Author Topic: Sliced (Homemade) Bread  (Read 10380 times)

NumberCruncher

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Sliced (Homemade) Bread
« on: April 15, 2014, 11:58:13 AM »
Okay, so I love me some homemade bread, but I also love me some sandwiches from time to time.

Are there any simple hacks for cutting consistent, thin slices of bread? We use a serrated knife and inevitably end up with very awkward slices. We can get some amount of consistency with thicker slices, but who wants a sandwich that's 90% bread?

nereo

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Re: Sliced (Homemade) Bread
« Reply #1 on: April 15, 2014, 12:04:07 PM »
I'll venture a guess that your serrated knife has lost its edge.  Most sure-fire sign that you've got a dull blade is when you can't cut thin slices from soft things without smushing them. 

MarcherLady

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Re: Sliced (Homemade) Bread
« Reply #2 on: April 15, 2014, 12:07:24 PM »
I used to use an electric (meat) carving knife to cut home made bread. Probably not worth buying one, but if you have one tucked away somewhere they help to get consistently thin slices.  +1 to Serpents tooth, make sure the bread is cool, if you can wait that long.

zataks

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Re: Sliced (Homemade) Bread
« Reply #3 on: April 15, 2014, 12:09:32 PM »
Especially important when slicing homemade bread is the edge on the knife and the way it is used.  I baked two loaves last night that I was able to cut very thin just to snack on. 

When slicing, apply basically no pressure; just use the weight of the knife and move it back and forth.  Even a dull serrated knife will slice through bread decently this way.

Russ

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Re: Sliced (Homemade) Bread
« Reply #4 on: April 15, 2014, 12:14:14 PM »
Especially important when slicing homemade bread is the edge on the knife and the way it is used.  I baked two loaves last night that I was able to cut very thin just to snack on. 

When slicing, apply basically no pressure; just use the weight of the knife and move it back and forth.  Even a dull serrated knife will slice through bread decently this way.

+1

also don't make your bread too dry

also also maybe try buns or sub-style loaves?

Zikoris

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Re: Sliced (Homemade) Bread
« Reply #5 on: April 15, 2014, 12:29:51 PM »
Make sure it's completely cool (cold is even better), and use a bread knife. I think I paid about $5 for my bread knife from a restaurant supply store three years ago, and it's served me well.


dragoncar

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Re: Sliced (Homemade) Bread
« Reply #7 on: April 15, 2014, 12:39:25 PM »
Wow, I never had this problem.  I don't mind thick slices, though.  I suppose you may need a better/sharper knife as above.  If you have a good but dull serrated bread knife, there are ways you can sharpen them at home (requires purchasing a sharpening kit but might be worth the cost if you bake and slice a lot of bread). 


James

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Re: Sliced (Homemade) Bread
« Reply #8 on: April 15, 2014, 12:47:01 PM »
When teaching my kids to slice bread, I start with them on a stool so they can look down directly over the loaf. That way you can see both sides of the bread and guide the knife to a straight down cut. Like others have said, make sure not to push, let the serrations do the work. If you make a mistake, don't try and match the crooked cut, just cut one thicker slice that is straight down to start off with a good side again.


An electric knife does work well if you have one, but don't buy one if you don't. Same rules applies, get yourself directly over the bread in order to make a nice straight cut.

Jamesqf

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Re: Sliced (Homemade) Bread
« Reply #9 on: April 15, 2014, 12:55:56 PM »
Maybe this is out-of-the-box (or loaf?) thinking, but I've gotten to where I much prefer to make French/Italian style long but not very tall loaves (baked on a flat sheet rather than in a pan), and slice horizontally for a sandwich.

NumberCruncher

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Re: Sliced (Homemade) Bread
« Reply #10 on: April 15, 2014, 01:08:00 PM »
We use a Ginsu knife (it was a gift) that's fairly sharp - I'll check again at home, but I think it's really a matter of technique here. The slices just come out uneven by a certain amount (and is less noticeable in thicker slices). For thinner slices, if it starts out at <2cm, if I'm off by 1 cm, it is quite noticeable!


When teaching my kids to slice bread, I start with them on a stool so they can look down directly over the loaf. That way you can see both sides of the bread and guide the knife to a straight down cut. Like others have said, make sure not to push, let the serrations do the work. If you make a mistake, don't try and match the crooked cut, just cut one thicker slice that is straight down to start off with a good side again.


An electric knife does work well if you have one, but don't buy one if you don't. Same rules applies, get yourself directly over the bread in order to make a nice straight cut.

Okay, now I feel like a child /adultFail

Alright, back to basics bread cutting it is! I'll make an effort to look up from above and take it slow and see if I can get any decent sandwich bread out of it. We're usually using the bread maker, so the loaves are taller too (and the middles are unusable as sandwich bread anyway), adding some degree of difficulty.

For those who have never had this problem...how thick or thin are your slices?

dragoncar

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Re: Sliced (Homemade) Bread
« Reply #11 on: April 15, 2014, 01:24:07 PM »
We use a Ginsu knife (it was a gift) that's fairly sharp - I'll check again at home, but I think it's really a matter of technique here. The slices just come out uneven by a certain amount (and is less noticeable in thicker slices). For thinner slices, if it starts out at <2cm, if I'm off by 1 cm, it is quite noticeable!


When teaching my kids to slice bread, I start with them on a stool so they can look down directly over the loaf. That way you can see both sides of the bread and guide the knife to a straight down cut. Like others have said, make sure not to push, let the serrations do the work. If you make a mistake, don't try and match the crooked cut, just cut one thicker slice that is straight down to start off with a good side again.


