The Fresh Loaf

A Community of Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts.

Uneven oven heat?

neoncoyote's picture

Uneven oven heat?

Happy first day of spring!

This loaf is the European Peasant bread recipe from Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day. I've made this a number of times and am very pleased with how it's turning out. I made a point of angling my lame when I scored this loaf in an attempt to achieve ears, which I did on one side of the loaf, as you can see. Given I was very careful to maintain the angle with each score, do we conclude that the ears on the left and the absence of same on the right would be due to uneven heat in the oven? I'm not belaboring this point in terms of aesthetics...the bread tastes fabulous and it looks good...I'm just curious if I may have an unevenly heated oven, and if so, whether there may are any techniques to mitigate this. Thank you!

flournwater's picture

The pressure that builds inside the baking loaf is not entirely uniform because the distribution of the CO2 lnside the loaf is not uniform.  Pressure will force the dough to move in the direction of least resistence and once a scored point begins to expand it will continue to be the superior point of expansion, even when the other scored points begin to open up.  Also, no matter how hard you try, it's difficult to get every score precisely the same as another and that, too, can make a difference.

I made this loaf:

sometime last year.  The scoring of the design was a meticulous process that happend to turn out quite well, probably because the scoring is confined to the crowned portion of the loaf where expansion tends to be more equal.  If I had located the design further down the sides of the loaf I'm certain they would have been less uniform.