Slicing Bread: Why And What Is The Best Way?

Many people know that bread should be cut before baking. But why actually? We will tell you what scoring the dough pieces does, which tool is suitable, and how to cut patterns into the bread.

Cut the bread properly

Many baking recipes state that you should score the dough for bread or rolls before it goes into the oven. It may look pretty in the finished pastry, but it has a very practical background in the first place. Since gases escape during baking – for example from the dough of pumpkin bread – a “valve” is needed. And it is precisely this type of valve that the cuts form. If you do not cut bread, it may tear open uncontrollably when baking. The result is unsightly formations, like you might have come out of your oven before. This can be avoided if the dough pieces are allowed to stand long enough to proof and are properly scored. Is your yeast dough not rising? Read helpful SOS tips in our expert knowledge.

Simply or artistically cut bread

Depending on the bread recipe, the cuts look different. They can go across the loaf in a cross shape – this is how round bread can be cut in particular – or run across as with elongated dough pieces. With pointed buns, a long, central cut is also popular. If you want to make a particularly nice cut into the bread, place several crosswise and lengthwise cuts in a criss-cross pattern to create a diamond pattern. Spirals, leaves, herringbones, or compass-like shapes can also be incorporated into the dough pieces. Whichever type of bread you choose, it is important to have the right tool. You can use a sharp knife to score the bread, but a special cutter works better. With the thin, curved blade, the cuts are precise, even, and at the right depth. This should be about 1 cm.

Slicing technique and baking tips for the perfect bread

The right angle is also crucial for the look and function of the patterns and cuts. Round pieces of dough look nice with a cutting angle of 45 degrees, while 30 degrees are sufficient for long ones such as baguettes. If the bread is to tear open on the sides, 90 degrees is recommended. In addition to cutting bread, moisture and temperature also play a major role in achieving the best possible baking result. The pastry often works best when it is steamed. For this you can use the appropriate function of the stove, put a flower sprayer or a fireproof bowl with water on the floor. Baking usually takes place under high heat, after which the temperature is regulated down. This makes the bread wonderfully crispy on the outside and soft and juicy on the inside.

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