture
davidg618

I rencently baked a 1.75 kg loaf,  http://thefreshloaf.com/node/27754/big-loaf , proofed in a SFBI banneton. Fully proofed it was just even with the top of the basket. It would easily hold a 2 kg. loaf.

David G

Toad.de.b's picture
Toad.de.b

Thanks David.  So that was the same 10" round, non-removable linen-lined basket that OWS refers to above?

Cheers,

tdb

 

davidg618's picture
davidg618

Yes.

dmsnyder's picture
dmsnyder

Besides what has already been said, the linen-lined bannetons are generally less expensive.

I have both kinds. Both the linen and the reed ones need dusting with flour. I use a 50/50 AP/Rice flour mix. Both should be brushed out after drying. I use a stiff vegatable brush. At the SFBI, they use toilet bowl brushes (dedicated to this use). Both absorb moisture from the loaf surface.

It should be said that bannetons are most useful for high-hydration breads that tend to spread out if not given a lot of lateral support. For lower hydration loaves, proofing en couche - on a piece of "baker's linen" - that is folded in pleats to support the loaves is sufficient, and this is a much less expensive option. It is absolutely the best choice for baguettes and odd-shaped loaves. SFBI also sells baker's linen, and they have the best price by far that I've found.

David

 

Toad.de.b's picture
Toad.de.b

....offers way too much comic potential.  But I'll let it (bulk) ferment in the fertile imaginations of TFLoafers.

Thanks for your banneton/couche thoughts, David.  I suspect there are indeed proper linen couches in my future as well.  But have to wait for another personal baking milestone, significant baguette ambition, and for my current Variations on a Big Miche obsession to subside a bit.  Need more weekends!

tdb