Tuesday, September 21, 2010

A Recipe-Day 21-Blog Challenge

Im choosing the following recipe because its one that I just got and I think its wonderful and pretty easy (if you dont think that letting bread rise for a million hours is hard, I mean you can DO other things while its rising).

A co worker gave this to me and she swore by it. I decided to try it because I love homemade bread (without a bread machine, thank you). I love the way the dough feels, I love the way it smells when its cooking, and I love the way it tastes when you pop it your mouth all warm with butter slathered on it. Thats good stuff. It really was easy, and it really was good. My hubby, who isnt as thrilled about bread as I am (he likes it sure, but he's not a freak about it like I am) even ooohed and aahed and couldnt quit eating it. Kids liked it too, but they are bread lovers as well.


1/4 tsp active dry yeast
11/2 cups warm water
3 cups all purpose flour, plus more for dusting. You may use white, whole wheat, or a combination of the two (which is what I did).
11/2 tsp salt
Cornmenal or wheat bran for dusting

In a large bowl, dissolve yeast in water. Add the flour and salt, stirring until blended. The dough will be shaggy and sticky. Cover bowl with plastic wrap. Let the dough rest at least 8 hours preferably 12 to 18 at room temperature...about 70 degrees.

The dough is ready when its surface is dotted with bubbles. Lightly flour a work surface and place dough on it. Sprinkle it with a little more flour and fold it over on itself once or twice. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and let it rest for about 15 minutes.

Using just enough flour to keep the dough from sticking to the work surface or to your fingers, gently shape it into a ball. Generously coat a clean dish towel with flour, wheat bran or cornmeal (I used corn meal). Put the seam side of the dough down on the towel and dust with more flour, bran, or cornmeal. Cover with another towel and let rise for about 1 to 2 hours. When its ready the dough will have doubled in size and will not readily spring back when poked with a finger.

At least 20 minutes before the dough is ready, heat oven to 475 degrees. Put a 6-8 quart heavy covered pot such as cast iron (this is what I used), enamel, pryrex or ceramic, in the oven as it heats. When the dough is ready, carefully remove the pot from oven, and lift off the lid. Slide your hand under the towel and turn the dough over into the pot, seam side up. The dough will lose tis shape a bit in the process, but thats OK. Give the pan a firm shake or two to  help distribute the dough evenly, but dont worry if its not perfect; it will straighten out as it bakes.

Cover and bake for 30 minutes. Remove the lid and bake another 15 to 20 minutes, until the loaf is beautifully browned. Remove the bread  from the dutch oven and let it cool on a rack for at least 1 hour before slicing.

Yeild: One 1 1/2 pound loaf.
Adapted from the New York Times

 So, my friend throws in a handful of sunflower seed (shelled already, of course) into the dough. I was going to do this but I forgot to get the seeds. Im doing it next time though. The only problem with this recipe is its gone very soon after its done....it is so good.


Anonymous said...

Oh, this sounds wonderful. Thanks for sharing. Also, THANK YOU for the PW link and the recipes...can't wait to try it ! :)

foxy said...

OMGosh, that sounds soooooooo good. I also am a little bit of a freak about fresh-out-of-the-oven bread. I mean, are there really people out there that AREN'T??

My latest craving, however, was carrot cake which I satisfied on Sunday. I'd never made one from scratch before that and let me tell you, it was so worth it. YUM.

Mama Drama Times Two said...

Yum. The Other Mother and I knew we were destined to be together when on our first date we ate an entire loaf of bread freshly baked from a local General Store.