Friday, April 16, 2010

The Easiest Bread Ever!

So Easy Rustic Bread
8 servings

All you need -

3 cups flour
1/4 teaspoon yeast
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups lukewarm water

Combine flour, yeast and salt in a large bowl. 
Add water and stir until combined.  
Cover with saran wrap and let set on the counter for 12-18 hours. 
(I do this right before I head to bed the night before I plan to have the bread for supper.)

Wet hands and move dough to a lightly floured piece of parchment paper.  
Knead a few times.  
Don't worry about how it looks, 
the messier it looks the more "rustic" it will be! ;-)  
Cover dough with saran wrap.  

Meanwhile preheat the oven to 450°.  
When the oven reaches 450° place pot* with lid on it in the oven for 30 minutes. 
After 30 minutes, carefully remove the preheated pot, take off the lid, 
and, using the edges of the parchment paper, carefully lower the dough into the pot.  
Cook dough in covered pot at 450° for 30 minutes. 
Uncover and cook an additional 15 minutes.  
Remove the pot from the oven and, using the edges of the parchment paper, 
lift the bread out of the pot.  

Cool on wire rack. 
When cool enough to handle, slice, serve warm with butter and enjoy!

*Make sure the pot you use is oven safe. Most cast iron, ceramic, pyrex, stainless steel or enamel pots will work. Be sure to check that the lid you use is oven safe as well! I used my calphalon stock pot and it worked just fine. (The calphalon website said that the pot was oven safe up to 700° and the lid up to 450°.)  I have also used my red enamel pot.  (It's the HEB brand knock-off of the pricey le creuset signature cast iron dutch oven.)

This truly was the easiest bread I've ever made! It has a high water content and makes the texture of the bread different than most yeast breads, but my family really enjoyed the change. It had such a crisp, crunchy crust. I think I will be making it often!

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