Sourdough (rec.food.sourdough) Discussing the hobby or craft of baking with sourdough. We are not just a recipe group, Our charter is to discuss the care, feeding, and breeding of yeasts and lactobacilli that make up sourdough cultures.

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Old 13-04-2007, 06:33 PM posted to rec.food.sourdough
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Default Required equipment for SD Baking

Mike Avery wrote:

Oven thermostats, to be kind, suck rocks. Most are off by
considerable amounts, and many vary. So, you set your oven
to 350F and the next think you know, your bread has turned to
mahogany (the phrase one of my employees used to describe the
bread when he burned it. He's a used car salesman now.) The
oven shoots to 500, drops to 250, and then climbs to 450.
I've seen oven temperatures fluctuate all over the place.

Using an oven thermometer lets you know what is really
happening, and when you need to call the repairman.


I'm sure that's true. I've actually got one, myself. But I got it after my
oven started acting crazy to see what was going on (digital control was shot
-- I rent, and when I finally buy a place, we're going analogue ...).

I'd heartily recommend that someone get an oven thermometer if they're
experiencing problems, but I wouldn't tell a newbie that it's a required
piece of equipment before starting to bake.

--
Jef


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Old 13-04-2007, 07:56 PM posted to rec.food.sourdough
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Default Required equipment for SD Baking

On Apr 13, 12:33 pm, "Jeff Miller" wrote:

I'd heartily recommend that someone get an oven thermometer if they're
experiencing problems, but I wouldn't tell a newbie that it's a required
piece of equipment before starting to bake.


Then what happens is the bread doesn't brown right and nobody knows
whether the newbie over-proofed it or the oven was doing the herky-
jerk.

I agree with you about the baskets though. A bowl with an old napkin
works fine.

And I don't care how the proof box works, an oven light, a box with
warm water... even going to the moon with aquarium heaters and pumps
g... I'm not crazy about watching bread rise... it's about as
interesting as watching paint dry.

The dough thermometer, however, is pretty useful, particularly when
you're trying to fine tune the flavor. I think it helps newbies
because it allows them to follow a procedure. Most decent baking
books, Hamelman comes to mind, are specific about retard and proof
temps. And... proofing issues are one of the most common problems
posted here. What do we always ask? Temperature? What do they never
know? The temperature.



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