Thursday, July 7, 2011

Bake the Bread at 450°F to set the cell walls.

I didn't know this about baking bread, maybe you did. It makes me think of baking pumpkin pies. Because if you don't bake the Pumpkin Pie at 
425°F and then lower it to 
350°F you've got a Pie that won't set up properly. Hey, I tried it, to see if I could bake a traditional pumpkin pie in my solar oven. 
This bread baking information comes from the county extension office.

Correct baking temperature is most necessary for high quality bread. When the bread is 
ready to bake, put it into an oven which has been preheated to 450° F. This temperature sets the 
cell walls quickly and stops further rising.

In Utah’s high altitudes and dry climates, bread baked at 450°F for 35 to 40 or 45 minutes 
will be better than if it is baked at a lower temperature for a longer time. The baking time varies 
with the altitude. The higher the altitude the longer will be the baking time.

If you find your bread getting too brown when the oven registers 450°F you probably 
have an inaccurate register. Check your oven with a good oven thermometer. Have your gas or 
power company check your oven thermostat.

Keep the oven at 450°F for the entire baking period unless your particular oven does too 
much browning. If you have to turn it down to 400° or 425°F do this after it has baked at 450°F 
for 15 or 20 minutes. This high temperature at the beginning will stop the yeast action and set the 
cell walls.

Much bread which has been handled properly at every stage up to baking fails to reach a 
high standard because it goes into an oven which is not hot enough. Bread baked from dough 
which got too light, will have a coarse, overly porous texture and a thick coarse crust.

Bread baked in an oven where the temperature is uneven may develop a large crack on
one side of the loaf. We call this a shell crack. This shell crack comes from imperfect circulation 
in the oven. The uneven heat may be due to a faulty oven. It may come from crowding too many 
loaves into the oven so the hot air cannot circulate evenly around each loaf. The shell crack 
comes on the coolest side of the loaf.

I'll try this the next time I make traditional bread.

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