Artisan bread tools that will give you the edge.

"Are you looking to make artisan style bread at home? While it is clear that one needs to follow the various techniques used for many hundreds of years in order to achieve this, it also really helps to have the right tools.
There are several tools of the artisan bread trade that contribute to one achieving the robust, full flavoured and crusty breads typically made by artisan bakeries. By using these tools, you can come very close to emulating these breads in your own home!" 

These tools are available for purchase.   Email Marlisa : office@iledepain.co.za to place you order.

Wicker proofing baskets

Wicker proofing baskets - also known as ‘banneton’ or ‘brotform’ –   are used to provide additional support to the shaped loaf during its final proof.  The baskets, which come in various shapes, also aid in the absorption of excess moisture from the dough and prevents sticking. If you line the baskets with linen you will achieve a smooth texture on your loaf and if left unlined the pattern of the basket will be imprinted.

Couche

A couche is a traditional artisan bread maker’s tool. It comprises a length of natural, untreated linen designed for supporting soft doughs during proofing. Shaped loaves are placed in between the folds of linen to help the dough maintain its shape during proofing and to prevent the loaves from proofing into each other. The couche also absorbs any excess moisture in the dough, minimising any stickiness during proofing and helps to give an artisan loaves its typical chewy, crusty crust. 

Bread transfer boards

Bread transfer boards are used for moving the final proofed dough without damaging the intended shape and is a traditional tool used for handling artisan breads. Made of untreated beechwood, this lightweight material allows the baker to easily transfer proofed baguettes and other loaves from the couches to the oven.

Lame

A lame is double-sided blade used to score or slash the bread dough just moments before it is placed in the oven. It is used to achieve the desired “grigne” (which is the “ear” that appears on perfectly made baguettes). The reason for scoring the dough is to allow the dough to expand properly. The slash (often done in a decorative way and a signature of an individual baker), enables this expansion to take place. 

T-steam bar

A T-steam bar is one of the essential items required to produce that exquisite amber-crusted artisan style bread. Why? Well, steam enables two things to happen. It moistens the baking environment so that the loaf can expand properly during the oven spring (what happens when the dough expands), and it also moistens the outer layer of starch (sugar) in the dough, which is needed in order for proper darkening of the crust to take place, which is one of the wonderful characteristics of artisan bread. The T-steam generates this required steam and covers the rising bread at the critical stage during baking.