The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Wicker bowl as banneton?

pseudobaker's picture
pseudobaker

Wicker bowl as banneton?

Bannetons are not easy to come by where I live - I have found none available locally.  My resourceful husband found a lovely wicker bowl which *looks* like it could double as a banneton, the only difference being that the bowl is shellacked.  Would this be a problem?  Or should I stick to the unshellacked bannetons, only available by mail order?

 

Thanks.

KipperCat's picture
KipperCat

I'm not sure about the shellac. You may find the finish being ruined by the bread dough, and I've no idea if the dough will absorb something from the shellac.

You could try lining it with a linen or cotton woven kitchen towel. I would rub flour into the towel, then sprinkle on plenty of wheat bran or corn meal. You won't get the pattern of the bowl, but will benefit from the shape. I've tried rising mine in a colander. Here's a link to one bread I did this way.

http://thefreshloaf.com/node/3393/my-best-nyt-no-knead-bread-date

Floydm's picture
Floydm

Yeah, lining it with a floured tea towel would be my suggestion too. It is unlikely the varish would cause any trouble or make anyone ill, but who knows...

colinwhipple's picture
colinwhipple

I proofed a loaf made from Floyd's Pain Sur Poolish recipe yesterday in an ordinary wicker basket lined wth parchment paper.  When the time came, I transferred the loaf on the parchment paper directly onto the baking stone, after trimming the edges of the paper.  It seemed to work fine.

Colin 

BROTKUNST's picture
BROTKUNST

I just ordered some bannetons from fantes.com .... pricing seemed reasonable if you also want a rectangular Brotform. Otherwise sfbi.com has the best pricing -in a limited selection- of the bannetons.

You put so much work and thought into your bread - In my opinion that deserves to be finished off with a quality proofing basket. They last for generations ....

BROTKUNST

pseudobaker's picture
pseudobaker

Thanks for all your comments.  I would line the bowl, but that negates the purpose of having a wicker bowl in the first place (i.e. the beautiful lines the willow leaves behind).  I currently use plastic-lined metal bowls for proofing my boules.  My main concern about the shellac was its "food safe-ness" - I just found out that the bowl was made in Bangledesh, so the shellac could be iffy.

 

Thanks, Brotkunst for the link - I've been eyeing the bannetons at the San Francisco Baking Institute, but this link had shapes I'd never seen...

 

The bowl is beautiful in itself - I think I'll use it as a bowl and go ahead and order some bannetons online.

 

BROTKUNST's picture
BROTKUNST

Ineed ... the triangle and double-round are interesting - but then again, for cutting slices of bread not very practical, I am afraid. I own some round, oval and rectangular bannetons. The oval ones are at times my favourites ... the loaves produce a beautiful ovenspring when you slash them like " ( | ) " along the wicker lines on top.

 

BROTKUNST