I’ve been lurking on Rose’s blog and here at the forums, and have recently run into a problem that I’m sure our combined brain-power/cooking prowess can solve.
We’ve just moved into an older apartment with a gas oven, which is pretty depressing for me. I have never had any problems with pie and tart crusts until now. Of course, when I was a pastry chef, I had electric ovens, and every other apartment we’ve lived in had electric too. In this old gas oven, the bottom crusts simply refuse to get crisp and golden brown - the sides and tops of my pies and tarts are as gorgeous as ever, but the bottoms are only pale golden, limp and floury-tasting.
The first casualty was an apple pie which was perfect in every way except for the soggy bottom. This was baked just on the rack, in the middle-upper position.
Then yesterday, I tried baking a sour cherry clafouti tart atop a upturned cast iron skillet. The oven (with skillet) had been preheated at 220C for a full hour, my theory being that the ripping hot cast iron would help to crisp the bottom. But alas, that didn’t work too.
Does anyone have experience with gas ovens, or ideas on how to fix this? I’d love to be able to turn out some pies and tarts, especially as winter begins to set in here in Melbourne. I would be most grateful for any insight anyone can cast on this problem.
Christine in Melbourne