- 1 1/2 cups lukewarm water (approx. 100 degrees)
- 2 1/4 t. granulated yeast
- 2 1/4 t. coarse salt (.6 oz)
- 3 1/4 cups all-purpose white flour (16.3 oz)
Using glass bowl or cup, dissolve yeast in lukewarm water. Put flour in large bowl, incorporate salt into flour. Using a wooden spoon, add water with yeast to flour, making sure everything is uniformly moist. Dough should be wet and loose enough to conform to shape of with a loose fitting lid. Allow mixture to rise for approximately 2 hours, depending on room temp. and initial water temp. longer rising time (up to 5 hrs.) will not harm the result. You can use a portion of the dough any time after this period. Divide in half for 2 loaves. Recipe can be doubled for 4 loaves. Any dough not initially used can be refrigerated in same bowl with loose lid for up to 14 days.
To bake a loaf of bread, sprinkle flour on work surface, divide with your hands a grapefruit size portion of dough,dusting a bit of the flour on the outside of the portion of the dough, not really mixing any of the flour into the dough. Most of the dusting flour will fall off. Gently stretch the surface of the dough around to the bottom on all four sides, shaping the dough into a ball. No kneading required.
The entire process should take no more than 30 to 60 seconds. Place on parchment paper, cut to size of dutch oven. Cover loaf with towel and let rise for 40 mins.
Before placing in heated oven , dust with flour and make 3 slashes 1/4 inch deep across the top, using a serrated knife. (If refrigerated dough is used, allow more resting time before baking.)
The method of baking to be addressed here is to use a cast iron dutch oven (10 or 12 inch size). One of 3 methods can be used for baking. At home in your kitchen oven; or outside using either charcoal or woods coals. While dough is rising, preheat dutch oven to approximately 500 degrees. Use a trivet in bottom of oven, and preheat with lid on.
When temp is reached, carefully place dough,(with parchment paper on bottom) in oven and replace lid. Use insulated glove while doing this. Bake for 35 mins. at 450 degree. When using indoor oven remove lid for last 5 mins. Carefully remove loaf from oven and place on cooling rack. Slice at will.
Stan has been making this bread for 28 years and this is a time tested recipe.