We don't have a real oven. When we moved here I couldn't imagine baking in 100 degree heat, then we were in a rental and unsure if we would be permanently staying in Mérida. When we were remodeling our kitchen we decided to put in a wall oven instead of buying a whole new range since we were happy with our Bosch stove top. At that time, I could not find a decent built in oven for less than $10,000 mxp, which was a great deal more than a entire top of the line stove would have been. Our compromise was to buy a tabletop convection oven, big enough to bake one loaf of bread or 6 muffins at one time.
As my last post explained, I have been reading a blog about crockpotting, and the Crockpot Lady actually baked in her crockpot. What intrigued me is that she advocated keeping the lid ajar so the steam can escape.
My friend had shared her sourdough starter with me. It's a great starter, but my sourdough bread has been lacking something. I researched sourdough bread, one thing that they do in San Francisco is use steam injecting ovens! There are work arounds for the home baker, putting water in a pan in the bottom of the oven (not possible in my oven) or spraying with an atomizer.
I decided to try baking one loaf of bread in the crockpot. Sourdough bread has several rises, I let the dough rise once for 2 hours. After punching down the dough I divided it into two loaves, one I set to rise again in the normal fashion the second, I put in the crockpot.
There were a few challenges since my pot is round, I decided that a round loaf would be best,for a mold I used a mini spring form pan. I wasn't sure if I wanted the bread to sit in the water, so I used the trivet from my pressure cooker to hold the loaf a quarter inch above the water.
Since this was an experiment, I decided to use already boiling water which I neglected to measure. The crockpot was set on low for 4 hours the lid was put tightly on, since the idea was to use steam.
Here is my result:
The bread was not as chewy as I would like, for a whole wheat loaf it rose nicely. I think the crust looked great. The taste was good but not San Francisco Sourdough good, I believe the lack of gluten in the flour plus the fact that the recipe I used contained milk and butter may have contributed to the consistency.
I will definitely do this again though.