Baking Bread in the New Thermapen Kitchen
Homemade bread is a beautiful, nostalgic bombardment of the senses. The thick, floury scent that fills the kitchen as it rises; the quiet excitement of the loaf left to cool; the rustle of a knife eagerly breaking through its golden shell.
Here at Thermapen we’ve been building a new test kitchen so that we can experiment with more recipes using our products. Forever inspired by all of the mouth-watering bakes on The Great British Bake Off, we thought that the perfect way to try out all of our shiny new equipment was to make three delicious loaves to celebrate last week’s Bread Week.
The French baguette is the epitome of simplicity and versatility. This crisp loaf is beautiful for breakfast served warm with jam, loaded with soft cheese for lunch or drizzled with garlic butter to accompany a hearty pasta dinner.
The temperature of the dough just after being mixed is essential to how long it will take to proof. 2 °C can make an hour’s difference to the typical bulk fermentation duration. We used this great guide from The Perfect Loaf to calculate our times, ensuring that we tested the temperature of the dough at regular intervals to check that it was being maintained.
These plump, conker-coloured pretzels are the perfect autumn bake. The soft and chewy dough features a strong IPA that produces a rich flavour best complimented by brown or grainy mustard.
Temperature consistency is essential throughout the baking process. It’s optimum for dough produced with regular active dried yeast to remain at just above 27°C during proofing, as much hotter than this can decline the activity of the yeast.
The Signature Bake round on Tuesday night was tear-and-shares, and for us there’s nothing better than a thick Italian focaccia, packed with fresh garlic, rosemary and plenty of olive oil. Giving the dough plenty of time to rise meant that it was light and airy, its salty surface made even better by the addition of olives.
Because we were using a new oven we decided to use the Dot Digital Oven Thermometer to see if the temperature inside the oven was accurate. We set the alarm on the thermometer so it alerted us when the oven reached our desired temperature, and it enabled us to see that this was maintained throughout the baking process.
It was great to trial out our new kitchen, ensuring our bread was proved to perfection!