The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

My Steaming Method

Song Of The Baker's picture
Song Of The Baker

My Steaming Method

I thought I would share this method with you all since I have had nothing but great, carefree results with my loaves since using.

It is nothing that most of you probably haven't seen before.  I use a typical mid size roaster such as this one.

Once in the roaster, to protect the loaf from the water that I add to the pan, I use aluminium foil as shown here:

It may not give the same spring as a baking stone, but with the results I have been getting, how can I complain?  No more misting, interrupting heat by opening up the door and spritzing, ice cubes, boiling water tray.

I use aluminium foil to line the bottom, with the edges flipped up to protect from the water poured in.  I just upend my proofed dough onto a sheet of parchment paper, slash, then lower the dough on paper into the roaster.  All I do then is pour about a 1/2 cup of boiling water in an empty space in the roaster (to be honest I dont know if this step is even necessary as some doughs emit enough moisture to develop their own steam), cover with lid and in the oven it goes.  Below are some results of this steaming method.

Please let me know if any of you try this out, along with the results!

Hope it helps.

 

christinegalat's picture
christinegalat

So happy to catch this! Thank you for posting your idea - I would have never put the two together.  Just wonderful.

MangoChutney's picture
MangoChutney

What beautiful loaves!

When I bake my pan loaf, I invert a second, identical, pan over the one containing the proofed dough.  Before doing so, I gently pour about 1/4 cup water directly over the dough.  I have baked with the inverted second pan, but without the water, when there was no room for any water.  I feel that the loaf gets better oven spring when I use the water, but since the dough is probably overproofed when there is no room for the water it may not be neccessary after all.  I shared this here because it struck me that your added water and mine were the same volume for the same purpose.

Song Of The Baker's picture
Song Of The Baker

Thanks Mango.  Good to hear that you had a similar system.  Now that I use this method, I shutter at the thought of how I attempted to inject steam before.

Janetcook's picture
Janetcook

Very nice outcomes with your steaming method. :-)

If you have a restaurant supply store within reach you will probably be able to find any size or shape of a pan you need.  The prices in my local one are usually very reasonable and I have found lots of neat things that I never would have found in a 'regular' store.

Take Care,

Janet

 

Song Of The Baker's picture
Song Of The Baker

Thanks Janet.  I have no doubt I will be able to find a good fitting pan for other shaped loaves.  I just need to find the time!  I appreciate the advice however.  Knowing me, I would have just gone to a 'regular' store instead of the more reliable specialty shops.

 

 

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

of the roaster and misting the loaf and  lid before closing?

Song Of The Baker's picture
Song Of The Baker

No I haven't.  There's an idea!  Actually, I have never used parchment paper, even though I love cooking and baking, I have just never used it.  Don't even know where at the grocery stores to find it.  Probably near the saran wraps, etc.  Would it be sturdy enough to stand up to the wide grooves on the bottom of the roaster?  That was the main reason I never put the dough directly onto the roaster.

rjerden's picture
rjerden

If this is going to be considered as a possible permanent methodology, buy one of those non-stick oven liners and trim it to fit the roaster. It will have more stability than parchment paper for the grooves and you can re-use it over and over. That's all I use anymore.

Song Of The Baker's picture
Song Of The Baker

I am so glad I posted this.  You guys keep giving better and better ideas.  I didn't even know those liners existed!  I will for sure try that.  Thanks!

fishers's picture
fishers

is the oven liner considered food grade?

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

I have had good luck using a hot stone with a inverted aluminum DO bottom.  Just slide the boule on parchment paper onto the stone with some kind of peel and invert the DO.   Aluminum works best as it heats up very fast to match the stone temp lickity split.   Everything you touch is cold - very nice.

SeligmansDog's picture
SeligmansDog

Fantastic results!!  Do you remove the baking lid during the bake at all?

Hope someone is still reading, I did an extreme steaming and it flopped regarding a good crust, so there seems to be an optimal level of humidity,  more isn't always better, here's my experiment

http://webercam.com/2013/08/crackling-crust-experiment-failed.html