During baking, the bread will finish swelling and will take on a beautiful golden colour.
The furnace should be preheated to a temperature preferably around 300°C. If your oven does not reach this temperature, preheat it to the maximum.
The ideal way to avoid wasting heat inside the oven is to put the bread in the oven using an oven shovel, on which you will have sprinkled wheat semolina that will act like a ball bearing, and place it on a plate already preheated in the oven.
Turn the ball obtained during the shaping on the plate or shovel so that the key is at the bottom. Then make the grigne before putting it in the oven.
The mist blow
After one minute, open your oven, throw a glass of water at the bottom of the oven and close the door very quickly. A cloud of mist will form inside the oven. Repeat the operation after 5 minutes.
This humidity is very important because it is what will make the crust crispy. In addition, a small bowl of water can be placed at the bottom of the oven during preheating, or water can be sprayed directly on the bread, either just before baking it or several times during baking.
During the first few minutes of baking at a very high temperature (between 250 and 300°C), the crust will form and turn brown. It will swell enormously during these first few minutes and normally should burst along the snack marks.
After about ten minutes, when the desired colour is reached, the oven temperature should be lowered to around 210°C for 20 minutes, then the baking should be completed at 190°C to allow the crumb to continue baking without the crust burning.
Depending on the weight of the bread, the baking time will be different. The larger the loaves, the longer the cooking time will be. Thus, it takes almost an hour of cooking time for loaves of one kilo, but only 20 minutes of baking time for rolls.
Each oven is different, so you will probably need to do a few tests before you find the perfect baking time for your oven.
Once the baking is finished, take the bread out of the oven and let it cool in the same room on a toaster. The baking continues inside the bread! It is best to wait until the bread has almost completely cooled before starting the loaf of bread. In addition, it is imperative to let the bread cool on a toaster. Indeed, the one here releases moisture that could soften the crust.
In order, here is the process of baking a loaf of bread:
Activation of fermentation Until the temperature of 50 °C, the yeast continues its action and is even overactivated, then it dies.
Expansion of the dough The increase in carbon dioxide production and heat expansion cause the volume of the dough pieces to increase and the size of the cells inside the crumb to increase. The formation of the grignum favours the expansion of the gas.
When the internal temperature reaches 50°C, the yeast cells die.
Activation of amylolysis The rise in temperature to 70°C causes the activation of amylases, which thus produce an increase in maltose (hydrolysis of starch).
Starch gelation Unprocessed starch gels as poison from 55°C to 83°C.
Gluten coagulation Gluten coagulates under the action of heat from 70 °C to 98 °C and gives the bread its final structure. The crumb will remain creamy-white because at no time will its internal temperature exceed 100°C.
Formation of the crust From 100 °C, the water vaporizes and thus causes the surface of the dough to dry out.
Dextrinization This is the first step in colouring the crust under the effect of heat and humidity, thanks to sugars such as maltose and dextrins located on the surface of the bread.
Caramelization From 160°C, residual sugars caramelize.
Roasting of the crust From 170 °C, the crust is coloured and produces its specific aromas. These condensation reactions between an amino acid and a sugar, which lead to non-enzymatic browning, are called Maillard reactions. They allow the production, during baking, of flavours, aromas and coloration of the bread crust.