Friday, October 8, 2010

Autumn Bread

Autumn is my favorite weather.

Autumn means falling leaves

pumpkin pie (my most favorite pie in the world!)
delicious squash
new pencils
homemade crusty artisan bread.

It is super easy. Once you mix everything up you can have delicious tasting bread very easily in just minutes a day (well, besides baking and rising time).

In a large bowl or non-airtight (very important!) container, mix without kneading (yes, you read that right- just stir it with a spoon):

3 c. lukewarm water (just a little warmer than body temperature)
1 1/2 tblsp. dry yeast
1 1/2 tblsp. kosher salt- if you don't use kosher salt, please don't use 1 1/2 tblsp, it will be much, much too salty
6 1/2 c. unbleached white flour (measured with the scoop and sweep method)

Cover and let rise at room temperature 2-5 hours.

Refrigerate with lid on at least 3 hours or longer before shaping. (Cold dough is easier to shape.)

When ready to bake:
1. Sprinkle pizza peel (click for image) very LIBERALLY with corn meal (or it won't slide off later)
2. Sprinkle surface of refrigerated dough with flour. Pull up a 1 pound (grapefruit size) piece of dough and cut off with a serrated knife.
3. Gently stretch the surface of the dough around to the bottom of all four sides. (Put the rest of the dough back in the refrigerator and use within 14 days.)
4. Place the shaped ball (or whatever shape you choose) of dough on the cornmeal covered pizza peel.
5. Let rise for 40 minutes and enjoy the smell of rising bread!
6. After about 25 minutes of rising, set the oven to 450 with a baking stone on the middle rack. Place an empty broiler tray for water on the shelf below or beside the baking stone.
7. Let rise for the rest of the time.
8. When rising time has elapsed, dust the top of the loaf liberally with flour. With serrated knife, slash 1/4 inch deep pattern into the dough.
9. Prepare a cup of warm tap water and have ready before putting the dough in the oven.
10. With a quick jerking motion, slide the loaf off the pizza peel and onto the baking stone.
11. Quickly pour the prepared water into the broiler pan and close the oven door.
12. Bake for 30 minutes or until crust is nicely browned and firm to the touch. Let cool before cutting.

If you want your bread to keep a crisp crust, store it in a paper bag after it has cooled (not plastic).

This recipe is super easy because the dough stores in your refrigerator for up to 14 days. Any time you want fresh bread you can just pull it right out and bake it.

Okay, now that I've shared the bread recipe will you share your soup recipes with me? Pretty please?

This way we can both have delicious soup and bread for chilly autumn nights.


Nancy said...

Oh, Natasha, that bread look so delicious! I should have mixed up a batch tonight so I could have baked a loaf tomorrow. It's so quick and easy -- and delicious!

If I have a soup recipe you want that you don't already have, let me know and I'll type it for you.

Brenna said...

One of my favorite soups is homemade chicken noodle. . .

boil as much chicken (thighs and legs work really well) in water, debone chicken, add grated carrots and 1 chopped onion to broth-- season with salt.

for the noodles:
1 cup flour
2 T oil
1/4 c water

mix together, roll out and cut as thick as you like. add to boiling broth and simmer for 22 minutes or so. . . Voila! Delicious soup-- especially if you're sick.

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