A Baker’s Blade is a cutting implement used to make decorative slashes in bread dough without pressing the dough down and deflating itIts looks bring to mind a small rubber spatula. It has a plastic handle, about 5 inches (12 1/2 cm) long. At the end of the handle is a broader metal blade, about 1 1/2 inches (4 cm) long. The sharp, curved edge of the blade is what will put off any ideas of using this as a spatula.
The curve in the blade allows precision-shaped cuts to be made. The purpose of making the cuts is to allow steam to escape in “designated places” from the loaf while cooking, so that irregular cracks don’t form in the top of the loaf. In effect, by providing the cracks in advance, you are following the old “get in front of it and make it look like a parade” principle. The process of slashing it is called “docking” the loaf.
Though not all Baker’s Blades allow the actual blade parts to be replaced, many do. You detach the blade from the handle, and replace it with what looks like a stainless steel razor blade. To put a new blade in, you press the blade slightly at each end to curve it, then insert it into the blade-holder on the handle, then release the blade slowly.
Most come with a protective cover that goes on the blade in storage.
Exacto knife, or a very sharp knife with a thin blade.
A Baker’s Blade is also called by its French name, “lame”, which is pronounced “lahm.”