The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Can't Get Bottom to Brown

walker8476's picture

Can't Get Bottom to Brown

Having trouble getting the bottom of bread to bown.   This is what it looks like:



I pre-heat my baking stone for one hour at 250c, the turn down the oven to 220c for the remainder of the baking time.





mrfrost's picture

You must have a relatively thick stone. Also, your stone may be made of such a material that it takes longer to absorb heat than some other materials.

Where is the stone positioned in the oven? To help increase the stone's rate of preheating, you might try positioning it closer(as close as possible/practical?) to the heat source. Maybe also increase the oven's preheat temperature.

What kind of stone do you have(material, thickness)? Is it improvised, or was it marketed as a baking stone?

You will probably just need to experiment with the parameters(time, temperature, position, etc) to find what works for your situation. How long have you been baking yeast breads/pizzas?

walker8476's picture

The stone is about 1cm thick.

The stone is right on the bottom

It's a proper stone.  Not improvised.

Been baking for about two years.

GSnyde's picture

My oven's bake element is weak, but the broiler is strong.  I found that running the broiler for a while to heat the stone took care of my blond bottom problem.


Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

with the bread inside... maybe 15 minutes or so?  ...and cover the loaf so it doesn't brown too quickly. 

dabrownman's picture

bread over half way through the bake once the crust has set.  I do this if the top is browning to fast in the mini oven where the top of the loaf is very near the elements.

walker8476's picture

I tried cranking the oven to maximum for one hour before baking and left it at this temperature for the whole baking time.

Same result. 

I find it quite amazing that the bottom doesn't brown considering how searing hot the stone gets.

vtsteve's picture

Could we have a picture of your oven, as if it's ready to recieve a loaf? I'm having trouble visualizing your setup. You may have a bad heating element - does the stone *feel* searing hot? Are you preheating for an hour *after* the oven reaches 25o degrees, or does that include the warm-up time? The stone should soak at the target temperature for a good hour, until it reaches 250 degrees. You can get a cheap IR thermometer gun for $25-40 that will give you an instant reading on the surface temperature.

Emelye's picture

I noticed the same problem in the last bake I did.  I suspect the infrared radiation is higher coming from the top element than the bottom, because the bottom is blocked by some rather thick fireplace bricks.  (I preheated for at least 45 minutes @ 500ºF.)  I have a broken up pizza stone that I can use so I might try placing it, the pieces assembled like a child's jigsaw puzzle, on a rack above the bread to see if that evens things out.  I can't go much lower in the oven and still have room for my steam pan.