Top positive review
37 people found this helpful
Now my baguettes look the part, as well as taste the part!
on 10 June 2014
First things first, buying this tin will NOT suddenly mean you miraculously get that French bread taste in your loaf! I've seen bad reviews given for this and/or similar items saying they think it's useless because they didn't get anything like French bread just because they shoved some ordinary white bread dough into it! Unfortunately, it takes more than that to get the best out of this baguette tin! I've included one recipe for baguette dough that I've found to be very good (especially if you want to part-bake rolls to freeze for later) below.
As for the tin, it's well-made, and fits perfectly inside an ordinary domestic 60cm wide oven. But, whatever you do, DON'T wash it, or even worse, put it in the dishwasher! Again, there are some poor reviews given by people who either did not read, or chose to ignore, the basic care instructions, but basically as long as you have a hot oven and have shaped the dough on a board sprinkled with flour (semolina is optional, but gives a great crust beneath the rolls) and also sprinkled some flour (or, better, semolina - see recipe below) into the tin before inserting the dough for its final prove, you shouldn't have any issues with the bread sticking to the tin. In fact, the more its used, but not washed, the better it becomes. Some people advise wiping the tin with a small amount of vegetable oil before putting back in the cupboard, but I haven't found this necessary - as long as the tin is completely dry before storing, and never washed, it shouldn't develop any rust spots.
My only complaint? I should have bought the large four loaf size! But I will be getting a second double loaf one to remedy that shortly!!
Anyway, as promised, here's the recipe - hopefully it make sense!
450 gm bread flour, plus extra for dusting
2-1/2 tsp. active dry yeast
1-1/2 tsp. salt
375 ml, approx, lukewarm water (see method)
Fine semolina for sprinkling on the baking sheet
1. Use a stand mixer if you have one (it's quite sticky dough). Put flour in the bowl, and add yeast to one side and the salt to the
other (salt retards yeast, so don't mix them until the last minute).
2. Add about 325 ml of the water and start your mixer. Mix on medium-low speed for 1 minute.
3. With a rubber spatula, scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl and the dough hook; the dough should be very sticky - if it's
still a bit dry, add some or all of the remaining water (adding water to a dough is not an exact science - you may need a little
more/less depending on the flour you're using, the heat of your kitchen, the humidity in the air etc!).
4. Mix, scraping down the bowl and hook every 2 minutes, until the dough looks smooth and pulls away from the sides of the
bowl, about 6 minutes more.
5. Use a plastic dough scraper (if you have one) to turn out the dough on to a lightly floured board, then with floured fingers,
work around the dough to fold the edges into the middle. (This step isn't 'essential', but will mean that your dough rises with a
smooth surface with all the untidy folds underneath.)
6. Return the dough to the bowl, with the folded side underneath, cover with a clean tea towel or cling film, and leave to rise until
doubled in size (usually about 1-2 hours, but it won't hurt if it has risen, but you have to leave it for longer).
7. Turn out the risen dough on to your floured board again. Divide into two (for two larger baguettes which will fit this tin) or into
six if you want smaller, individual rolls - cook 2 on each side of the tin, and either leave two aside to shape, prove and either
part-cook or fully-cook after the first four have come out of the oven, or cook two of them 'free form' on a separate baking
sheet sprinkled with fine semolina following the timings below for small rolls)
8. Sprinkle some fine semolina on to your board, then shape your two large, or four small, baguettes into equal lengths (See
[...] for how to do this properly, or simply tuck under the edges
until you have a smooth surface and a 'baguette' shape for each piece!)
9. Sprinkle some more semolina into the tin, then place your shaped dough into it (leaving plenty of space around each one if
you are putting two on each side) and leave to prove, again until doubled in size.
10. Using a sharp razor blade, clean Stanley knife or thin, sharp kitchen knife, make 3 slashes diagonally along large
baguettes, or 2 slashes along smaller ones. Heat your oven to 220C (or the equivalent) and have a small spray bottle full
of water to hand. Give about 10 good squirts of water on the sides and bottom of the oven, then put in the bread and shut
11. Now you have a choice: Either a) part-cook for just 11 mins, then take out and cool completely before freezing (they will cook
from frozen in about 15 minutes at 200C). Or b) cook completely to eat straight away by cooking for around 30 minutes for
the big baguettes, or around 18 minutes for the small ones. Test for 'done-ness' by tapping the bottom of the rolls to see if
they sound hollow, then remove from the tin and leave to cool on a wire rack before eating.