Artisan Bread

Ingredients: 3 cups lukewarm water 1 1/2 tbsp granulated yeast (1 1/2 packets) 1 1/2 tbsp kosher or other salt 6 1/2 cups unbleached flour This is enough for 4 1 lb loaves – you can easily modify amount

Directions:

  • Add yeast & salt to water in large container w/lid
  • Mix flour all at once – mix until uniform – don’t knead
  • Cover with lid
  • Let rise for 2 hours
  • At this point you can refridgerate the dough until you’re ready to bake, at which point:
  • Scoop out enough for a loaf, and shape/stretch the dough into a round loaf – you may need a little flour on your hands to prevent it from sticking – just keep tucking the dough ball towards the bottom until you have a nice, round ball – the bottom may have a number of “overlaps” – don’t worry. Return remaining dough to refridgerator.
  • Place ball on pizza peel which has been sprinkled with corn meal. Allow it to rest for 40 minutes.
  • You may sprinkle flour on the top of the ball, and lightly score the top in whatever pattern floats your boat
  • Pre-heat oven to 450 with a baking stone on middle rack and empty broiler pan on lower rack
  • After dough has rested 40 minutes, slide off pizza peel onto baking stone. Quickly add 1 cup hot water to bottom broiler pan.
  • Bake for 30 minutes.
  • Remove bread from oven and allow to cool before serving.

Note: Be careful not to spill water on stone when adding to broiler pan – it can [from experience] break the stone. You can vary the recipe by substituting some of the unbleached white flour with rye flour, whole wheat flour, oatmeal, etc. Subsequent loaves (made from refridgerated dough) will be a little “denser” the the first loaf, but is quick and easy to make.

Source: Artesan Bread in Five Minutes a Day; Jeff Hertzberg and Zoe Francois (I would recommend getting this book – it has a number of recipes for a variety of breads. All fast and easy)

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