The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Preventing baguette "explosions"

neoncoyote's picture

Preventing baguette "explosions"

Good morning -

I've been on a sourdough baking streak for a few years now and am being tasked by a kink I still need to work out: baguette explosions (evident on the topmost baguette, and a bit on the lowermost one in the photo below). I'm hoping the more experienced bakers in this forum might steer me in the right direction here. A few observations:

- Though I'm now using perforated pans because of the wonderful bottom crust they impart, I recall not having this "explosion" issue when I baked my baguettes on parchment paper on a stone.

- As you can see by the resulting "hats" on the boules, my oven does not produce even heat.

Thinking about the factors most likely to contribute to the explosion problem, I tend to think it's shaping or scoring...but then there's the resolution of the problem when I use parchment/ is it really shaping and scoring? I've considered going back to the stone, but given I like to produce a variety of shapes in one bake, the perforated pans -- and the baguette pans, which prevent the baguettes from "spreading out" laterally -- give me more surface area in which to do that. And about the scoring -- could I be scoring too deeply?...too shallowly? 

Any ideas most welcome! 



MANNA's picture

Its all in the scoring. Watch this video from KAF.


golgi70's picture

Many factors may be a part in this but the first I'd work on is scoring.  You are scoring across the loaf.  You want to score in with the length of the baguette and not across.  almost straight lines with each cut starting at the last third of the previous so they open together.  Videos like the above, and many others can show this more visually.  Based on the burst of the boules (which I think are beautiful) they might be a touch underproofed.  Maybe the baguettes are as well?  I use baguette pans at work and would much rather be baking directly on a stone.  The heat transfer is immediate and makes for better oven spring and therefor bloom and grigne.    


Happy Baking