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Scoring My Sourdough Boule

Scoring My Sourdough Boule

sourdough bread boule

I baked a loaf of sourdough today, and guess what? I tried scoring my sourdough boule in a new way! Yes, I’m becoming a little more comfortable with sourdough to the point that I challenged myself to a new score.

Scoring the bread—in other words, slashing the top—is not just for decorative purposes. The scoring helps control the way the bread expands as it bakes. Up until this loaf, I’ve stuck with a very simple score on my bread. Just a cross in the middle that runs a bit long. The first time I tried to score bread, I used a sharp knife. But I realized quickly that it wasn’t sharp enough, so my cuts weren’t smooth and not deep enough. Also, the bread was sticking to the knife as I tried to run it through. Fail.

The second time, I tried a trick I had read about on the Internet. Spray your knife with Pam or rub a little oil on the blade in order to slice without sticking. Um, that didn’t work for me. But it could’ve been my dough wasn’t quite right, which made it stick to the knife even with the blade covered in oil. (Yeah, it was probably my dough, as it was just my second loaf, and I was still figure out rising temperatures.)

So, I bought a banneton set that came with a real bread lame! (Link below! 👇) I decided if I was going to do it right, I needed to get the right tool. (By the way, as an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.)

And guess what? It made a difference! Well, that and I had also figured out a few more things that I needed to correct with my third and fourth loaves.

I found this great video that covers different scoring techniques for sourdough bread:

The “Foodgeek” shows off some very simple designs, as well as some pretty intricate scoring later in the video. I’m hoping to one day be able to do the beautiful leaf designs on a boule! It’s so gorgeous.

After feeling pretty good about doing the simple cross on my first sourdough loaves, I felt like this was the time to try something a little different. A little more complicated. So I attempted to do the diamond pattern! And it didn’t turn out bad.

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Now, my diamonds look more like squares because I didn’t angle it quite right. But I’m so happy with the results of my scoring. The bread lame helped out a great deal. I was able to run the blade through the bread quickly without much trouble.

I’m going to continue with this pattern for the next few boules until I can get the diamond shapes just right. But in the meantime, I’m giving myself a pat on the back for trying something new with my boule. And now I think it’s time for a slice!

If you’re making sourdough these days, I’d love to connect and learn from you. Feel free to drop me a line using this form, or shoot me a DM on Instagram at @yumdayco!

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