I have to apologize to you in advance: I'm sorry I haven't shared this tip for perfectly sliced homemade bread before now. It is so easy and results in such nice cuts that I should have written this tip years ago. Better late than never, though, so I'm mending my non-sharing ways and fully disclosing my secret today.
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For many years, this is how I sliced my homemade bread - with a serrated bread knife. I know what you're thinking looking at this photo - what's the big deal? Looks good to me! And it is fine - it's just not the best. The crumb is rough, an edge is torn, and I struggled to get evenly sliced pieces.
Then I helped in the kitchen at my kid's summer camp one year and they used this to cut all their bread:
And not just any bread, but warm, crusty bread - the kind that usually collapses into a smooshed mess if you try to cut it warm. Can I just say revelation? Our bread world was transformed. Well, at least the cutting part.
I pulled out my cheap, basic electric knife that I used once or twice a year (and that I actually bought originally to cut foam with, ha!) and tried it. Yes, it made cutting crusty artisan bread a breeze - warm or cool - and created slices of sandwich bread like this:
Smooth crumb and perfect edges, and an electric knife goes a long way to helping me cut even slices (though a bread slicing guide should probably be on my wish-list). Just in case you think I'm overstating my case for perfection, here are the slices side by side:
Ahh, now you see it, don't you? Electric knife + homemade bread = perfect slices.
Now go pull out your electric knife (or put it on your wish list - the cheapest one is fine), make some easy bread and give it a try. I don't think you'll go back to a plain serrated knife, except when you're too lazy to plug in the electric knife. Not that I ever am lazy like that.
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