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Sassafras Covered Bread Baker - LaCloche

by Sassafras

Price: CDN$ 99.99
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Only 3 left in stock.
Ships from and sold by City Chef.

Product Features

  • This heavy stoneware bread baker brings an ancient Roman and Greek cooking method to the modern...
  • Sold individually
  • Dimensions: 11"Dia × 6"H


Product Details

  • Product Dimensions: 27.9 x 27.9 x 19.7 cm ; 4.1 Kg
  • Shipping Weight: 4.5 Kg
  • Item model number: 1005
  • ASIN: B00004S1D5
  • Date first available at Amazon.ca: Oct. 26 2011
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #22,809 in Home & Kitchen (See Top 100 in Home & Kitchen)
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Product Description

This heavy stoneware bread baker brings an ancient Roman and Greek cooking method to the modern-day kitchen. Once used as a portable oven for cooking bread, fish, and meats, la cloche (or cooking bell) now helps today's cooks bake lighter, crustier bread, and juicier fish and meats. The unique domed lid allows for even circulation of heat; the unglazed finish of the lid helps pull moisture to create the crackly, golden crust and light crumb similar to breads baked in professional brick-lined ovens. Roasts, chickens, and fish bake as the flavours of the natural juices circulate within the dome, thus preserving moisture and reducing shrinkage. The baker also doubles as a rustic serving plate for finished foods. It fits in a standard size oven with upper racks removed. To use, arrange dough or meat on the bottom dish, cover with the domed lid, and place in the oven on the lowest oven rack.
Dimensions: 11"Dia × 6"H
Suitability: Oven, microwave
Materials: Superstone natural stoneware
Care: Soak in warm water, scrape off food with a wire brush or pad
For best results, season the dish and lid before use with a coating of cooking oil.


Customer Reviews

There are no customer reviews yet on Amazon.ca
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 3.6 out of 5 stars  155 reviews
136 of 139 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars La Cloche Sept. 20 2005
By Alexanderplatz - Published on Amazon.com
I had wanted one of these baking dishes ever since I read about them in Carol Field's book THE ITALIAN BAKER. My wife and I received one as a wedding present and I have now baked bread in it multiple times. It does indeed make a difference in the texture of the crust. After years of experimenting I had never been able to achieve that especially crisp crust that you get from a bakery, until now. Another plus is that the dough's final rise inside the covered dish obviates the need for plastic wrap. I lately have purchased the rectangular "baguette" version of La Cloche at an outlet store, and have found it to be a more practical shape for day to day baking. The original bell-shaped La Cloche is great, however, for making large, round hearth loaves or a cluster or dinner rolls.
70 of 70 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Creates a Professional Baker's Oven in Your Kitchen Feb. 7 2011
By Sharon Beverly - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
You will definitely see improvement in your homemade breads when you use a cloche. Basically, it is an unglazed clay base and domed lid that create the effects of a baker's oven within your own oven. The high heat and steam in a professional oven are not found in a home oven but, with the cloche, the results are remarkably similar.

Contrary to many reviews, I was delighted and surprised to find that my La Cloche arrived in perfect condition. Packing it in thick cardboard and big plastic bubbles resolved the company's breakage problem.

La Cloche's Pros
* Excellent quality unglazed ceramic baking top and bottom
* Heavy enough to retain heat
* Performs as stated in the advertising
* Creates a hot and humid environment making bread rise higher
* Easy to maintain

La Cloche's Cons
* None

The following are some suggestions to improve your oven's environment using this product:
* Place a thin layer of coarsely ground corn meal on the interior base of the cloche. The will prevent the bread from sticking to the surface
* Use parchment paper instead of the corn meal, if desired
* Soak the top (only) of the cloche in water for 30 minutes prior to placing your bread dough in the oven. (Because the unglazed ceramic top will absorb some of the water, this will give you the benefits of a steam oven without the costs of a new one.)
* Put your dough on the base and place the water-soaked top over it.
* DO NOT PRE-HEAT your oven (Yes, read this correctly!). Turn the cold oven to 450° and set the timer for about 40-45 minutes for a 20-24 oz. loaf.
* After the 40-45 minutes, remove BOTH the top and bottom of the cloche set from the oven.
* Return the bread to the oven, placing it directly on the metal shelf. (Do not use a baking sheet.) The will allow you to bake artisanal breads with a crackling crust. The interior texture (crumb) will be moist and chewy.

I have used this method for: San Francisco Sourdough bread (see my review of San Francisco Sourdough Starter); whole wheat bread; artisanal white bread; cheese bread; herbed bread; and both seeded and unseeded rye breads. I brought a basket of breads to a Superbowl party and they were a big hit--so much so that, two families asked for instructions and will begin baking breads for themselves.
125 of 131 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I'm The Baker Dec 7 2005
By Purly Girly - Published on Amazon.com
I love to bake. I really love to bake bread. My specialty is sourdough. So now I have 3 strikes against me, that is, until I found La Cloche.

Although it can be used to cook meats, I personally only use it for bread. La Cloche turns your regular oven into a brick oven, and the quality of your bread will amaze you. It browns beautifully, has a crispy, chewy crust that seems to carmelize the sugars in the crust differently. There is no need to spray water or create steam in the oven, because the steam is created inside La Cloche by the bread itself. So actually bread making is more simple and safe because you are not spraying water into a 500 degree oven.

There are 2 shapes, a french bread style and round oven hearth style. I have both and pop them into the oven at the same time, so I am baking 2 loaves of bread at once, which is a little more economical.

Truly, I wish I had this from the beginning of my baking attempts. If you are a baker or love one, go ahead and spring for it. You will never regret this kitchen tool. All my other bread pans are now unused.
58 of 61 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great bread, but... March 15 2006
By M. K. Dominguez - Published on Amazon.com
Verified Purchase
I used La Cloche to make bread with, specifically San Francisco Sourdough, with SPECTACULAR results. The crust was crisp but chewey, and I could not imagine baking another loaf without it. But after I used it the first time, the bottom developed a crack. After a second use, the crack became so large that I will not use it again for fear it will break during cooking.

I called Sassafras Enterprises (800.537.4941), and for $8.00 to cover shipping/handling they are sending out a replacement bottom. Their customer service was outstanding, and I feel they build a quality product. I also purchased the rectangular version of La Cloche, and I have not had an issue. Perhaps our La Cloche was damaged during shipping. I would have rated it 5 stars otherwise.
90 of 105 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Guaranteed to Arrive Damaged March 22 2007
By William J. Cahalane - Published on Amazon.com
I ordered this item because of the rave reviews. Unfortunately, it is highly fragile and the manufacturer has done a TERRIBLE job of packaging the product, especially the bottom piece. My first order arrived with the bottom piece in a million pieces, as did the second, as did the third.

Amazon has been VERY good about refunding my money. However, until either the manufacturer or Amazon addresses the packaging issue, it's not worth your time ordering, as it will arrive damaged.

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