3/03/2009

Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day - first loaf

Remember my post *here* about my newest endeavor of bread baking? I baked my first loaf out of that dough today...The dough is supposed to make 4 loaves of bread. I broke off one "grapefruit sized" chunk and shaped it....it was super small after resting - next time I'll let it rest for much longer out of the fridge and see if that makes a difference! That's the only thing that disappointed me...the texture, crust and taste of this bread is very good! I'll be making this again, obviously, since the dough remains in the fridge. I have heard it's much better the longer it sits, so next time I'll use a much larger portion of dough!

I am excited to make other items using this same technique with different recipes in the book for bagels, cinnamon rolls, etc...

Simple Crusty Bread

Adapted from ''Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day,'' by Jeff Hertzberg & Zoë François (Thomas Dunne Books, 2007)
Time: About 45 minutes plus about 3 hours' resting and rising

1 1/2 tablespoons yeast

1 1/2 tablespoons kosher salt

6 1/2 cups unbleached, all-purpose flour, more for dusting dough

Cornmeal.

1. In a large bowl or plastic container, mix yeast and salt into 3 cups lukewarm water (about 100 degrees). Stir in flour, mixing until there are no dry patches. Dough will be quite loose. Cover, but not with an airtight lid. Let dough rise at room temperature 2 hours (or up to 5 hours).

2. Bake at this point or refrigerate, covered, for as long as two weeks. When ready to bake, sprinkle a little flour on dough and cut off a grapefruit-size piece with serrated knife. Turn dough in hands to lightly stretch surface, creating a rounded top and a lumpy bottom. Put dough on pizza peel sprinkled with cornmeal; let rest 40 minutes. Repeat with remaining dough or refrigerate it.

3. Place broiler pan on bottom of oven. Place baking stone on middle rack and turn oven to 450 degrees; heat stone at that temperature for 20 minutes.

4. Dust dough with flour, slash top with serrated or very sharp knife three times. Slide onto stone. Pour one cup hot water into broiler pan and shut oven quickly to trap steam. Bake until well browned, about 30 minutes. Cool completely.

Yield: 4 loaves.

Variation: If not using stone, stretch rounded dough into oval and place in a greased, nonstick loaf pan. Let rest 40 minutes if fresh, an extra hour if refrigerated. Heat oven to 450 degrees for 5 minutes. Place pan on middle rack.

1 comment:

Andrea and Jim said...

Ooh, I totally need to try that! I have been baking just regular old bread and it's been good, but that looks amazing!

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