The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Slashing the top of the loaf, timing?

kaleidosoph's picture

Slashing the top of the loaf, timing?

Hi all,

I make my bread from the basic bread recipe in the River Cottage Bread Book.  You slash the tops before putting it in the oven, & sometimes I can't quite get it smooth/fast enough and it can slightly deflate the bread.  It is possible to slash the tops say after 10 mins in the oven when the dough is warmer & bouncier, & more likely to keep it's shape?  I guess you could slash the tops at any time when the bread is still rising, as it's pointless once the yeast is dead.  Does the bread continue to rise for about 10 mins?


Sean McFarlane's picture
Sean McFarlane

Sounds to me like your bread is over-proofed if your scoring is deflating it.  Even if you dont get a perfect cut, it should not get deflated. Try adjusting your proof times.

Oh, and after 10 min in the oven the crust will, most like, be set already. 

BurntMyFingers's picture

Slash your bread at 10 minutes, and you'll end up with a loaf showing those same slashes, unexpanded. It's natural for the loaf to "deflate" a bit when it's slashed before loading in the oven, but it should pop right back within the first couple of minutes under heat... unless it's overproofed, as yours seems to be.


Janetcook's picture

I agree with over proofing.  

A trick I sometimes use on more sensitive doughs is that of refrigerating the loaves for about 15-20 when the loaf is almost completely proofed.  It finishes rising and the coolness makes it easier to score.  I generally get a really nice oven spring with this method.

Good Luck,