The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Finally A Solution to Lack of Solid Surface Counter Top

BreadBabies's picture

Finally A Solution to Lack of Solid Surface Counter Top

I recently posted looking for ideas on solving my problem of not having a solid surface counter top. This is not normally an issue except when working with high hydration doughs. Then, it's such a big issue that I find it very difficult to make a decent loaf.

What didn't work:

A pastry mat: I have a pastry mat but it can get damaged by the corners of the bench knife and since it's not on a solid surface to begin with, it tends to slide around. Also, they're difficult to clean.

Plastic cutting board: Big disaster. They are a bit porous (especially after being used and getting some knife cuts)  and not large enough to accommodate my dough.

Butcher block: If you've got $100+ to throw at a butcher block large enough to accommodate dough, then you probably have a solid surface counter top to begin with. Since I'm short and they are high, they also make the work space a little too tall for me.

What did work:

I went to my local granite store (like a indie shop that specializes in counter tops, not a big box store). I purchased a leftover cut piece 20 x 26" for $20. That's less than I paid for the pastry mat on Amazon. Now all is right with the world. Exhale.....


Macette's picture

Now that was smart....well done. It's great finding a solution to problem at a bargain price, I am always trying to do that, nothing gives you greater pleasure, where there is a will there's a way.

alfanso's picture

If you don't have a good solid baking deck, you may also consider getting another granite remnant.  I just replaced mine with a granite remnant cut to size.  Also a mere $20 USD.  It makes for fantastic heat retention.

Depending on how high a hydration dough you want to work with, 80% and up for example, a post this past year by SteveB demonstrates what can be done with a drywall blade to shape and mold your dough.  He has a link to a video of an SFBI instructor demonstrating it.  And it keep your hands off the dough as well.  I've done it and as odd as it may seem, it works like a charm.