Originally Posted by DaveOmak
Have you tried a pan of water in the oven for steam ..... some stoves need it...
I haven't, since it calls for baking in a Dutch oven with the lid on, I was under the impression that it got its steam from the high level of moisture in the dough. I've steamed baguettes and had better results, so maybe that's the ticket.
I may try that. It's essentially the same recipe ,but no Dutch oven and uses the steam pan that Dave mentioned.
Originally Posted by Tank
I just got into making this recipe recently. Where in your oven are you placing your dutch oven? I started out placing my dutch oven toward the bottom of my oven. Since then I have moved it up. In my experience the higher in the oven the bread sits the softer the crust gets. Also when are you taking temps of your bread? I can not verify this but read somewhere that after the lid is removed most of the baking is done and without the lid is just to firm up the crust. Maybe take a temp reading when the lid is removed and shorten the cook time without the lid. Also does your oven tend to run a little hot?
I usually put it smack dab in the middle, but I'll try lifting it up. My oven is usually right on target. In fact, with this last batch I ran it at 425˚ rather than the 450˚ the recipe calls for, thinking that maybe I'd been over cooking it.
Thanks for the help everyone. I really can't figure out the problem. This recipe is well documented and pretty famous, and I seem to be the only one having this problem. So its clearly something I'm doing. I've followed the recipe to a "T", as well as making small tweaks to try to alleviate the problem, but still I get the inedible crust. I've used different Dutch ovens, and even 2 different ovens as we got a new one a couple years ago. I'm not giving up. there has to be a solution!!