Best Bread Pans?
Posted 31 January 2009 - 09:39 AM
I have experimented a few times with stainless steel, and it just doesn't work right. I've concluded that the metal reflects too much heat away. It tends to leave everything soggy and undercooked, with the worst of it at the bottom. I haven't tried the non-stick stuff, as I don't like the idea of the silicon coating, or whatever it is.
Anyway, I'm wondering if those who have trouble baking gluten-free breads might have better results just by changing the type of pan they use. It doesn't seem to be part of the discussions that I've ever noticed. But a number of people have mentioned that it helps to make smaller loaves. Might the pan be an important factor in all this? One nice feature of the pyrex stuff, is that you can see how the bread is baking inside the pan, not just on the surface. They seem to conduct heat well, for even baking too. Things generally don't stick much either, though perhaps that is due in part to the absence of gluten.
So, I think it might prove very helpful to get feedback from all us gluten-free bakers, as to the type of pan -vs- the results achieved. Do your breads turn out well, and what type of pan do you use? How tricky is it in terms of ingredient measurement, baking time and temperature? I rarely measure now, but started out measuring until I felt comfortable just eyeballing it. I've sorta settled on a lower baking temp than I anticipated, though I suspect the oven is on the hot side anyway.
Posted 31 January 2009 - 10:47 AM
MP - celiac for 10 years
Posted 31 January 2009 - 11:05 AM
The other thing I do, is if it's being baked in a loaf pan, I always TEST THE RESULTS before pulling it out permanently. I take a table knife and stick it in to the bottom and pull it out and make sure it's clean- you'd be surprised how often it's not, there's something sticky on the tip, and 5 to 10 more minutes makes a big difference.
I like the small 8" round cast iron pan the most for doing quick breads. Heat it up stovetop with the oil, pour in the batter, cook it a bit, and finish by putting it under the broiler. This way it cooks superquickly, I don't have to use xanthan gum, and it comes out consistantly for me, about an inch tall. I then cut the round into 4 wedges and split the wedges for toast or sandwiches. Okay, my sandwiches are now always triangles but at least the bread tastes good and is functional.
The second kind of pan I am using for loaf breads is the mini- loaf size, which unfortunately the only type I can find seems to be non stick coated--- yuck. I noticed the recipes for a full size loaf seemed to be able to be cut in half to make 2 minis easily, which then bakes up much better. The same recipe will bake up more evenly in an 8" x 4", but then there is leftover batter. A full size loaf pan takes forever to bake, and has trouble cooking all the way thru. While I can get a pretty nice little mini loaf out of one of the mini pans, I despise the non stick coating, which seems to be coming off already- I do not want to be eating this stuff, I have enough problems already.
Posted 01 February 2009 - 09:43 AM
Takala: It sounds like your triangle bread is a perfect quick pizza crust.
Isn't an 8x4 bread pan the usual size?
Posted 01 February 2009 - 10:36 AM
The irony of the hearthkit was my dh got it for me as a X-mas present because since I was 15 I had been trying to make a loaf of bread that was really chewy and crusty. Really hard to make or find anywhere. I finally used this plus a biga bread recipe and made the best bread. It was perfect and just what I was trying to make. Made one loaf and right after that I found out I had to go gluten-free. Sometimes, life is just really not fair...
Forgot to add I'm not a fan of teflon. It's just what seemed to work best. I won't use it if it gets scratched and my teenager cleaned it the other day w/ a scouring ball and so I had to buy new ones. Found them at Krogers btw.
Posted 01 February 2009 - 01:32 PM
yes the glass pan people did a very expensive metal pan that was a dream to use.
Then I discovered Silicone baking moulds and I'm hooked,
I very seldom use metal pans except maybe spring form pans for large cakes,
and even then I base line them with teflon baking paper cut to size
Here's 2 reports from about.com.
Article on Silicone Bakeware from About.Com
Silicone Bakeware Basics from About.Com
Diagnosed in Nov 2005 after Biopsy and Blood Tests
Cannot tolerate Codex Wheat Starch.
Self Taught Baker.
Bake everything from scratch using naturally gluten-free ingredients.
Posted 01 February 2009 - 02:43 PM
I looked up the silicone stuff online because it seems so weird. The online jury is definitely out. Some people loved them. Others worried about the bright colors leaching out. Still others had the stuff out-gas really noxious fumes so badly as to make them totally unusable.
