The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

baking temperatures for Reinhart's Artisan Breads

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margaretsmall's picture
margaretsmall

baking temperatures for Reinhart's Artisan Breads

As I've posted elsewhere, I'm working my way through Peter Reinehart's Artisan Breads everyday. I'm puzzled by the fact that some of the recipes give a baking temperature  of 350oF 0r 177oC. eg. most, but not all of the breads in the 'Enriched Breads' section. I can't see an explanation for this lower temperature, nor a common denominator. I baked a struan yesterday, and decided to compromise on heating the oven to its full capacity, 250oC, then turning it down to 200oC for 20 minutes, then down to 175oC for another 15 minutes. While the bread tastes good , the crust was soft, and certainly tapping on the bottom did not give the hollow sound which is supposed to indicate the bread is cooked.  I didn't think I had as much oven spring as I should have, although this might be related to the 'steam in the oven' issue which I raised in another thread.  I thought it might be that the additional ingredients (oil, honey) would lead to an overly browned crust, and admittedly after 20 minutes I put a piece of baking paper over the top to prevent it from browning too much, but the result was not nearly as well browned as other breads I've baked at higher temperatures.  I'd much prefer a crisper crust. I'd be interested to hear from anyone who has made these breads, and the temperature you used.

Margaret

eddieh70301's picture
eddieh70301

I don't have his Artisan book but I do have Bread Bakers Apprentice. I've made a couple of his recipes and they turned out good. I want to say he normally bakes at 450-500* for most of his recipes but I'm not certain as I do not have the book in front of me.

I'm currently making my way through Ken Forkish's Flour Water Salt Yeast and there are several recipes between FWSY and Reinhart's book that are similar. Reinhart uses a lower hydration and I don't find you get the airy crumb as you do in Forkish's book.

I actually prefer Forkish's recipes vs Reinhart's but that's just my opinion.

Try using a dutch oven to bake your bread. That's how Forkish does his and they come out brown and crisp. When the bottom is tapped, it does sound hollow.

pjkobulnicky's picture
pjkobulnicky

As a fiddler with recipes my wife says to me. "ALWAYS follow the recipe exactly the first time through. "

margaretsmall's picture
margaretsmall

Good advice. I suppose you ALWAYS follow it?? 

I'll try to get hold of the Forkish book, I notice other posters have recommended it highly. Don't know that I could cope with higher hydration though, I find it a struggle with Reinhart's recipes and have to restrain myself from adding more flour.

Thank you both.

eddieh70301's picture
eddieh70301

Once you do the stretch and folds, the dough comes together nicely. I thought I would have trouble with the higher hydration dough's but it was not too bad. It takes a little getting used to and I find that I have to do an extra 2 or so folds compared to what the recipe calls for.

All of Forkish's recipes are based on 1000 g of flour so it's pretty easy to reduce. I've always cut his recipes in half as a whole recipe would be too much.

PeterS's picture
PeterS

Enriched breads (those containing fat, eggs, sugar, oil or combination thereof) are baked at a lower temperature than lean (flour, water, salt, yeast) breads because they brown faster. The temperature needs to be high enough to create internal steam for good spring and rising, but not so high as to prematurely brown the crust before the crumb is done.  Too low a baking temp leads to excessively  longer bake times and dry breads. 50-100 DegF lower is typical, i.e. 450 down to 350 or less. Fats and oils (butter, shortening, even in yolks) will soften a crust. If you want a crunchy crust, you have to go lean.