Yes! Thanks, Chowhounds! Your tips for creating epi loaves worked. Most helpful was the tutorial on King Arthur flour's website: complete with detailed color photos. Everyone at work was super impressed, and BF said it looked like an alien battle weapon.
But now, for the real thanks. Who suggested smearing toothpaste on minor burns? Cuz it worked. I grabbed an oven grill through a hole in my kitchen towel, and yowser, it hurt. I ran it under cold water for a few minutes, then put some toothpaste (not gel) on it and let it dry. It smarted for at least an hour, and throbbed a little all night. The next morning, I cleaned the toothpaste off. The finger was a little tender, but by the next morning did not hurt at all. For the past few days, the bit of skin has been hardening, and I have experienced zero blistering. From the looks of the burn an my past experience, I should have a huge blister right about now. Instead, it's just a little hard patch of skin that doesn't bother me at all. I think it'll heal completely in a week or so.