The Fresh Loaf

A Community of Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts.

Dutch Oven?

JeffyWu's picture

Dutch Oven?

Is there a formula for taking a recipe that calls for "conventional" baking on a stone and converting it into one using a dutch oven? I have had wonderful success with dutch oven specific loaves and was wondering if there was a way to use it in a recipe that doesn't involve a dutch oven. Thanks!

barryvabeach's picture

It should bake about the same.  It is possible that if you are using the DO to support the sides of the loaf, you might reduce the hydration a bit,  but the time should be similar.  The main reason we use a DO is to trap in the steam that gets released from baking the dough. 

louiscohen's picture

My experience with commercial yeast and sourdough, high whole grain % doughs, is that dutch oven baking pretty much matches published recipes calling for a baking stone and steam.

When the formula says steam for 20 minutes and the bake another 20, just remove the lid from the dutch oven at the end of the steaming time.

I never had much success with steaming pans; my guess is that my home ovens have been vented so that the steam just escapes.  

I preheat the oven and dutch oven for a full hour.  I lower the loaf into the dutch oven using parchment paper, which remains in the dutch oven until the baking is done.  Once the loaf is in the dutch oven I spritz it and the inside of the dutch oven with water to make the steam.

Another advantage of the dutch oven is that the heat inside is pretty uniform; there is no need to rotate/move the loaf on a stone, or even rotate the dutch oven, even if the oven temp is not completely uniform.