The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Used Romertopc

Brienne's picture

Used Romertopc

I just picked one up at Humane Society thrift store with the intention of baking with it.  It has clearly been used.  It was only 10 bucks, but it later occurred to me that is porous and I have no idea what it was used for or how it was kept.  Should I be concerned about this purchase or just go ahead and bake away?

clazar123's picture

If you think it is OK to use, give it a good wash, thoroughly dry and then heat it up (starting in a cold oven) to get it up to a temp that will kill anything living and bake off anything else.

I understand your caution. My sister's chem lab used 9x13 cake pans to hold samples of all kinds of things but when they were "cleaned" they looked just like a cake pan. She advised they could NOT be used for food but there were no markings to indicate that when they were disposed of. She used them to start seedlings.

moschogianis's picture

The instructions that usually accompany these things when new caution the user to avoid soaps and detergents in the washing of them. Somehow they tend to clog the pores of the ceramic material and render it less effective. Hot water and scouring pad (nylon, copper, stainless) is what is recommended. 


Rpepper's picture

I bake bread in an old Romertopf that I bought at a garage sale and used for many years to roast chicken. The first time you use it for bread, heat it for about an hour at 450F or so. When I did this, it exuded a brown oil that I wiped off with paper towels. Wiping it off is crucial; otherwise it will smoke. Needless to say, I used a parchment paper liner between the Romertopf and the loaf that first time. After the second use, this oil stopped, but I still use parchment paper because it makes it easy to get the loaf into and out of the heated pan. I don't soak the Romertopf before using it. I heat it for about an hour, slip in the proofed loaf, and cover it. Try baking it for 20 minutes with the lid on and 25 minutes more uncovered. I found plastic burger baskets at a restaurant supply store that work well for proofing loaves for the Romertopf I have. Good luck!