Want to stop burning the bottom of your sourdough or crusty artisan bread? Here’s an easy way to have perfect bread bases every time.
Put a baking sheet or cookie tray on the shelf underneath your Dutch oven. It’s that easy! A pizza stone will also work in the same way.
Not only will it stop your sourdough base from burning, it will also prevent it from developing such a thick crust on the bottom.
You could try moving the rack you place your dutch oven on up, however if you have a large dutch oven then this may not be possible, so placing a baking sheet underneath is much easier.
Why Does A Baking Sheet Stop Your Bread Base From Burning?
Placing something between your Dutch oven and the base of your oven can lower the heat transfer underneath. Even if you don’t have a heating element on the base of your oven, it will still make a difference (it’s the only thing that stops my base burning – and my element is on the roof of my oven).
To achieve optimal oven spring, sourdough and other artisan breads need a very hot oven – sometimes up to 260 degrees Celsius (500 degree Fahrenheit). At these temperatures, it’s not hard to burn the bottom of your bread. This can affect the aesthetic of your loaf when it’s cut open and cause the crust on the bottom to be black, tough and way too thick.
Need to convert celcius to Fahrenheit or vice versa – this is a handy tool!
This tip will work with any artisan bread that requires high temperatures to rise.
Other Suggestions To Stop Your Sourdough Bread From Burning Are:
- Placing a scrunched you ring of foil under your loaf before placing it in the Dutch Oven (you’d need to use parchment paper to stop your bread sticking to the foil).
- Placing some ice cubes in the base of your Dutch Oven before lowering your bread in (just be careful not to shock your cast iron pot if it’s been in a hot oven). The ice cubes will also create extra steam which is beneficial to baking sourdough bread.
- Baking your sourdough for 20-30 minutes with the Dutch Oven lid on then taking your loaf out completely and finishing the bake directly on your oven rack. This will reduce the contact your bread has with the scorching base of your Dutch Oven, which will stay hot, even if your oven is turned down.
- While it won’t completely stop the base of your bread from burning, ensuring you use a layer of parchment or baking paper between your bread and the base of your Dutch Oven does help. It also stops your bread from sticking to the base.
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