Friday, June 10, 2011

the $1 loaf of bread a 6 year old could make

all i can say is WOW.  forget buying ok store bought bread or expensive artisan loafs.  those days are over! this easy and cheap recipe yields an amazingly delicious end result with a crusty outside and soft, chewy center.

i've read rave reviews of sullivan street bakery's no-knead rustic bread recipe but have yet to give it a whirl.  i have my grandmother's cast iron pot which was the perfect vessel to bake this brown beauty in.  since it's been awhile since i last used it, i had to season the pot first.  MAKE THIS!

3 c. flour
1/4 t. yeast
1 1/4 t. salt
1 1/2 c. H20

in a large bowl, combine flour, yeast and salt.  mix together with your hand.
add 1 c. water, mix with hand until combined.
cover with serran wrap and let sit in a warm spot (70* is ideal) for 12-24hrs.

dough is ready when you many small bubble on surface.
dump it on a floured surface.  it will have a stringy texture.
lightly pat and fold dough a couple of times onto itself. cover with serran wrap and let rest another 15 min.

generously coat a cotton towel (not terry cloth) with flour, wheat bran or cornmeal. (i used a combo of cornmeal and flour).
put dough seam side down on towel and dust with more flour, bran or cornmeal.
fold towel around doughball and let rise for 2 hrs.
dough will be more than double it's size when ready and not readily spring back when poked with a finger.

at least 1/2 hr before dough is ready, heat oven to 450*.
put a 6-8 qt heavy covered pot (cast iron/enamel/Pyrex or ceramic) in oven as it heats.
when dough is ready, remove hot pot from oven and place dough inside...seam side up.
cover with lid and bake 30 min, then remove lid and bake another 15-30 min until loaf is brown.
when bread is tapped with fingers and sounds hollow, it is done.
cool on a rack and EAT!!!

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