You see them. The $5 big beautiful loaves of bread. You reluctantly hand over your money because you think..no, you know you could never create such a delight. Crunchy on the outside, but chewy and soft and on the inside. It’s a work of art really. Artisan Bread is within your reach, my friends, and it only takes 4 simple and inexpensive ingredients.
If you ever watch a video of a baker making bread, they use 4 ingredients: yeast, salt, flour, and water. It’s pretty amazing that 4 simple ingredients can turn into something so delicious. And we’re talking minimal skill level here. All it takes is your time and it does take time. Good bread takes time.
If you have 3 hours in your day, try this. Take a look at the ingredient list on your package of bread at home and let me know if it contains more than 4 ingredients. I would probably say yes.
Bread is very forgiving. You can leave the first rise in the fridge for an entire day if you need to. Take it out, shape it into your ball of dough and let it rise again.
This can also be divided into smaller bread bowls right before the second rise. They will just have a slightly shorter baking time. I made bread bowls with this recipe. This will give you 4 good size bread bowls.
It’s all about small changes. We are faced so often with processed foods and it is too hard to limit them completely. What’s important is that we try to minimize the amount of ultra-processed foods in our diets. Start with bread.
- 1 Tablespoon active dry yeast
- 1 Tablespoon kosher salt
- 2 cups warm water (bathwater temperature)
- 4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
- Corn meal for dusting the board
- In a large mixing bowl, add yeast, salt, water and flour
- Stir until combined, ensuring the flour is completely incorporated using your hands in necessary
- Cover with plastic wrap and let rest for 2 hours
- Sprinkle corn meal on a wooden board and take the dough out of the bowl with floured hands
- Shape into a ball and tuck the seams of the dough ball - sprinkle with flour and cover
- Let rest for another 30-40 minutes
- Place a stone in the oven and preheat the oven to 450°F
- Slide the dough ball onto the stone
- Make 2-3 criss cross slits on the top
- Bake for 20-22 minutes or until the top is golden brown
- Remove from oven and let cool before slicing