There really was no consensus so I decided to pass for now and stay with my glass pans.
"You don't need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows" probably was not referring to us . . .
"For the love of
The person we most dislike is still a soul for whom Christ died. (David Jeremiah)
Posted 02 February 2009 - 03:13 AM
Thus far, what has worked best for me (quick-breads), is to put a piece of foil over the top of the pan while it rises (in the oven). The foil keeps it from drying out too early, otherwise it will crack as it tries to rise, thus won't rise well. Once risen, I remove the foil, and bake it the rest of the way. The glass pan makes this process easy, since you can monitor the progress. Oven temp is obviously important, because the hotter it is, the sooner the outside will get done before the inside.
Posted 02 February 2009 - 04:41 AM
Posted 02 February 2009 - 06:12 AM
I always bake in glass. Literally, everything. Well, not Chebe, but those are individual little balls or buns, and when I make buns I use the small Pyrex bowls for them anyway. I use stainless steel pans for stovetop, and I've never had issues with either. I have tried to use various stainless and non-stick baking pans in the oven, my stuff always burned on the edge, I hate that. Glass handles so well for me that even when I screw up and overbake something the edge doesn't go black. I have one big enamel coated cast iron casserole dish, and that's it. I would LOVE to have all enameled bakeware, but I certainly can't afford it.
I just started experimenting with a small pyrex bowl for making buns, biscuits and such. The results I'm getting are by far the best yet. The diameter is approximately 4 inches, which IMO is just about perfect. It's the two cup size shown here. The only thing I wish they had done is to put handles on it. For anyone having trouble getting breads to come out right, I'd recommend trying something small like that. This is one of the things which prompted me to start this thread.
They also make pyrex ramekins, but those are only 7 ounces. I may eventually get some for muffins/cupcakes.
What I miss is a biscuit with a nice crispy crust.
Posted 02 February 2009 - 09:57 AM
I thought a standard loaf bread pan for yeast breads was 9" x 5", that's what some of my really old ones are that I don't use anymore. Then the next size was 8" x 4", (the size that works with a lot of quick breads) and then the mini loafs vary in size but are around 2.5 to 3" x 5.5 to 6", and then there is something even smaller than those that is still being called a "mini" loaf, or "petite loaf pan, that is about 2" x 3" or 2" x 4". At that point somebody really ought to be calling it a cupcake brick maker. They look like multiple cupcake pans with 6 or more rectangle shapes instead of circles.
Speaking of biscuits, I tried making the quick rising version of the infamous NY Times no- knead bread, recipe adapted to be gluten free bread, and ended up with something that looked and tasted exactly like the world's largest gluten free biscuit. I'm like, okay, this thing has a crust and it's round but Good Grief you'd think it was the Pinnacle of Baking Achievement from the reviews and to my mind the thing needs more fat in the recipe.
Posted 02 February 2009 - 10:48 AM
Posted 03 February 2009 - 08:46 AM
Posted 04 February 2009 - 03:53 AM
Posted 04 February 2009 - 01:48 PM
But I do love to bake and read cookbooks. For cookies and pumpkin roll I use my very beat up old pans. My family are candy makers and we used to have probably 50 of these pans in our candy store. I'm guessing they are aluminum but I don't know for sure. They are very heavy. I was given a couple of the nonstick thin ones but everything seams to burn on those for me. I don't use them much. I have used everything for pies from disposable for gifts to metal to glass. I have a couple of thin metal pie tins I love but my favorite are my 10" Pyrex. Not because they bake any better but because they make a BIG pie!! I always make pies by placing my pans on top of one of those cookie sheets. I started because my fruit pies would sometimes bubble over. I kept doing it because I noticed everything baked more even and well cooked throughout. I use metal pans lined with nonstick sheets when I bake 3 layer cakes also on cookie sheets.
Last night I was reading a cookbook with heirloom recipes. One story for a cake said the contributor's aunt told her to always put this cake into a cold oven so that there would be a good thick crust. The author's note said when they tested it that this was true. I only preheat my oven for my pizza stone otherwise everything starts out cold. I didn't know that about the crust but I wonder if it works for bread too.
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