proofing baskets

When we were in Pennsylvania for our Christmas family gathering, I noticed that my cousin Zoe was proofing her bread dough in gorgeous, oblong, homemade baskets. I raved, of course, and then Zoe promptly went to her pantry, plucked a proofing basket from the shelf, and said, “Here, take this. It’s an extra.” 

And then I said, if she was going to make more, I’d like to buy another one so I’d have a pair. Of course, she said. But you’ll have to wait until I get more clothesline rope. (Because that’s what she uses to make the baskets, and she only gets it from thrift stores.)

Five long months passed and then, when we hosted the family gathering this summer, she brought me my basket, plus two more—sturdy round ones—and she wouldn’t take any money! It was a hostess gift, she said.

Well, tickle me pink.

Both kinds of baskets, the oblong and the round ones, work beautifully, but I’m particularly partial to the long ovals which fit more easily into the fridge and sit so nice and pretty on the baking stone. The baskets are pliable, so when dumping the dough onto the baking sheet, they can be semi-inverted.

All the baskets are easy to take care of. Before using, just shake out any excess flour and crumbs and then dust heavily with fresh flour. After using, tap out the excess flour and squirrel them away in the cupboard. That’s it!

When I began this post, I planned to link to Zoe’s Etsy page so that y’all could get yourselves some Zoe Baskets. But alas, alack, Zoe’s supply of thriftstore clothesline has dwindled and she’s no longer making the baskets. Which makes this whole post is kind of anticlimactic. My apologies.

But! There are options! You can either purchase a proofing basket here or you could turn Zoe-esque and make your own. Either way, do pop into her shop and look around. I strongly suggest you snatch up some of her killer hot pads on your way out.

This same time, years previous: the quotidian (7.25.16), we’re back!, the boy and the tooth, chocolate mint ice cream cone cake, roasted corn with lime and feta, spicy Indian potatoes, blackberry cobbler.


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