The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Oven for Artisan Breads

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synkronize's picture

Oven for Artisan Breads

Hi everyone!

I'm new to artisan bread baking and have made 2 breads successfully so far. However, I'm actually using a counter-top oven (Mistral) brand. Unfortunately i live in a small apartment in sunny Singapore and I don't have a space to fit a built in oven :(

Whilst the counter-top oven works well, it only goes up to a max of 240 degrees celcius and i think the temperature is rather erratic. So i can't quite achieve the kind of even browning that other ovens do unless i flip the bread and bake them on their sides.

I've read a bit about commercial ovens for homes (e.g. UNOX brand) which are also counter-tops and not necessarily big but haven't tried any of them yet. 

If anyone is in similar situation like me, please do share what ovens you use for making artisan breads. Would love to hear some suggestions.

Thanks in advance!

richkaimd's picture

If a Dutch oven fits in, and you can get one somewhere, you're probably good to go.  Maybe you have tried it already?  Your temperature seems hot enough.  The Dutch oven will help with the problem of heat fluctuation and you won't need to turn your bread over.  If you don't know the technique, you'll probably find it easily by searching around on Youtube, for example, to see how Jim Lahey makes his No-Knead Bread.  The same technique translates to any slack dough bread.  (I modify Lahey's technique of dough transfer in this way:  I prepare my final dough rise in a parchment paper-lined bowl then use the parchment paper as a sling, placing the dough in the sling into the dutch oven for the baking.  The paper gets a little browned but can easily be removed after the well-browned loaf is removed by tipping the dutch oven allowing the loaf to fall out.)  Of course this technique limits you to loaves shaped like the Dutch oven you use, but, hey, that's not so bad.  I recommend that you use a thermometer to check the internal crumb temperature as being about 91 C. or a little above.