The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Help! Bread making newbie, how to transport bread from rising into the oven...

Big Mule's picture
Big Mule

Help! Bread making newbie, how to transport bread from rising into the oven...

I am not sure which group to post this question, but I figured I would start here. I am following the simple lessons on this site, specifically, lesson 3, where we use a preferment. It seems simple enough.

Where I just discovered a huge difficulty is with what happens after the bread rises after forming it, and then getting it into the oven. What I did was let the bread rise on a cutting board, then form it, then let it rise again. Then I decided to transfer it from the cutting board to the bread (pizza) stone in the oven. Huge mistake! As soon as I tried to pick up the risen bread - poof! It collapsed. I guess I will be eating flat bread tonight. 

Should I let the bread rise on the bread stone? That means I am putting  a cold (room temperature) bread stone into the oven. Is that OK?

Thanks for the help!

pmccool's picture

You actually have two issues at play.  

The first is that the dough had been allowed to rise/proof/ferment too long.  That is why it collapsed when you picked it up.  In this sense, too long has no connection to clock time.  Rather, it means that the fermentation had expanded the dough so much that the bubbles containing the gases from the fermentation could stretch no further.  They were very fragile and probably already leaking gas.  The movement was enough to cause them to rupture and deflate.  Use the Search tool at the upper left to search for poke test.  That will get you a lot of entries with advice on how to gauge how much expansion is enough, or not enough, or too much.

The second is a means for transferring the dough.  You can buy purpose-built tools, called peels, for transferring the unbaked loaves into the preheated oven and for retrieving the baked loaves from the hot oven.  Or, you can duplicate that function using items that may already be on hand: a flat cookie sheet, a stiff piece of cardboard, a thin board, etc.

And, to make life easier, you may also want some form of support for your loaves as they ferment.  Using the Search tool again, look up couche, banneton, or brotform.  As with a peel, you can buy items or fashion your own from other items you have available.

Sorry to hear about your unintended flatbread.  Best of luck with your future endeavors.


MNBäcker's picture

Parchment paper is your friend. Proof your loaf on a sheet of parchment (baking paper) that is laying on a cookie sheet.

When it comes time to transfer it onto your hot stone in the oven, you can easily slide the parchment paper off the cookie sheet and onto the stone (you can even gently tug the paper if it's a little heavy - just don't burn your hands in your oven).

As you progress in your breadmaking journey, you will most likely become more familiar with a banneton or brotform, then you can "dump" your loaf gently onto your peel (which can be a cookie sheet, pizza peel or anything else solid) which you dusted with cornmeal.

Good luck,


wayne on FLUKE's picture
wayne on FLUKE

You can do final proof on parchment paper and then gently pick the whole thing up and place it on the HOT stone (or as some do, into a HOT dutch oven/combo cooker)

I bought a super peel and love it!


Wild-Yeast's picture

5 years ago I found wicker bread baskets at something under $2.00 and bought enough to last awhile. The baskets are lined with cotton dinner napkins that have been sprinkled with rice flour [to make the napkins "non-stick"]. The bread dough is placed into the baskets and the baskets are then placed into plastic bags for final proofing. A little rice flour is sprinkled on top of the dough to keep the plastic from sticking to the tops.

After proofing, the dough is refrigerated, retarding the dough.  After 12 hours the dough is taken out and allowed to come to room temperature. A sheet of parchment is placed onto a polyethylene cutting sheet that is then inverted over the bread basket containing the dough - the entire lot is "flipped over" so the basket and cotton liner can be removed from the dough leaving it on top of the parchment and polyethylene cutting sheet. The loaf is then slashed and placed onto the oven stone by holding the parchment at the far end while sliding the polyethylene sheet away allowing the dough and parchment to gently land on the cooking stone. A water spritzed cloache is then placed over ther dough and parchment for the steam portion of the bake. Be sure to place a cottom towel or two over the oven window to prevent chill shocking the glass from inadvertent water drips.


Big Mule's picture
Big Mule

Thanks for the suggestions everyone. I will be reading up on what tools to use, partchment paper, etc. I watched some videos online as well to see how to form and fold bread. Thank again.

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

example I got quite a few hits with:  How to transport bread to oven  

also explaining collapsing dough.  Amazing what's in the archives!

Oh!  Welcome to TFL!