Lemon Blueberry loaf

Discussion in 'Cakes' started by Lee_C, Apr 21, 2019.

  1. Lee_C

    Lee_C Well-Known Member

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    Just made this for the first time today. absolutely lush! :)I followed Joy Of Baking recipe, including her thin glaze brushed on top which seeps into the cake and keeps it moist via holes I made. But I also added an icing sugar glaze.

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    Lee_C, Apr 21, 2019
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  2. Lee_C

    Norcalbaker59 Well-Known Member

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    Looks yummy. We must be on the same wavelength, I baked gluten free blueberry muffins this morning:p
     
    Norcalbaker59, Apr 22, 2019
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  3. Lee_C

    Lee_C Well-Known Member

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    Hah, yes we must be. Ooh yeah, Blueberry Muffins are on my list to make :)

    I made a baking belt and it seemed to work really well as there's no crusty sides at all.

    But there was a problem with the overall bake. It's meant to be baked at 180c for about an hour or so. However as, we discussed, a lower temperature would be better so I baked it at just over 160c. After 50 minutes, the top looked golden brown, basically it was done and a skewer came out clean. That's when I removed it from the oven.

    But I later noticed the bottom looked and felt underdone, it was pale and way too soft and moist, and there are parts of the inside with slightly raw batter. It seems I needed to bake it for longer, maybe another 15 to 20 minutes.

    But I'm thinking, then the top would have probably started to get too dark. And since the skewer came out clean in two places I tested, I don't know how I was meant to know it wasn't actually completely cooked through. For the most part it was cooked and delicious. But next time I'll make sure to leave it for longer or slightly increase the temperature.

    Here's pics of my baking belt and going into the oven.

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    Last edited: Apr 22, 2019
    Lee_C, Apr 22, 2019
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  4. Lee_C

    Norcalbaker59 Well-Known Member

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    @Lee_C, Welcome to quick breads—a seemingly baked quick bread that turns out to be under baked inside is the number problem with quick breads. Quick breads are notorious for being under baked.

    The uneven baking is due to the deep depth of the pan and high moisture and sugar content of the batter.

    I’d recommend you continue to bake at 160°C and use baking strip. If you increase the oven temperature the loaf will be nearly burnt on top. The lower oven temperature gives you better control of overall baking.

    Don’t line the pan with baking paper. Given the depth of the batter, direct exposure to metal will help the bottom bake more thoroughly. It’s the top that you want to insulate better, not the bottom.

    To insulate the top, loosely tent the loaf pan with aluminum foil for the last 15 or 20 minutes of baking.

    You could also lower the oven rack one rung down. Rack in the middle of the oven chamber is the standard position for baking. But when using a tall pan, the exposed batter is now closer to the top of the oven chamber. The oven chamber is generally warmer at the top (heat rises) and bottom (heating element is usually in the oven floor). So lowering the rack just slightly brings the exposed batter toward the slightly cooler part of the oven and the bottom closer to the heating element.

    Blueberries contain an extraordinary amount of water. As they burst in baking and release that water. So you could also try reducing the amount of blueberries as a way to reduce water without reformulated the recipe.
     
    Norcalbaker59, Apr 22, 2019
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  5. Lee_C

    Lee_C Well-Known Member

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    Norcalbaker, great advice. Thanks for explaining the reasons why quick breads can have uneven baking.

    I'm thinking that it might be trickier releasing it from the pan without baking paper handles to lift it out. But as long as the pan is well greased with butter, and I've left it to fully cool to stop it falling apart, should it pretty much slide out if I tip the tin onto its side?


    'To insulate the top, loosely tent the loaf pan with aluminum foil for the last 15 or 20 minutes of baking.'

    Good idea! Yes, that had occurred to me. So by last 15 or 20 minutes, I take it you mean add that onto the 50 minutes. But how can I guarantee it'll be done even after say an hour and 10, considering the skewer came out clean when it was underdone? Still, I'd be very surprised if it wasn't fully baked by then.

    I like your suggestion of lowering the rack. It makes sense to put the bottom of the tin nearer to the main heat and get the lowest part of the batter cooked while simultaneously preventing the top from getting overbaked due to heat rising.

