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Tools and Materials for Bread
Bread Class
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Lesson 2: Tools and Materials for Bread
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The following is a complete list of what materials, tools, and foodstuffs are used in this class.

Kitchen Tools

We will be using all of these tools in almost every lesson:

These tools are used with less frequency but still relevant to the home baker's arsenal:

Foodstuffs

We use the following kinds of yeast, or dough leaveners, in this class:

Flours used in this class - for a deeper dive into Flour, check out the 'Wheat is AWESOME' section in the first lesson:

Other ingredients used in this class:


Understanding the Tools

Baking Pan - We'll use a Baking Pan for your First Loaf, and Whole Wheat Bread. A versitile option for lots of dough recipes, and a great addition to any kitchen

Baking Stone - Used in this class for making pizzas and baguettes, but handy for oodles of other baking projects.

Banneton Basket - A woven basket or bowl, optionally lined with linen or smooth cloth, used to hold a shaped loaf while it is going through its final rise.

Bench Scraper - A bench scraper is an invaluable tool in this class, necessary to cut doughs and pull doughs off of countertops.

Bowl Scraper - A bowl scraper may be the most used tool in this class, they come in all different shapes and sizes. I like to have a few different shapes on hand for all different kinds of bowl shapes and dough consistencies. The orange one coated in silicone is great for really wet doughs, while the plastic ones stand up against more rigid doughs

Bread Knife - Get a good serrated knife. The worst is trying to cut into a loaf of bread and having to squish it because your knife sucks. Use long sawing actions and go slow, let the knife and gravity do the work, you don't need to apply tons of pressure to get a perfect slice.

Cleaning Brushes - One for your dishes, and one for your fingers and nail beds. Sponges are pretty useless when it comes to cleaning up doughy messes, they seem to come up more quickly with the help of a cleaning brush.

Cooling Rack - A pedestal on which to place all the glorious breads that you pull out of the oven or off the stove. We will use a this rack in every lesson to ensure even cooling of crust with plenty of air circulating around all sides of your dough.

Dough Cutters - We'll use these in our English Muffin Lesson. In all honesty I use them more often as egg molds for fried eggs than I do for cutting biscuits, they are a very handy kitchen tool to have.

Dutch Oven - For this class, I recommend getting a combination dutch oven, these things are awesome, you can use them as a skillet, a pot, or a dutch oven. In this class, we will use the combination cooker to make Sourdough, Pizza, English Muffins, and Flat Bread. If you do decide to go with this cooker, be sure to get some of these handles, and really good oven mitts because dutch ovens get VERY HOT.

Flour Wand - This tool is handy and it also makes you feel like a magical bread wizard. You're able to quickly dust surfaces with 1 tablespoon of flour, allowing you to keep track of just how much flour you're incorporating as you knead and work each dough.

Jars or small plastic food storage containers - Great for maintaining starters in, doing small pre-ferments for sourdough, pizza, and baguettes - If I am not using a jar, I typically use these awesome deli containers. They are reusable and resilient!

Kitchen Towels - Specifically, the kind that are made out of woven fabrics, not terry cloth. We use kitchen towels in lots of ways, so stock up on at least 4 or 5 just for breadmaking.

Lame - This is a special kind of double-sided blade used to cut open the tops of bread loaves right before they go into the oven. You can use a very sharp knife or even a box cutter.

Mixing Bowls - A good mix of bowls with lids and clear bowls are downright imperative in this class. In a pinch, you can use a large sealable food container too. The doughs in this class spend a lot of time hanging out in mixing bowls, fermenting and rising. You will typically use at least two mixing bowls per lesson.

Oven Bags - I use oven bags to create little microclimates in rising doughs. It is extremely dry where I live, so I put bowls and rising doughs in these large turkey bags to create little humid terrariums, making sure the dough never dries out. We will go over this more in the sourdough lesson.

Pizza Cutter - To cut pizza and flatbread! Yum!

Pizza Peel - A pizza peel is not a necessary tool for this class, but it makes transferring doughs WAY less scary around super hot ovens. In a pinch, you can use a broad wooden cutting board, or even a cookie sheet.

Scale - We will use this in every lesson to measure our ingredients. We measure the weight of ingredients because it is far more accurate to measure a weight 500g of flour than it is to try and measure the volume of 2 1/4 cups of flour. Remember, baking is all about accuracy and consistency. Bakers love to know exactly how much of each ingredient they are adding to their mixtures and ferments, breadmaking is really a science where small amounts of ingredients may impact our resultant loaves significantly. If you already have a scale and it doesn't list grams, please use this handy converter :)

Scoop - Surprisingly handy, I use it more than I ever thought I would. It's very handy in lots of situations. Having a dedicated dry ingredients scoop when trying to measure the weight of ingredients makes fast work when moving around in the kitchen.

Thermometer - temperature is a huge factor in bread making. We will use thermometers in this class to make sure our ambient temperatures aren't affecting our dough rise too dramatically. When dough becomes too cold or too hot it begins to impact your rise time. I recommend getting an oven thermometer, a probe thermometer, and an ambient temperature thermometer. SCIENCE!!


What's Next

In our next lesson, our first loaf will teach you how to make a classic country white bread. This loaf comes together quickly and gets you measuring, mixing, kneading, and forming like a skilled baker from the beginning. Yum!

CLASS PROJECT

Share a photo of your finished project with the class to complete the lesson!

Nice work! You've completed the class project