HOW TO AVOID BURNING THE BOTTOM OF YOUR SOURDOUGH BREAD
Bread can come out looking great on top, but burnt on the bottom. There are solutions to this problem, but most importantly you need to figure out why it is happening.
Below we look at some possibilities:
WHY YOUR SOURDOUGH BREAD IS BURNING ON THE BOTTOM
The most common, if not obvious reason, is that the bottom of your loaf is cooking at a faster rate than the top. Maybe you are placing the loaf too close to the bottom element in the oven, or baking on high thermal conductivity material.
Some ovens have an airflow design that channels hot air from the bottom of the oven, heating the underside of the loaf more.
8 TIPS TO PREVENT BURNING THE BOTTOM OF YOUR LOAF
1. LINE WITH PARCHMENT PAPER
High-hydration sourdough sometimes sticks to the container and bakers oil the surfaces to prevent this. However, oil tends to heat up faster and may be the reason for your burning bread. Instead, try lining the bread pan with parchment paper.
2. INSULATE THE WORST HEAT
Place something, like aluminium foil, tile, or a baking tray, between the lower heat element of your oven and the shelf your bread is on to take the edge off of the scalding heat.
3. REPOSITION THE BREAD
Your loaf may also just be placed a bit too close to the heat conductors at thee bottom. Try placing the loaf on a higher shelf in the oven, or stand the bread or Dutch oven on a material with low thermal conductivity, like a baking stone or silicone mat.
4. LOWER THE TEMPERATURE
For all you know, your oven might simply be too hot. Reduce the temperature of the baking surface by spraying it with water and consider using an oven thermometer to check that your oven is not overheating.
5. PREHEAT YOUR OVEN
Preheating your oven is important for your bread to get an even bake. Therefore, to avoid a hotter bottom, make sure that you are preheating your oven for long enough to get the entire oven up to the desired temperature.
6. USE LESS SUGAR
Loaves with additional sugar will brown faster, so you can choose between either reducing the oven temperature, or the amount of sugar you're using.
7. REDUCE DIRECT SURFACE CONTACT
Did you know that you can use cornmeal to slide the dough into the baking vessel in a way that keeps it from making too much direct surface contact? Now you do, and it might just help solve your dilemma.
8. UTILIZE LIGHT-COLOURED BAKEWARE
We all know that dark colours draw more heat from the sun, this applies to your oven as well. Try avoid using dark-coloured bakeware to reduce the time it takes to absorb heat, this should help you to avoid burning your bread before it's done baking.
The above mentioned tips are all the possible methods you can try to avoid burning the bottom of your loaf. Try one, try two, or all of them together, and you'll be sure to find out which works best for you.