Warning: You might want several of these…

Have you ever head of a Banneton?  If you love making your own bread, then you might have…

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A Banneton is a bread proofing basket.  And you can find them here at Amazon, or also here at F.A. Birnbaum Brotformen Mahlis. Don’t ask me how to pronounce that name, but these guys have been making these things since 1847!

The Birnbaum Co. has a way more interesting selection than Amazon, but I had already ordered mine before I found their site. But I know I’ll be ordering more of them in the future, because I can’t help myself.  Too many fun shapes to choose from!

My two Bannetons arrived at my door last Thursday.  I ordered the baguette shape with the hope of making nicer looking baguettes.  Because honestly, mine would make any french person cringe.  My bread always comes out a little flatter than i’d like.

Now, you have to “season” these things before using them in order to keep your bread dough from sticking. Because you do want it to fall out onto your stone like its supposed to, right?  So I did that first, with a spray bottle of water and a generous dusting of flour.  And, if you want to see an example of how that’s done you can look it up on Youtube.  It’s way easy.

Next, I loaded in my dough. You have to stop and think about it if you’re a little “slow” like me, because you put your loaf in the banneton with the top of the loaf facing down.  Seems odd, but when you turn the bread out onto the stone, the top is then right side up with the lovely pattern showing.  Reminds me of that Pirates of the Caribbean movie, when Jack Sparrow figures out he has to turn the ship upside down to get to wherever it is he needs to go, or whatever.  Anyway…

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This is what my bread looked like when all was said and done. The only problem was my pizza stone.  It’s a tad shorter than the loaves, and the end of my baguette would hang over the edge.  (Hence the tiny loaf on the side you see in the photo – because I had to lop off a few inches to make it fit!)

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So now I have to find one of the larger, square baking stones to fit my loaves on.  But one can never have too many baking stones, right? ~A

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