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Sep 17, 2010 03:37 PM

No Knead Bread Help

I occasionally make the no knead bread and while I have no other problems it always burns on the bottom by the time the rest of the bread is done. Has anyone else had this problem? Solutions?

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  1. Which no-knead recipe do you use? On which surface do you bake it: pan? Stone? How long are you preheating? At what temp? How high does the bread rise?

    4 Replies
    1. re: csdiego

      I have been using the Lahey recipe and follow the instructions to a T. Oven at 475 in a dutch oven preheated for 30 min. I used a stone the first time but I stopped in an effort to keep the bottom from burning. The process up to the point of baking works really well and other than the 6 inch diameter circle of black on the bottom looks and tastes great.

      1. re: zenright

        Hmm, I use the same method and I've never had trouble with burning on the bottom. I use an thin enamel roasting pan with a rounded bottom, the kind you'd use for a Thanksgiving turkey but smaller. It's a little unorthodox but it's the only ovenproof thing I have that's big enough and it works.

        Do you have cornmeal on top of the dough before you flip it? That probably acts as a bit of a buffer.

        The only suggestion I can think of is to try a different pan.

        1. re: zenright

          Sounds to me like your oven might be hotter than you think it is. You should get an oven thermometer, and make sure that when you set it at 475, it's actually 475.

          1. re: Indirect Heat

            I don't use the cornmeal, usually just flour but with the kind of burning I am getting I can't imagine cornmeal would provide enough buffer. I have to say I am leaning toward Indirect Heat's assertion that the oven is running hotter than it claims. Though I think I will try the suggestion of a couple layers of parchment as well as investing in a new oven thermometer.

      2. Yeah, a lot of people have this prob with the CI recipe. I use several layers of parchment on the bottom of the DO. This seems to work well.

        2 Replies
        1. re: Becca Porter

          what's the CI recipe? I mean, what's "CI"?

          Here on Chowhound, I've only seen the threads for the Bittman/Lahey no-knead bread that was started a couple of years ago. The bottom of my bread is usually very dark but not burnt. I don't use a stone under the pot and the pot I use is an old Le Creuset casserole pan.

          1. re: oakjoan

            CI is Cook's Illustrated. Search this board for their Almost No-Knead Bread 2.0. The first time, with the oven rack in the lowest position, mine was overly brown on the bottom too.
            Moving the rack one slot higher solved the problem.

        2. Hi -- just signed up here and this is the first thread I see -- something I'm hugely enthusiastic about. I've made the Lahey version more times than I can count (usually with 3 parts white to one part whole wheat flour and a smidgen more yeast, per Lahey's book; easier to slice and, well, just how I like it). Just made 8 loaves for a party. The dark chestnut-y browning is part of the appeal,of course, but the only time I've actually burned the bottom black is when I've attempted two loaves in one oven at the same time. Even heat is key I guess. I use le creuset, with no stone or anything underneath. As a side note -- after doing this regularly, my le creuset was taking a beating. Went on ebay and bought two used ones for under 20 each. They work great, and it doesn't matter how they look.