SCORING TOOLS FOR SOURDOUGH
An artist doesn’t use one paintbrush,
so why should bakers only use one tool to score their bread?
Today I’m sharing all of the different scoring tools I use and how/when I decide to use each tool.
I have loved experimenting with all of the different tools, and now as I am scoring, and have a design in mind, I know which tool to use and for what kind of affect I want on the final bake.
Bread lame: I use this to create my main score across the bread to achieve an “ear” on my loaf. The arch on the blade, cuts the dough while lifting it up to some extent, allowing it to rise and flap up creating the ear that everyone aims for.
X-acto knife: This was my first tool of choice, if you can only have one tool I’d choose this. X-acto knives are good for straight, deep cuts, and if you want a big separation in your bake as well.
-I specifically like using this for my Aztec designs. My “sunbeam” design was scored with just this and allows you to get straight lines because you have a sharp point on the end that cuts deep into the dough. k
-You can also use the blade upside down to “sketch” out your design without piercing the skin of the dough.
-And If you don’t own a classic bread lame, you can score the dough directly at first with this knife just by holding it vertically and slicing into the bread, then afterwards, hold it at an angle and using the blade to cut horizontally separating the cut to create a “flap” on your dough to then create an “ear” on your loaf in the final bake.
Razor Blade: I use this for shallow/detailed cuts. In my videos you can either see me holding the razor blade itself, or I have started using Bread Llamas scoring tool. I’ve also seen Wire Monkey’s tool which is similar. By using a razor blade like this, you can get intricate, thin cuts that when baking, open up to be small, detailed cuts. When I want the small leaf cuts or the infamous “wheat” design, I use this. It allows you to not cut super deep and when it bakes, the cuts bake up to be intricate, perfect leaf designs (if that’s what you’re choosing to do with it). And because the blade is so thin, it allows you to bend the blade easily for curved designs as well.
Scissors: I use scissors at the very end of my scoring if I want my corners to flap open or I cut it deep to potentially have it poke out and lift up while it bakes. This makes sure some of the dough is separated to ensure lifting up when it bakes.
I have loved experimenting with all of the different tools, and now as I am scoring, and have a design in mind, I know which tool to use and for what kind of affect I want on the final bake. Here's a few examples showing which tool I used for each design.