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Baking bread

Zapper's picture

Baking bread (post #63298)

in

I have been baking bread at home for a long time. I use a stone and bake it in the oven. The only problem I have is when I score the loaves with a sharp knife or razor blae, then bake, I never get the nice sharp egdes that you see in other loaves. Any suggestions as to what I am doing wrong. Thanks

MadMom's picture

(post #63298, reply #1 of 13)

Hold the lame or blade at a 45 degree angle, and don't cut too deeply.  Be sure the blade is really really sharp.

Things are going to get a lot worse before they get worse.
Lily Tomlin

Zapper's picture

(post #63298, reply #2 of 13)

I do that and it is sharp. Is there a possibility the dough has risen enough when I do this? I wait till it has risen then score it just before putting it in rhe oven.

CookiM0nster's picture

(post #63298, reply #3 of 13)

That's the right time to do it. Perhaps you're not slashing deeply enough?

courgette's picture

(post #63298, reply #4 of 13)

When we went to see Julia's kitchen at the Smithsonian, one of her gadgets was a straight razor for slashing her bread. I've never been able to get a good slash either. Gonna get me a straight razor..

knitpik1's picture

(post #63298, reply #5 of 13)

I guess it's just me but I've never been able to use a razor blade. I use a sharp steak knife to slash my bread. Works for me.

KyleW's picture

(post #63298, reply #6 of 13)

This represents one of the truly vexing aspects of my bread baking. I have never been very good at it. I have tried regular knives, exacto knives, plain razor blades and fancy lames. I think the blade is not as important as how it's used.


Angle and depth are the keys. If you want your bread to "smile", meaning have the lip of the cut curl up, the slash needs to be at a fairly flat angle. Hold the blade almost parallel to the top of the loaf. I find that 1/4" deep works best, when I can pull it off.


THe other key seems to be the "sureness" of the cut. Don't hesitate and don't saw. Make the cut quickly in one sure motion. Putting all these elements together ain't easy. The only way to get good at it is to do it over and over again. I don't bake THAT much bread :-)


I understand the frustration. It's the last thing we do to our bread, after hours of TLC, and it's the first thing people notice.


 


There is a very fine line between "hobby" and "mental illness". D.Barry

 

At weddings, my Aunts would poke me in the ribs and cackle "You're next!". They stopped when I started doing the same to them at funerals.

SallyBR's picture

(post #63298, reply #7 of 13)

I feel a bit uncomfortable giving advice about bread baking because I am a real beginner....


but to me, scissors work better than razor blades to the cuts  - I make sure I add some flour to the blade so that it does not stick too much as I cut, and I make a real deep cut. Works for me, much better than the blades (however, I never tried the fancy blades specific for bread baking)


 


 

 

Marcia's picture

(post #63298, reply #8 of 13)

You are surely right that the blade is not as important as how it is used. You must have the courage of your convictions. Not always easy.

Aberwacky's picture

(post #63298, reply #9 of 13)

Yep, the bandaid-ripping method.


One sure, quick pull.


Leigh

"Happiness does not depend on outward things, but on the way we see them." 
-Leo Tolstoy
Fledge's picture

(post #63298, reply #10 of 13)

Full-fledge-flinches

 

You don't scare me

I have an African Grey

KyleW's picture

(post #63298, reply #11 of 13)

Lots of finches, no flinches :-)

 


There is a very fine line between "hobby" and "mental illness". D.Barry

 

At weddings, my Aunts would poke me in the ribs and cackle "You're next!". They stopped when I started doing the same to them at funerals.

Fledge's picture

(post #63298, reply #12 of 13)

hee-hee

 

You don't scare me

I have an African Grey

Zapper's picture

(post #63298, reply #13 of 13)

I want to thank everyone for their response.