How to make it

  • If using active dry yeast, proof the yeast with 2 tablespoon water (105-115 degrees) for 5-10 minutes and then add to the rest of the ingredients. Otherwise, combine flour, yeast and salt in a large bowl. Add 1 5/8 cups water, and stir until blended; dough will be shaggy and sticky. Cover bowl with plastic wrap. Let dough rest at least 12 hours, preferably about 18, at warm room temperature, about 70 degrees.
  • Dough is ready when its surface is dotted with bubbles. Lightly flour parchment paper and place dough on it; sprinkle it with a little more flour and fold it over on itself once or twice. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and let rest about 15 minutes.
  • Generously coat a cotton towel (not terry cloth) with flour, wheat bran or cornmeal. Dump dough onto towel (using a bench scraper to help, if necessary). Using just enough flour to keep dough from sticking to work surface or to your fingers, gently and quickly shape dough into a ball by pulling the sides up to the top. Quickly roll the dough over so it is resting seam-side down on the towel and dust with more flour, bran or cornmeal. Cover with another dry cotton towel and let rise for about 2 hours. When it is ready, dough will be more than double in size and will not readily spring back when poked with a finger.
  • At least a half-hour before dough is ready, heat oven to 450 degrees. Put a 6- to 8-quart heavy covered pot (cast iron, enamel, Pyrex or ceramic) in oven as it heats. If the lid has a handle, remove it. When dough is ready, carefully remove pot from oven. Slide your hand under towel and turn dough over into pot, seam side up; it may look like a mess, but that is O.K. Shake pan once or twice if dough is unevenly distributed; it will straighten out as it bakes. Cover with lid and bake 30 minutes, then remove lid and bake another 15 to 30 minutes, until loaf is beautifully browned. Cool on a rack.
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Reviews & Comments 3

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    " It was excellent "
    tinadunlap ate it and said...
    the best and easiest bread i've ever eaten. 5 stars seem to little. many thanks tina d
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    " It was excellent "
    chezzane ate it and said...
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  • oescrazy1 11 years ago
    I will definitely make this as soon as the weather cools down. I love artisan breads. Thanks for posting it.
    Was this review helpful? Yes Flag

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