As far as I’m concerned warm homemade bread is required at our house. There’s a common misconception that it’s difficult to make a yummy boule of bread, but I’m here to disprove that. Like some form of a domestic wonder woman, I will swoop into your kitchen and blow your mind by teaching you a simple and delicious way I learned to make artisan bread. Seriously. And like everything else I love, it’s cheap.
A few years back a book called, “Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day” was brought to my attention. You can find this master recipe online. They gladly share it with the public, hoping it will banish people’s fears of making their own bread.
Ingredients are as follows, 1 1/2 Tbs yeast (1 1/2 packets), 1 1/2 Tbs salt, 3 cups warm water, 6 cups flour. I add rosemary and oregano to mine but you don’t need it. Sometime I brush the top with egg whites before hand…but again, the basic recipe is great the way it is.
So let me show you exactly how easy this is.
Step 1: Get a hold of a 5 quart or more bucket with a lid. Poke a hole in it (if you skip this part, it’ll explode.) I got my bucket at Fred Meyer from the paint section. Throw the yeast and salt in there.
Step 2: Mix in the warm water.
Step 3: Add the flour, mix with a wooden spoon. Dough should be moist. Do not knead.
Step 4: Pop the lid on, let sit on the counter for 2 to 5 hours. It will double at least in size.
Step 5: The dough can be used at this point but it will be easier to use after you throw it in the fridge for a while. The dough will keep for up to 2 weeks. Slowly taking on a more sour dough-ish flavor. In fact, I have two buckets, so I choose bread at different stages.
Step 6: Using a serrated knife, cut off a chunk of dough. You can form it into any shape you like. Toss it onto a Pizza Peel that is dusted with Cornmeal (I use fine cornmeal). Sprinkle with flour and cut 1/4 inch slices into the top to help the bread expand. Crisscross, parallel, whatever. Let sit for 40 min.
Step 7. After about 20 min, you can preheat the oven to 450 degrees, with a baking stone inside and a broiler pan or sheet pan underneath.
Step 8. When your 40 min is up, slide the bread onto the stone. Add 2ish cups of water to the pan to create steam.
Step 9. Bake for 30 min.
Step 10. Let cool, eat and thank Haley for enlightening you.