Posted by: Deana | June 18, 2009

Artisan Bread

I’ve joined the artisan bread bandwagon, kind of.  Back in January I started reading about a cookbook, Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day.  Since then it’s been on my Amazon wish list.  In February I found this blog.  She has a version of artisan bread that I’ve had a lot of success with.  In fact, we can no longer get together with Z’s family for a meal without bringing this bread.  I love this bread recipe and we make it a lot, but there’s still a special place in my heart for Jackie’s French Bread.  Of all the thinks I bake and cook, bread is my favorite.  I genuinely enjoy the process of making bread – kneading warm bread dough is so relaxing.  And I love eating bread, so  the work is always worth the results.

  • 3 cups of warm water (110º-115º)
  • 1½  tablespoons of yeast
  • 1½ tablespoons of salt
  • 6½ cups of flour. (She said that she uses 1 cup of whole wheat flour, 1½ cups of bread flour, and 4 cups of all-purpose.  I’ve made this with just all-purpose and a combination of bread flour and all-purpose.   I would like to try it with whole wheat, but I haven’t yet, maybe next time.)

Mix the ingredients in something with a lid, or in a covered bowl, and put the dough in the fridge overnight.  She says they dough will keep for up to a week or two.   I think I’ve waited a few days to bake the bread, but I haven’t waited two weeks.

When it’s time to bake the bread, pull out all of the dough, or half if you want a smaller loaf. If I’m just making it for Z and myself, I only bake half. Form it into a ball and place it on a floured cutting board (those plastic flexible ones work great) with the smooth side of the ball up.   Cover it with a kitchen towel and let it rise for about 2 hours.

When the bread is almost done rising, put a dutch oven, cast iron pot, or other oven safe pan with a lid into the oven and preheat the oven to 450º.

When you’re ready to bake the bread, remove the preheated pan from the preheated oven and carefully flip the bread into the hot pan. (the smooth side of the dough will now be on the bottom and the uneven side will be on top, but that’s okay – it means a yummy crunchy top!)

Bake the bread in the pot with the lid on for 30 minutes.  Then remove the lid and bake for an additional 20 minutes.  Jackie once told me that any bread is done when the internal temperature is 190º.  So I always take the temperature of my bread, and call it done when it’s 190º and that’s always worked deliciously for me.

When the bread is done, turn it out of the pot and cool on a wire rack.  Slice into it and enjoy.  Z loves his with a little butter, which is good, but I usually just eat it as is, because that’s just so good too.

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Responses

  1. Thanks for the link – glad it is working for you!

  2. I enjoyed reading your comments on this and all your recipes. I hope to do more of that on my blog this summer.

  3. I hope you have time for that this summer too!

  4. […] but that’s another, much sadder, story.  I got the idea here.  For the dough, I used my artisan bread dough, with a little whole wheat flour.  I’ll share my pizza since Z’s pizza involves the […]


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