Whisk, Rise, Shape
The bakeware and tools used for baking bread are just as important as the recipes – they can be the difference between success and failure. We are fans of the King Arthur Flour Company – their flour, baking accessories and the Baking Hotline (more about the Hotline later).
We were in a "bread–baking mood" and decided to try several of the following King Author Flour tools – and what fun we had.
The following two items were listed as "No-knead." That sounded intriguing – "Want to bake hearth-warming yeast bread? No need to knead; simply use our easy recipes, ingredients, and tools to bake the best breads ever." We took up the challenge!
It is not always easy to find a warm, draft–free spot to "park" the bread dough during the first rising. Or, to judge when the dough has doubled in size. Put those worries aside because the Dough–Rising Bucket is one of our favorite new finds. With this amazing see–through bucket, you can see at a glance where the dough is in the rising process.
Just place the dough in the bucket, cover, remember your starting point, and just wait for it to double. Made of polypropylene, with a 6–quart capacity (clearly marked), it is food–safe, dishwasher–safe and has a snap–on lid. We loved it – it worked like a charm! So easy to use and a must–have accessory. If you add one item to your kitchen inventory, do consider making it this one. There is a smaller sized bucket available as well - the Dough Doubler.
We became aware of this interesting tool during a King Arthur national bread–baking class. It intrigued us and we had to try it. Introduced in their very first catalogue over 20 years ago, the dough whisk has proven to be an extremely popular item and they have sold thousands! The premise of the design is that it mixes yeast dough (stiff or soft) and the dough does not stick to the whisk wires.
We used it for mixing a yeast dough (instead of using an electric mixer) and it lived up to the King Arthur Flour description. We also prepared a quick Beer Bread recipe that required hand mixing and were delighted with the results. The dough whisk was easy to use, the dough did not stick to it and clean–up was a breeze.
The whisk is 15–inches in size, made of Beechwood and stainless steel and hand washing is recommended. It's our new "go-to" bread mixer and once you try it, you will love it!
For no–knead bread recipes, please visit King Arthur Flour No-knead Bread Recipes.
9-inch Springform Pan
We are always looking for multiple uses for baking pans and this Kaiser, non-stick Springform pan is a perfect example of "double duty" usage.
Our 7 year old springform went directly into the giveaway box after testing this exceptional pan. No more oven-soiling leaks, no more hard to remove baked goods. How we love this pan for making pull-a-part challahs and tried it with our new favorite recipe, Sweet Cinnamon Challah. The extra large pan base prevents leaking batter and the non–stick coating and easy release latch allows our baked creations to pop right out of the pan. With a 10–year warranty this is a "gift yourself, and gift others" selection!
A Bratform is a dough–rising basket used to create a floured, coiled pattern on the top of the bread. Granted, it is not your "every day, average bread–making" tool, but we had so much fun using it.
If you have seen Artisan bread that has a beehive shape and a coiled pattern – this is what was used. The Bratform is used for the second rising of the bread dough. The dough is placed into the basket and during the rising process, the coiled–pattern is imprinted into the dough. After the rising, the dough is gently placed onto a baking pan and the finished, baked product is a crusty, floured, coiled–patterned round loaf of bread.
Artisan type bread dough recipes, such as sourdough, are perfect when using this form. Handcrafted of coiled cane, 9–inches in diameter, it is easy to use and to clean. The Brotform will hold a 3-to-5-cup flour bread recipe. An easy, fun way to create a hearty loaf of bread – we used only one bowl and the Dough Whisk to hand mix it
King Arthur Flour Baking Hotline
We had a baking question regarding the Bratform and the recipe we used; the Country Loaf Bread recipe which was suggested for the Bratform. It called for 3 cups of flour and produced a loaf that was delicious but on the small size.
We spoke to a "live person" and received excellent advice from someone who actually knew what a Bratform was and had experience using one (she worked in a bakery). Her advice: A 3–cup flour recipe will produce a smaller sized bread so our results were normal. She recommended using a 4–5 cup flour recipe and suggested sourdough – a perfect bread recipe when using a Bratform.
We were very impressed with the King Arthur Flour Baking Hotline and recommend it for your baking questions.
January 31, 2011