Sunday, October 14, 2012

Crusty Bread

I was intrigued by this recipe since you bake the bread in a dutch oven. I made sure to take the handle off the lid so it didn't melt and make a smelly mess in my oven. I tried the original recipe, but look at all the variations at the bottom of the recipe! Woo Hoo! I can be bread baking for a month on this one recipe! Turned out great!

Crusty Bread


3 cups unbleached all purpose flour
1 3/4 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon yeast
1 1/2 cups water

In a large mixing bowl, whisk together flour, salt and yeast. Add water and mix until a shaggy mixture forms. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and set aside for 12 - 18 hours. Overnight works great. Heat oven to 450 degrees. When the oven has reached 450 degrees place a cast iron pot with a lid in the oven and heat the pot for 30 minutes. Meanwhile, pour dough onto a heavily floured surface and shape into a ball. Cover with plastic wrap and let set while the pot is heating. Remove hot pot from the oven and drop in the dough. Cover and return to oven for 30 minutes. After 30 minutes remove the lid and bake an additional 15 minutes. Remove bread from oven and place on a cooling rack to cool.

Variations:

Cranberry, orange and almond.. In my large bowl I have 3 cups flour, 1 3/4 teaspoon of salt and 1/2 teaspoon yeast. Add about 3/4 cup cranberries, orange zest from one orange and about 1/2 cups sliced almonds. Mix it together well and add 1 1/2 cups water. Stir to form and shaggy dough.
 

Other bread flavors: Pepper jack cheese, Jalapeno cheddar, Raisin walnut cinnamon, Pumpkin sunflower poppy seed, Sharp cheddar, Rosemary lemon Gruyere, Lemon thyme Asiago, Asiago, Mixed herb with rosemary, chives and thyme and plain. Now I have to tell you that I have experimented using wheat flour. Whole wheat was WAY too heavy

Rye bread. It was delicious. I tried two different recipes. One was 1/2 rye flour and 1/2 white flour then added 1/2 teaspoon caraway seeds. For the first time it didn't rise much. The loaf was about 2-inches high. Made great focaccia, however. The second loaf was 1 cup Rye flour and 2 cups white flour, 1/2 teaspoons caraway seeds. I sprinkled caraway seeds on top. It turned out wonderful

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