    Finally, I'm delighted how easy it was to make a baking belt! It definitely worked well. However, perhaps it worked too well in this instance? While we're looking to avoid crustiness on sides of cakes, I'm wondering if this recipe should have a crust? Because other recipes I've watched all have dark sides, whereas mine are completely crustless.
     
    Lee_C, Apr 22, 2019
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  6. Lee_C

    Norcalbaker59 Well-Known Member

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    Regarding tenting the loaf..,If the estimated baking time is 60 minutes, check the loaf 40 minutes into the bake. If it has risen and is light golden brown, then tent it with foil. You want to tent when the loaf is set, and just lightly brown. Too soon and the steam won’t escape and it could undermine the structure.


    Regarding using the baking strip... certainly you can bake it without the baking strip.


    But given you have a dark metal tin and her recipe is essentially a cake recipe* I would continue to use it to avoid a very dry loaf.


    Cake and quick breads contain the same ingredients. What sets them apart is mixing method and percentage of fat. The traditional mixing method for a quick bread is the muffin mixing or the biscuit mixing method. She uses the creaming method.


    Understandable because she has a very high flour to butter ratio at 58%. The ratio for a butter cake is 45% fat to flour. The ratio for a quick bread is traditionally 33%. Fat coats the flour inhibiting gluten development. The soft crumb in this recipe is due more to the high fat.


    Her quick bread recipe will always bake up like a cake because it is cake both in ingredient ratios and mixing method.

    I’m glad the baking strips prove to be easy to make and useful. I swear by them.

    Regarding keeping the loaf from sticking... make and use baker’s grease. I swear by the stuff. It’s simple to make. Just mix equal parts by weight of vegetable oil, solid shortening, and flour. Just mix it all together and brush it on your pan. Even the most intricate designs in Bundt pans will release a cake if baker’s grease is used. See pics below


    *assuming this was the recipe you used


    https://m.joyofbaking.com/quickbreads/LemonBlueberryBread.html



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    With baker’s grease even the razor sharp lines release the cake batter.
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    Norcalbaker59, Apr 22, 2019
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  7. Lee_C

    Lee_C Well-Known Member

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    Wow, those mini bundt cakes look amazing, perfect clean lines.
    Thanks for the info. Yes, I used that recipe you linked.

    I'll make up some baker's grease. Does it matter if I use lard, margarine or Trex for the solid shortening?
     
    Lee_C, Apr 23, 2019
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  8. Lee_C

    Norcalbaker59 Well-Known Member

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    Trex would be my choice. It’s pure white vegetable shortening, so it would be perfect. In the US the equivalent is a brand called Crisco, which is what I use.

    I’ve never used lard or margarine to make baker’s grease, but I can’t think of a reason why they wouldn’t work.

    Oh forgot to mention, since baker’s grease already has flour in it, The pan does not need to be dusted with flour after greasing it. I find it easiest to apply it with a pastry brush, especially with a decorative pan that has a lot of nooks and crannies.
     
    Norcalbaker59, Apr 23, 2019
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  9. Lee_C

    Lee_C Well-Known Member

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    Thanks. Yeah, I was researching it and had noticed that Crisco is the popular US shortening. I've got a couple of different pastry brushes, and I'll buy some Trex. :)
     
    Lee_C, Apr 23, 2019
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  10. Lee_C

    Lee_C Well-Known Member

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    I'm making something else now and I made up some baker's grease. I used 1/4 cup/60ml equal parts veg oil, Trex and plain flour. Smells like onions. :p There's enough to brush into several more tins so I've stored it in the fridge, apparently it can last several months.
     

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    Lee_C, Apr 24, 2019
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  11. Lee_C

    Norcalbaker59 Well-Known Member

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    Yes I forgot to mention you can store it. Interesting it smells like onion. I’ve never noticed an odor to it.
     
    Norcalbaker59, Apr 24, 2019
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  12. Lee_C

    Lee_C Well-Known Member

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    But wow, it works great. After baking a walnut loaf, I tipped the tin on it's side and it slid out effortlessly, so thanks for the great tip! :)
     
    Lee_C, Apr 24, 2019
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