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Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Amazing Crusty Bread - SUPER EASY!!

Wow, wow and WOW!! Is this bread ever tasty! The crunch on the exterior is amazing, and then you bite into it and it is soft and chewy on the interior. It is hard to believe it is SO easy to make this bread. It truly does taste like it was made be a professional bread baker! I recently ate dinner at a restaurant and the crust was chewy and hard to bite into...they need this recipe! lol

Crusty Bread from

3 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1¾ tsp salt
½ tsp yeast
1½ cups water

DO NOT OIL OR SPRAY PAN. This bread will NOT stick!! 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. This is a MUST. Overnight works great.
Heat oven to 450°. When the oven has reached 450° 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. This bread is SO amazing and couldn’t be simpler. I made one with orange zest (from one orange), almonds and dried cranberries – so yummy!

My next loaf will be fresh rosemary, garlic & parmesan.
Here are some variations that the blog owner has made: 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. She experimented using wheat flour and said that whole wheat was WAY too heavy…even with she used just 1 cup of wheat flour. Said it was okay but not great. She uses a 5.5 quart enamel cast iron pot. This size is perfect. She also uses an oval pot that is about 7.5-8 quarts. She was also told that ceramic deep dishes work well. I have been using my Pampered Chef Deep Dish Roaster with the Cover. I was surprised to find the bread pops right out and does not stick!!!

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