An electric knife does work well if you have one, but don't buy one if you don't. Same rules applies, get yourself directly over the bread in order to make a nice straight cut.

Okay, now I feel like a child /adultFail

Alright, back to basics bread cutting it is! I'll make an effort to look up from above and take it slow and see if I can get any decent sandwich bread out of it. We're usually using the bread maker, so the loaves are taller too (and the middles are unusable as sandwich bread anyway), adding some degree of difficulty.

For those who have never had this problem...how thick or thin are your slices?

So is it a bread knife?  People need to know!  I make my slices a little thicker than Wonderbread.

mlipps

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Re: Sliced (Homemade) Bread
« Reply #12 on: April 15, 2014, 02:43:08 PM »
I too used to suck at cutting break, until I received this for Christmas:

http://www.amazon.com/Out-Woods-Oregon-Bread-Slicer/dp/B001DSP81E/ref=sr_1_12?ie=UTF8&qid=1397594543&sr=8-12&keywords=bread+slicer

But, I'm not sure if works better because it's wonderfully sharp or because it's easier to use, or both.

NumberCruncher

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Re: Sliced (Homemade) Bread
« Reply #13 on: April 15, 2014, 02:58:53 PM »
So is it a bread knife?  People need to know! 

Haha, I think this is my knife: http://www.amazon.com/Ginsu-Essential-Series-Original-Slicer/dp/B000MQIPBS/ref=cm_cr_pr_product_top

It supposedly never needs sharpening and has a lifetime warranty.

Not a "bread knife" specifically, but it seems up to the job...actually, now that I'm reading reviews I see this:

Quote
My biggest complaint is that when slicing foods it tends to drift to the right at the bottom of the stroke, no matter how you hold it or try to correct for it. I end up with slices that look like wedges, skinny at the top fat at the bottom. My previous knife which looked almost exactly like a ginsu without the riveted handle, did not slice like that! I have since replaced it with a quality knife that meets my expectstions. This thing has been relegated to the junk drawer.

so maybe it is the knife?

Stay tuned for the next installment of "Seriously, You're an Adult and You Can't Slice in a Straight Line?"

EMP

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Re: Sliced (Homemade) Bread
« Reply #14 on: April 15, 2014, 03:31:29 PM »
I'm hoping someone shares an awesome recipe for homemade sandwich style bread.  Mine always turns out too heavy and crumbly. 

Zikoris

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Re: Sliced (Homemade) Bread
« Reply #15 on: April 15, 2014, 05:08:40 PM »
Here's my recipe!

2/3 c soy milk
1 tbsp sugar
1 tbsp margarine
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp yeast
220g flour

I use a bread machine to mix, knead and rise the dough. Then I transfer it into a greased bread pan, cover it, let it rise a second time for an hour. Then my boyfriend throws it in the oven for about 15-20 minutes at 400. Done!

Thegoblinchief

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Re: Sliced (Homemade) Bread
« Reply #16 on: April 15, 2014, 05:59:28 PM »
It can be your recipe as well. I had a hard time getting a "tight" crumb using a bread machine.

I've really come to love this recipe:

http://food52.com/recipes/23747-no-knead-sandwich-bread

I use 1/2 bread flour and 1/2 whole wheat. I make 3-4 batches (6-8 loaves) a week for my hungry family. It slices really well down to approximately store bread thickness, though I usually slice it thicker.

Heart of Tin

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Re: Sliced (Homemade) Bread
« Reply #17 on: April 15, 2014, 06:05:05 PM »
This might sound silly, but when I was new to making sandwich bread I fixed my large, uneven slice problem by placing a ruler next to the bottom of the loaf, and cutting towards the 1/2" mark looking down from directly above. Now I can do even 3/8" slices freehanded, but the ruler helped me perfect the technique.

GuitarStv

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Re: Sliced (Homemade) Bread
« Reply #18 on: April 16, 2014, 06:34:24 AM »
The key to slicing bread properly is NEVER EVER PUSH DOWN.  The serrations will cut into the bread as you move the knife back and forth.  If you push down you will get terrible skooshed and uneven slices of bread.  If your bread knife won't slice into bread properly by moving it back and forth, you need to sharpen/replace the knife.

NV Teacher

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Re: Sliced (Homemade) Bread
« Reply #19 on: April 16, 2014, 08:01:48 AM »
You might try freezing it.  I've found that bread that has been frozen then thawed has a slightly different slicing texture.  It's hard to explain but it's like it has more body and I've found that it's easier to get thin slices.

tcklord

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Re: Sliced (Homemade) Bread
« Reply #20 on: April 16, 2014, 08:23:19 AM »
I know it looks really cheap but the Deli Pro works really well for bread from my bread machine. It has a guide that you can set to whatever thickness you want to get uniform slices. It's also pretty cheap, I have used mine for the last year or so, always throw it in the dishwasher etc and it still works great. Deli-Pro Slicing Knife by Deli Pro http://www.amazon.com/dp/B000286Q62/ref=cm_sw_r_udp_awd_WePttb0SRYR3Y

TrMama

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Re: Sliced (Homemade) Bread
« Reply #21 on: April 16, 2014, 09:50:30 AM »
Skip the gadgets. All you need is practice.

This answer applies to most things in life. Carry on.

Thegoblinchief

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Re: Sliced (Homemade) Bread
« Reply #22 on: April 16, 2014, 06:24:06 PM »
Skip the gadgets. All you need is practice.

This answer applies to most things in life. Carry on.

+INFINITY