Last year about this time, the New York Times created a stir in the foodie world with their publication of the recipe for No-Knead Bread (which I wrote about here.)
Now comes a new bread recipe, Simple Crusty Bread.
This recipe creates a large amount of dough that can be refrigerated, covered up to two weeks. Individual loaves can be baked by simply cutting off a piece of the dough, which is then baked on a pre-heated pizza stone, with a broiler pan filled with water in the oven as well. If you don’t have a pizza stone, the article suggests using a greased loaf pan instead.
As someone who got completely spoiled with fresh from the oven, crusty bread from the No-Knead recipe, I’m definitely going to give this recipe a try. I love the idea of mixing up the dough once and having the ability to bake a fresh loaf from it over a two week period.
Simple Crusty Bread
Summary: This is a fast and easy way to enjoy freshly baked crusty bread anytime. Bake free-form or in a loaf pan.
- 1 1/2 tablespoons yeast
- 3 cups lukewarm water (about 100° F.)
- 1 1/2 tablespoons kosher salt
- 6 1/2 cups unbleached, all-purpose flour, more for dusting dough
- 1. In a large bowl or plastic container, mix yeast and salt into 3 cups lukewarm water (about 100 degrees). Stir in flour, mixing until there are no dry patches. Dough will be quite loose. Cover, but not with an airtight lid. Let dough rise at room temperature 2 hours (or up to 5 hours).
- 2. Bake at this point or refrigerate, covered, for as long as two weeks. When ready to bake, sprinkle a little flour on dough and cut off a grapefruit-size piece with serrated knife. Turn dough in hands to lightly stretch surface, creating a rounded top and a lumpy bottom. Put dough on pizza peel sprinkled with cornmeal; let rest 40 minutes. Repeat with remaining dough or refrigerate it.
- 3. Place broiler pan on bottom of oven. Place baking stone on middle rack and turn oven to 450 degrees; heat stone at that temperature for 20 minutes.
- 4. Dust dough with flour, slash top with serrated or very sharp knife three times. Slide onto stone. Pour one cup hot water into broiler pan and shut oven quickly to trap steam. Bake until well browned, about 30 minutes. Cool completely.
- Yield: 4 loaves.
- Variation: If not using stone, stretch rounded dough into oval and place in a greased, nonstick loaf pan. Let rest 40 minutes if fresh, an extra hour if refrigerated. Heat oven to 450 degrees for 5 minutes. Place pan on middle rack.
Prep time: 15 min | Cook time: 30 min | Total time: 2 hours 50 min
Number of servings (yield): 12