Close But Never There

Still I’m working on the sourdough crust.  Still.  Now I’m thinking that my baking stone is impeding heat flow to the center of the loaf, which is why I get an ear on either end and less oven spring in the middle, giving me a dumbbell-shaped loaf of bread.  Well…I was thinking that until I tried an experiment this weekend:  one loaf on a cookie sheet and one on the baking stone.  This experiment happened just before our Easter party, and my wife was trying cook the quiche and accusing me of hogging both ovens, which was absolutely true.  So one proofed almost an hour more than the other.  The cookie sheet loaf proofed longer and yet it puffed out like a party balloon, no ears at all.  The lesser-proofed loaf on the stone had good ears but a dumbbell shape.  [sigh] I think I know who the real dumbbell is.  So I’m back to stones, roasting pan cover for eight minutes, and adequate proofing.  And the quest continues.

Since it’s springtime, and that means bunnies and bees and gardens and flowers and sh*t, I’ll end with a picture from our garden.  I take no responsibility for this lettuce—it’s my wife’s handiwork.  I do, however, take full responsibility for the inappropriate cursing.

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