I was afraid to make bread up until a few months ago, now I make it at least once a week using this incredibly easy no-knead method. If you can stir, you can make this bread. Here's the finished product, served with olive oil, our heirloom tomatoes, greenhouse cucumbers, genovese basil, my home made goat cheese drizzled with a mustard vinegarette.
Let's get started... The ingredients are easy:
4 cups of warm (105-115 degrees F) water
7 cups of all purpose flour
1 package of yeast
1/4 cup sugar
1 t. salt
Add the sugar and salt to your warm water. Stir the yeast into this warm water mixture then let it sit for about 5 minutes. It will become a little foamy on top, like this:
Stir the yeast mixture into 4 cups of the flour. Stir in the final 3 cups of flour one at a time.
Cover and let it sit for 2 hours at room temperature. I use my Tupperware cake taker upside down to make this dough. You can also use a big bowl covered with aluminum foil. After 2 hours, the dough has risen. Don't punch it down, just pop it in the fridge for at least 3 hours or overnight. Here's what it looks like risen:
OK, at least 3 hours later - you're ready to bake it. See how the dough fell while in the fridge? It's OK, don't punch it down or anything. Dust a pizza stone with corn meal.
This amount of dough will make four loaves. I can get two onto my pizza stone at once. Scoop out 1/4 of the dough at a time. I use a plastic pastry scraper to scoop the dough out. Just eyeball it, no need to measure. Easy peasy.
Using floured hands, stretch your dough into a loaf shape and place it on the cornmeal - dusted pizza stone. Since I bake two at a time, I just cover the remaining dough and put it back in the fridge to bake another day. I've waited 5 days between bakings, and the second batch turned out as good as the first.
Let the dough sit on the pizza stone at room temp. for 30 minutes. After 30 minutes, preheat your oven to 450 degrees F. As soon as the oven comes up to this temperature, drop it to 350 degrees then
put your dough in the oven. It will be done in 55 minutes. Crusty on the outside and soft on the inside. To. Die. For.
This bread freezes beautifully. Take it out frozen and pop it in a 400 degree oven for 20 minutes and it tastes fresh baked.
You can do this, you know you want to! Come bake with me. It's delicious and your friends will be super
impressed. It's what's for dinner!