The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Freezing Loaves

  • Pin It
Song Of The Baker's picture
Song Of The Baker

Freezing Loaves

I grew up in a home that practiced buying loaves of bread in bulk amounts and fill up the garage freezer for storage.  We would have month's worth of bread, and to tell you the truth, I was too young to understand or pay attention if the quality of the bread was affected at all.

Well, now that I bake every second weekend, I would like to place an extra loaf in the freezer for the following week.  Recently, I read that a good method is to place a freshly baked, but cooled loaf into the freezer, and when ready to use, thaw, mist with a bit of water and place in a 400 degree oven for 6-8 mins just to wake up the crust.

Does anyone have any experience with this method, or any better suggestions?

John

kph1956's picture
kph1956

Can't comment on your method but have come accross books and articles that suggest part-baking a loaf/baguettes (about 3/4 done) then cooling and freezing. When you want to use take from freezer and place in pre-heated oven bake to done. Can't give exact timings as this will depend on what type of bread and size, others may be able to give more details.

I do freeze fully baked loaves/buns/rolls etc and take out as required, defrost and use. They do tend to stale quicker, consequence of freezing I think.  When I was working I used to pre-slice a sandwich loaf (not having a slicing machine found an electric knife was easiest) before freezing then take out the number of slices required for the days sandwiches, make the sandwiches and then by lunchtime it was defrosted and ready to eat. Did the same with rolls/buns but usually had to let them defrost a short while to be able to slice in two.

Kevin

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

package them in 2 day use packs for our family size and freeze them immediately.   Boules and batards I quarter wrap them in plastic and place them in the freezer as soon as they are cool.   All are also placed in reusable plastic bags too.  No matter what our bread is always as fresh as it ever was plus a day if it lasts that long.

Song Of The Baker's picture
Song Of The Baker

Thanks folks.  I just tried out the method of thawing the boule, placed in oven at 400 degrees for 8 minutes, and the crust was nice and crispy and crumb soft as the day it was baked.  I will comment on the staling time, if it lasts long enough!

Doc.Dough's picture
Doc.Dough

It doesn't have the rhythm of the old jet engine description (suck, squeeze, burn, and blow) but you get the idea.  If you will bake and allow to cool (to stabilize the crumb and reduce the tendency of frozen slices to stick together) then slice and freeze, you will have individual slices that you can take out and microwave back to life. I generally make ciabattini (individual 100g ciabatta rolls) to maximize the amount of crust I can yield from any batch of dough then freeze and reheat them in the microwave for 25 sec, followed by a full 60 sec of waiting, followed by 10 to 15 sec of full power.  It is not the same as fresh out of the oven, but it avoids heating the oven. A few minutes in a convection oven does a nice job as well.

Janetcook's picture
Janetcook

I am a slice and freeze convert too when I freeze bread.  

One nifty trick I learned saved the slices from breaking when pulling a slice from the rest of the loaf...Simply put a small piece of waxed paper between each slice of bread and they come apart very easily.  No more broken bits of bread that nobody will eat.

Janet