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Clay Breadbaking Without Explosions

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Clay Breadbaking Without Explosions

FallsChurch2 | Jul 25, 2008 09:11 AM

Before I blow up my kitchen, I need some SOS: I'm experimenting with baking my no-knead bread in a parchment-lined clay pot with lid, instead of the usual LC. Problem: Romertopf site says to 1.) soak clay pot in water 15 minutes, then 2.) put the dough in and place pot in a cold oven.
Questions:
1. No-knead dough is pretty wet already; i don't see the need for soaking pot. Will pot blow up if I don't soak first? Or will a dry pot suck out the moisture from dough and leave me with dry bread?
2. Can I pre-heat empty pot in oven, then put the dough in and bake, or will it blow up if preheated empty, then exposed to room-temp dough? (The Romertopf folks warn against temp-shock; I'd hate to shock-crack the pot.)
What say you? Anybody done this before?

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